art art therapy importance of art nature

I suspect that many artist find it difficult to express in words why our art has value - we know it does - isn't it enough just to look and feel the emotions it evokes? 

No, not enough.  We need to dig deep and supplement the images with another layer of expression, this time in words, in order to reach people who could benefit from having it in their lives.  

And so it is, in a contemplative Sunday morning mood, I have found the new-'ish' brand section in my website settings. I now meet my usual nemesis. How to describe my art and what is my slogan? 

Now, I don't want a slogan - you see very few in the art world; I'm afraid of it sounding cheesy and I'm already bucking the trend by wanting to have my logo.  However, I think it is a great tool to go through the process and force me to think deeply about what my artwork brings to people, which in itself will be of great value to help me market my work. 

Puffin on clifftop with flowers and ocean behind.

I know I can keep looking at my pictures and enjoy them every time. 

I see my mother (now 94) spending hours with her cushions in view and saying how much pleasure they bring her. 

I see my partner enjoy his cushion and picture, set in his cosy (really cool) cabin-themed living room and hear him suggest I make more art in this style.

I see my great niece and nephews playing with the cushions and cuddling them and asking for them at Christmas...

...and I get great feed-back from my wonderful, supportive friends and customers.

So I know they have power and they are giving something special to people, just how to put that into words?

I've thought about this long and hard over the last couple of years... brainstormed, mulled and got a headache on a number of occasions.  It's so difficult to express the deep feelings that images evoke without it sounding forced and unnatural.  And so, once again, the brainstorming begins...

We live in brick boxes, disconnected from the outside world and I know there are many of us who yearn to be out in nature more often but whose lives are too busy, or we find the petrol too expensive, to be able to get out as regluarly as we need. In fact, I think we are usually too busy to even think about, or understand, just how much we miss the natural world. 

Red Kite with mountains, heather and lake artwork.

Why do we need to be in nature?  -  to get space and fresh air;  to breathe;  to touch the ground and let go of stress;  to relax;  to rest our minds;  to be in the moment and pay attention to our surroundings because we actually want to;  to soak up the peace and serenity;  to feel connected and rooted;  to absorb positive energy;  to heal;  to replenish and refuel;  to revitalise, re-energise and restore our minds and bodies. 

I have to express it with language I don't normally use - because it's true and these are the words that describe it. I have to get comfortable with that because this is what I think my art can do for people, in some small way, when it is in their homes. 

Fox of the Forest. Vixen on forest track in late summer with foxgloves. Colourful textured art by Barbara Jane

My colours and textures are exaggerated because of the methods that I use and the landscapes and animals are a little abstract or have an illustrative style. But that's the element of artistic expression - maybe this gives an added extra in terms of colour therapy or emotive connection.

Imagination is powerful - if my pictures can support people to use theirs and be transported somewhere that helps to heal them from the stresses of their day then that's a good job done!

 So... now to condense all that down into a strap line.......












  • Rhidian Alun on

    What a beautiful narration of what art and nature means to you as an artist, and what it can do for those who connect with it. I feel a real yearning in your desire to express your passion through your work. There is no doubt in my mind from observing your existing portfolio that you are already imparting peace and healing to those who appreciate your creations. May God continue to bless and inspire your work.

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