The Language Of Art

I keep moving forward like a wild woman painting her life as she walks into it.

This thing I have with color has always been with me. If you visited my studio you’d see flecks of paint everywhere, even on the keyboard of my laptop.

So where does this fascination with color come from and why do some of us have it and others not so much. Is it psychological? Biological? Or does the Spirit play into the game far more deeply than we suspect?

I have a curious thing that happens to me. I normally dream in living color and on the rare occasion when I dream in black and white, I’m startled awake. I realize, as I recall the dream, that whatever it’s telling me is very important, in black and white… no messing around with interpretations.

I realize what happens in my dream life can easily be transferred to life as an artist. When I bring color into the image I’m painting, then I have all sorts of things on which to ruminate.

You see, art is a language and color is a big part of its vocabulary. We all know the language, deep inside us, but some are more fluent than others.  We know what we love when we see it and usually it’s the color that hits us first. But how we perceive the color is a personal narrative born out of our experience.

The lingo of color is so worth studying. Once I got the foundation, when I was very young, that reds and oranges are warm colors and blues and greens are cool colors and I memorized the theory behind the color wheel, then I was able to understand the emotions that color elicits. Now that’s where the action is. Red can sing the highest notes, blue can cool a fevered brow, green can bring us quiet hope and yellow shouts, “I’m here, all optimistic railing against the darker hues!”

Like uplifting music, a beautiful painting can make us soar over the mundane-ness of everyday life, if even for a brief moment, and that’s where the power of color lives, that place of transcendence where the hues of human perception leads us into new ways of thinking.

Now that’s a powerful language.