Art as Emotion

“Art is the expression of those beauties and emotions that stir the human soul.”

– Howard Pyle

Art is an extension of the way we each feel about the world.

Emotions are what make us human. The fact that no matter how different our backgrounds, we all grieve, feel joy and show anger, is something that connects each of us on a deeper level – it bonds us together in this human experience. It can be so important to feel through every experience, good or bad. And negative emotions can be just as beautiful as the positive. Without the bad there is no good.

So, when we put what we feel into what we create, it can be cathartic in the release, and also very relatable to our audience. No matter how much differently someone interprets your images when looking at them, they feel something, and to me, that’s what art is.

Inner Brick’s post got me thinking about emotions and how we represent them in our toy photography. And in that, if art is simply the visual expression of emotion, am I creating art?

Am I Creating Art?

While I recognize we all approach creating toy photos differently, the question of whether or not I personally am creating art is important to me.

“Art that recognizes my hopes or my fears makes me realize I’m alive.”

– Christopher Nieman

Art is an individual expression that can be absorbed by the masses. Like I said above, while our walks of life are all different, with patience we can understand each other’s struggles on an emotional level. In this, I believe art can connect us, and therefore, no matter how personal your art, it can also be a an important, perhaps therapeutic, experience to share it publicly.

While not an idea that can easily be put in a box, I feel the line in photography as art lies between simply photographing an object or scene versus attempting to convey a story or idea.

“Art has something to do with the achievement of stillness in the midst of chaos.”

-Saul Bellow

So, in light of all this, am I creating art? I hope so, I’d like to be, and I tend to think that if someone is intentionally expressing themselves through the act of creation, that they are, in fact, making art.

Emotions in Toy Photography

Toys in themselves can serve as iconographic objects. They’re not real people, places or things, but simplistic versions of such – abstractions of reality, if you will.  In this, I believe toys are the perfect medium for creating visual representations of memories and emotions, which are abstractions of reality within themselves.

Toy photography as art may not quite be mainstream yet, which can make it hard to define, but no art was, in its early days. You have to push forward, no matter your medium, to be accepted artistically.

So push forward I will.

“All great works of art are trophies of victorious struggle.”

-Julius Meier-Pressfield

~ Jennifer Nichole Wells

A weighted question for sure – but what is your definition of art? And is it your aim to create art in the toy photos you make? Let us know in a comment below.