Painting is the visual representation of who we are on the inside at various stages of our life. It helps us ‘see’ how we feel and who we are. More than that, paintings make our life beautiful and meaningful. For painters and artists it is a language of expression, a language through which they can express their personality and their character. However it is not only about making a painting and showing it to people, it is about spending time with it and seeing it flourish from a blank sheet of canvas or paper to a wonderful spectrum of colour.
Painting is not just throwing or applying colour on a canvas, it is more than that. It is the time, effort and affection that you put in a painting. However the beauty of painting is for those who see the painting and understand the language, they feel the painting and reach its depth.
Painting is a type of art and the allure of it is that it is a conversation between the painter and the one who sees and contemplates the painting. It is a language, a word spoken without any specific meaning because the meaning of the painting is divergent for everyone. For example an optimist will find light in the darkest of paintings and a pessimist will find oblivion in the brightest of paintings. See, this is the beauty of painting. It is the purest form of art, in fact every art is pure and raw because it enables not only the artist to see themselves from the inside but also allows the one seeing the art to know their truest self.
Painting, like art is a realisation and not a skill. A painting doesn’t have to meet certain standards of beauty or expertise. You don’t need a specific degree to paint like a professional or an artist, in fact you don’t need professionalism in painting at all. You don’t need a degree in arts to call yourself an artist because any one who creates is in artist. You don’t need a technique and you don’t need a degree, all you need is the power of honesty and trust, to trust in yourself that you can make something that is beautiful to you, something that compliments who you truly are.
There is one thing that I want to highlight, every painting doesn’t have to be ‘beautiful’. In fact what is beautiful? Is beautiful being bright and intricate and perfect. Beautiful is something that attracts the eye and that is different for every person. Beautiful is different for every human being because every human being is different from the other. Beauty to one person might be nature and to the other it might even be death. There is no category of beauty. People who try to categorize everything. Beauty cannot be categorized. For example, to someone there might be beauty in a forest but others might find beauty in a deserted desert or a grim cemetery.
“I dream of painting and then I paint my dream.”
– Vincent Van Gogh
What is Painting and How it Developed Over the Centuries
Painting is a genre or a type of visual arts. In fact it is one of the most prominent art that existed and still exists especially because of its easy use. It is one of the primitive arts in fact painting was the skill or the type of art that showed the world what art really was and what was its power apart from language. Painting is simply to apply paint or colour on a surface.
Now some people might ask that how painting was done easily because nowadays you need A LOT of supplies for painting. You need a good quality paper or even better a canvas, you need paints, either acrylic or oil paints or glass paints, you need special brushes of different sizes, different chemicals or oils to dilute paints, you need palette knives and whatnot. Apart from all these intricate, expensive supplies, when we use these we are forgetting the actual meaning of painting.
In primitive times all you needed to paint was coloured sand or mud and a rock surface or a wall. You see, they didn’t even need brushes because they used their fingers and hands and in fact many artists or painters nowadays still use their hands and fingers in their masterpieces. In fact rock art was the first to be discovered in caves in Europe and Indonesia. If you want more information about art and its discovery you can see my blog on Art: The Movement of the Millennia. We can see the difference clearly from how painting started in primitive times and how it has progressed into what it is today.
How I Started Painting and What Painting Means to Me
Painting is the skill that altered me as a person and the way I thought. I grew up thinking art was useless because there was already so many colours around me and that fascinated me. I thought I didn’t need colours in my life. I didn’t even used to be good at painting because to me it was nothing more than wastage of time. I never thought that someday I’d be writing about art and painting itself. It is really surprising to think how divergent you end up after so much time.
Art lessons to me were nothing more that an hour of communication with my friends and I never knew that I would ever put so much focus and attention in painting. After a lot of time had passed, I saw myself in 7th Grade when I realized how important colour is to me. I became a pessimist and I apprehended that colour is the one thing I yearn for. I needed colour everywhere and that is when I realized how important painting is to me. It was a cold winter day of December and I badly wanted to paint. I always had paints in my cupboards but they would never get a chance to shine on paper.
It had been a really long time since I had painted and so I picked up a sketch paper and some paints and brushes, sat on a marble staircase and started painting. That is when I realized that color can make such a difference, it can alter worlds and voids and personas. Painting either my imagination or putting my own twist on someone else’s painting made me really happy and it gave me a void to invest my energy, time and focus in. I loved the feeling of painting, the time and the devotion that is invested in painting is boundless Who knew that in future I would end up investing hours and days of my life in art and painting. You don’t create a masterpiece in hours, it takes days and even months sometimes.
More than that, art is inside all of us. Art was inside me and it was just waiting for a calling. Art is inside you as well, you just need to listen to its language, to forget everything and listen closely.
I realized that painting is a communication with yourself, asking yourself what looks good and what doesn’t. It is a language worth hearing, a language that is only heard with focus, attention, devotion and affection. You can’t be impatient with painting, you have to wait because all beautiful things take time and effort to form.