The Concept of Art: Rules

Rules for Art
Artwork made by Janet Botes with Willow tree branches and thread. Image has been manipulated.

The concept of art is something that could and should be explored by any person, whether he/she is an artist (or even wants to be one) or not. It is something that can be very personal to each and every person, and, as such, the concept of art has many different branches within WillowSeed too. Today, however, I want to write about a particular branch, namely “rules”.

Are Rules Useful?

Rules can be useful if used as some type of guideline. Yet, I personally believe that where some rules can be useful, other rules can hamper creativity. For example I don’t like how we are told that we must stick to one signature technique for our artwork. Another I heard plenty of times is that my stories are written in the wrong way. Both these rules can hamper the artist in exploring and growing their talents.

Art is not something that can be contained, oh no, for it is about being free. We are free to express ourselves and hopefully find someone who understands the deeper meaning within the artwork (and perhaps even your own soul). It will be hard for people to see who you are if you hide behind everything you are told.

The Personal Aspect

Speaking of souls, is art part of our souls? Yes! Or it is for me. Art is part of everything we are, for we create from what we are inside, do we not? We put a little bit of ourselves in whatever we create, which makes it such a personal, open project.

Artists show themselves, and therefore they often show their own vulnerabilities to the people willing to take notice. Others show their passion, their strengths and their talent. Each and every artist is unique. Thus each and every artist will have his/her own technique and signature. It is very personal and so is art.

We choose our favourite artists because we like their particular technique. This particular technique will not exist if the person didn’t go through unique circumstances. It will also not exist if this person didn’t have his unique personality. We are after all individuals with our own set of issues.

So, No Rules?

That’s not what I mean at all. Rules can be good, but some are but guidelines. Some people say their way of doing things is the right way only because it makes money for them. Others will try the exact same techniques and it will not work for them. Some artists will always live the “artist’s life” where there are struggles, lack of food and little understanding, but at least they are doing what they love. Just make sure you can pay the bills first.

Perhaps it is about finding the balance between what we want as artists and what people want from us as people. While you try to find that balance, try not to forget who you are and who you would like to be. Remember that art is not meant to be perfect, but its imperfections should be admired.

The next post will be a rant on the concept of art again, but this time I will explore a different branch. The Willow tree has many branches!

To the next branch => Click Here

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