Why do artists make art? What drives artists to become artists? This has been a question asked by many throughout the ages. It strikes at the very definition of art, and what it means to us in our personal lives. Artists may have very different reasons for becoming artists and making art. I know some who paint because its something they always loved to do, while others create for more personal reasons (ie it relaxes them or acts as a release of emotions). Some artists also try to have a higher purpose, and make artworks about certain social issues to try to incite change.
As for myself, I create art because it has always been something that has brought balance to my life. Art is something I have always been drawn to, even as a young child. Art is the one thing in my life that I can always have complete control over. I’ve used art creation to release very negative emotions, and other times art has been a way for me to express great joy.
Artists of the world are diverse and come from different cultures, beliefs, and backgrounds. Yet, they create art for one or more of the below reasons.
Why do artists make art?
Creating art for funMany artists, including myself, enjoy the fun of mixing colors on the palette, applying paint to a canvas, wasting away time in a studio with favorite music playing, the feel of clay between the fingers, etc.
Art was always my favorite class in elementary school – and even back then I planned on becoming an artist. Creating was always fun for me – my favorite way of passing time.
Here is one of our spotlighted artists, Robin Wiesneth, who creates art for fun and humor.
Expressing emotions - feelings, beliefs, thoughts and memoriesI have always used painting and drawing as a way of getting repressed thoughts and memories into the open. Some of these paintings are very personal – and I would not show anywhere.
In others, the real meaning is hidden inside the composition. For myself, this has served as a release of emotions, and has been obviously therapeutic.
Here is what Paulo Themudo has to say about why he creates art.
”The essential subject of my paintings are the expression, and the profound of my soul, thinking that I’m a man like every other man on earth, but, that I came to this world to give something that I think can be eternal.”
To have an effect on the viewer.
Many artists paint, sculpt, photograph, etc. to have some sort of effect on the viewer. They are hoping for a reaction, whether that be positive or negative. Vincent Van Gogh felt this way about painting, as we learn from his famous quote “I want to touch people with my art. I want them to say 'he feels deeply, he feels tenderly.'”
Here is what UK artist Sarah Shaw has to say about her Monolith series:
My paintings tend to play with symbolism of different objects and to explore different ways of conveying a sense of 'the sublime', a sense of the epic (perhaps a sense of spirituality) and the intimate (us as tiny humans). These latest paintings emerged from a fascination with the memorial flowers that are often strapped around lampposts to remember the loved one who has met their end at that place.. a daily, sometimes sombre, often surprisingly beautiful reminder of our own mortality in an everyday mundane sense.
Artists also create art for a variety of other specific reasons, including:
- To demonstrate technical expertise with a medium.
- Celebrating the aesthetics of common, ordinary and mundane objects
- Depict the beauty in nature
- Explore elements of art – line, shape, space, color, etc.
- Innovation and breaking rules
- Use technology and original materials to create art that has not been created before.
- Tell stories
- What other reasons do artists make artworks?
Why do YOU create art?