Can Art Boost Your Mood?
Art is a form of expression. This statement has been reinforced by health care professionals who have recognized art as a type of therapy and the way mood is affected by color. You have probably noticed the same effects on yourself. Whether it was from looking at an image of pain, or a happy photo of bright flowers bathed in sunlight art can create moods.
Art is a form of communication that was developed before the written word. It was used to pass on valuable information. The images created a valuable source of insight into what the person was thinking or feeling at the time it was made. Humans, as social creatures, are conditioned from an early age to not only express ourselves, but learn to identify the mental state of others.
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A therapeutic discipline with roots in both art and psychology was developed in the mid-20th century. Its practice revolves around enabling people to overcome physical, mental, and emotional disabilities and trauma. The proper application of this therapy has been found to provide patients with an alternative method of communication when verbal interaction is not feasible.
Emotions such as fear, stress, anger, happiness and many more can be portrayed in the images that are created by the patient undergoing art therapy. The non-verbal communication is a great asset to patients who are not able or uncomfortable talking.
Influence of Colors
Colors in art can also be used to change or enhance your mood. Lively colors will often give a person a feeling of generally having more energy, while darker colors can bring a sense of melancholy.
Here are the four primary colors, in negatives and positives, as defined by psychology studies:
- Red is thought to be a very physical color, bringing to mind both negative and positive overtures. It is often thought to be masculine, aggressive, and strong.
- Blues are linked to an intellectual response, by providing a calm, reassuring, even cold reaction in people.
- Yellow is often associated with friendliness, but can also elicit thoughts of depression and give the impression of fragility.
- Green shades are perceived as a balancing color. It brings to mind peace, rejuvenation, but by some triggers a feeling of blandness.
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These emotional ties are mirrored in images that individuals encounter. A strong example is the color yellow. Consider for yourself how the image of a bright sunflower in the sun makes you feel, now think of another image such as a line of yellow ribbons lining the fence of a military installation. The first most likely made you happy, maybe even brought a smile, the second made you sad.
Art can elicit any number of different emotions in a person. The same image can even produce different moods in two people looking at the same piece. Your taste in art is as personal as the work itself.
Remember that works of art are not limited to paintings, but include sculptures, name art, photos, sketches and much more. What is important is how it makes you feel when you look at it. If you are seeking pieces of art that will uplift your mood, choose those items with colors that make you happy. Or portray images that bring good memories flooding into your mind.