The Challenge of Writing an Artist’s Statement That is Artistic and Deep But Also Makes Sense

Often, while viewing other artists experiences with their creativity, defined by pen to paper within their “Artist’s Statements”, I find myself thinking, “This reminds me of man trying to define God by putting creativity into a box.”  Oft times too I wonder, “What the heck are they talking about? I wonder if even ‘they’ even know.”

I have met all kinds of artists.  I always hope that I will share some kind of phenomenon with fellow artists, of an unmistakable vibration we both generate and feed off of.  I hope that our connection will cause us to reach new heights and feel compelled to go home and create great things.  I rarely come across artists like that, they are as different from one another as anyone.  

I really do believe  there is an ‘energy’ within art, colors, and it is that energy about a piece of art that people resonate to.. or not.  Some only like only my precise artwork, of which I feel are renderings and not in my personal opinion, ‘true art’.  It tells me that we are not connected in a ‘spiritual’ sense.  We connect on other levels though so consequences of that kind of thinking are not something that needs to be brooded over, on the outside chance you find my opinion offensive or objectionable.  

I think a lot of ‘art talk’ is mumbo jumbo, and is as redundant and boring as the latest football player explaining how his team is going to win the next game. Yet, I also think there is a need for the artist to describe the connection they feel with their art.  Doing that, helps the viewer to enter their world, as well as the artist to understand ‘what the heck happened’ to cause them to create what they did.  

Creativity is elusive, but the more we enter that gate, the more we find ourselves in the presence of something truly remarkable. I think the vibration of colors, coupled with the spirit of the dance of creative action, can be found in all kinds of art and no one has the market on that.  Once in a great while we come across genius like Leonardo da Vinci and we stand in awe. Because of miraculous adventures of the soul, in any genre, it is our responsibility to pursue the unknown. Leonardo da Vinci only scratched the surface. Pursuing the vibrations of the elusive is often an alone experience.  It is within that ‘prayer’ of sorts that mystics are uncovered. There are many ways of doing it though, as there are religions, so I don’t think anyone has the key to it all.  

So how do you do it? How do you write an “Artist’s Statement” that makes sense? First define who you are within your work in your own mind. If you do not know, you won’t be able to write anything at all that others will comprehend. Be careful of the mumbo jumbo, but write out your heart as you look at your work. You may just discover a part of yourself you had not met before. Take your time, discover who you are. Remember da Vinci as well, nothing he did was done without extreme confrontation of what it was he was looking to explore, so laziness is not acceptable. Right? Yes! 

A Critical Overview of Visual Elements for Artistic Creation

Elements of design are the basic units of a work of art like painting, drawing or any other visual piece. They are the ingredients used in the creation of any artistic piece. The elements of design used in art include dot, line, shape, plane, colour, space, texture, weight, and value. They are line, form, shape, colour, space and texture. The artist puts the visual elements together to make a statement in art the same way we put words together to form a sentence. Every artist must know and understand them.

Line: It is the product of a moving point of a marking tool such as a pencil creates a path of connected dots on a paper. This path of connected dots or mark left by a moving point is referred to as a line. Line is defined as the path of a dot through space. This indicates that it takes movement to create a line. Examples of lines in the natural and manmade environment include leaves and branches of trees, rivers, the contours of a bird, outlines of electrical gadgets like Television set, speakers, computers etc. A skilled artist uses lines to control the movement of the viewer’s eyes. Lines lead the eye of the viewer into, around and out of visual images in an artwork.

Dot: It is a small round spot. It is usually created from the nibs of writing tools such as pencil, pen, crayon, etc. Pebbles, fruits, human heads are examples of dots in nature.

Shape: A shape is defined as an enclosed area. It is an area that stands out from the space next to or around it due to a defined or implied boundary. This area is clearly set off by one or more of the other five visual elements of art. It is the artist’s unique way of representing ideas in two dimensions. Shapes are flat. They are limited to only two dimensions: length and width. A shape may have an outline or boundary around it. Examples of shapes in the natural and manmade environment include shapes of human head, stones, fruits, rectangles, squares, circles etc.

Form: It is an object with three dimensions thus length, width (breadth) and depth (height). It is the shape of volume or mass. Forms can be grouped into two namely geometric forms and organic forms. Geometric forms include tables, pots, statues etc. while examples of organic forms are stones, trees etc. The only difference between form and shape is that shapes do not have depths but forms do.

Space: It is considered as a boundless area. It is the distance between, around, above, below and within shapes and masses. It is a measurable distance between pre-established points. A void or vacuum in which other elements are actualized or seen is space. Spaces can be seen in both two and three dimensional forms. There are two kinds of space thus positive space which is the space occupied by the objects in a picture and negative space that is the space around objects in a composition or picture.

Texture: This is the surface character or quality of materials. It refers to how things feel or look as though they might feel if touched. This may be smooth, rough, coarse, hard or soft. Texture can be experienced particularly through two of our senses thus the sense of sight and the sense of touch. However, texture can be perceived in the mind. Texture comes in four basic forms: actual, simulated, abstract and invented.

Mass: It is the implied or actual bulk, weight, size or magnitude of an object. In a two dimensional drawing or painting, mass refers to a large area or form of one colour.

Colour: It plays a major role in the elements of design. It is the reflection of white light on an object or sensations created on the eye by rays of decomposed light. Colour may vary in degrees of dullness or brightness and lightness or darkness. All natural and manmade objects that surround us have colours. Tomatoes, flowers, plants, cars, clothes etc display varieties of colours.

Value: This is the degree of lightness or darkness existing in colour. Value is determined by the amount of light reflected by a surface. Value is also referred to as tone.

These elements of artistic creation have their own distinctive features that must be known by artists especially amateurs in the art profession so that they can mature into creative giants in the art industry.