Types of Art

To most people, the word “art” stirs up images of paint brushes, colors, and drawings.  I discussed in my last post about how we should all take the time to observe and find art manifested in everyday life, so I felt that I need to spend some time on the more conventional forms of art.


Let’s start with the most obvious art form…painting.  According to Wikipedia, the oldest known paintings are around 40,000 years old, created by prehistoric men on the walls of caves to depict different animals.  Whether they used paintings to communicate information with each other or they had the need to express their thoughts and emotions, it’s interesting to know that art has been in existence for a very long time.

Throughout time,  the techniques and subjects of paintings have changed, but they all have the common bond of being a way for people to express their vision for other people to see.  One can buy expensive paint brushes, cheap paint brushes, or make their own with some pine straw.  One can paint with watercolors, acrylics, oils, berries, and many other materials.  I have seen thousands of paintings during my lifetime and have seen so many different subjects, from landscapes to portraits to paintings of robot monkeys.  A painting will take you to a different place, a different mindset, or a different perspective on something, depending on what the artist intended.


Another common art form is drawing.  The act of taking a pencil, pen, crayon or other writing tool and creating a picture is very fascinating.  I’m sure you’ve spent time doodling on a piece of paper at some point in your life.  Whether you think so or not, that doodle is a work of art.  It expressed some feeling or thought in your head at that point in time.  Some people draw caricatures, some people draw realistic images that look like they could be photographs, and some people draw cartoons.  It’s all art.

Have you ever seen one of those drawings created by small dots?  I took a drawing class in high school but could never seem to transfer the images in my head and soul to the paper.

sculptureYet another important art form is sculpting.  You could consider a sculpture a painting or drawing in three dimensions.  The original sculptures date back to prehistoric times when Neanderthals would form tools and pendants out of rocks and clay.  Various materials have been used for sculpting, including: rock, clay, marble, glass, wood, metal and in today’s world, anything and everything has been used to make a sculpture.  Sculptures have been used for years in many religions as symbols of worship, they have been considered status symbols, and have even been used to depict presidents on the side of a mountain (Mt. Rushmore).

These are just three of the many different forms of art that have been around for centuries.  People in ancient civilizations, who had nothing but time on their hands to figure things out, were the first to show that all humans have that innate need to express creativity and ideas in a visual way.  I’ll discuss some other forms of art in my next post, but for now, I want to challenge you with this:  as you’re going through your daily routine, see how many times you can spot the three art forms I discussed in this post.  Until next time…

Artfully yours,

Russell R.