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XO | Tom Blog

Art really isn’t art unless it has a point of view. For something to end up as more than just a piece of art, it should convey perspective. As subjective as my opinion is toward any piece of art, the main thing I expect of it is to reveal its soul. It has to be more than just an exercise in aesthetics and techniques.

Life experience. Philosophy. Relationship. Joy. Hardship. Discovery. Questions. Spirituality. History. Love of other art forms. These will always have more impact on an audience than an artist’s formal training of his or her particular form of art. For instance, a great filmmaker is not simply one who has studied the craft of making a film, but rather observes and studies life and appreciates other different art forms.

A so-called artist can succeed in making a technical piece of art, using the right set of tools, and properly mimicking taught styles, while having created something that may not truly be art, but rather only art in a technical form. It is art missing its soul…the soul of its creator. A creator aware of their own soul is typically able to inspire and stir up the soul of its subject, and then its audience.

On the other hand, a different piece of art, while imperfect and technically flawed, may actually succeed in being true art by having conveyed more than just learned techniques. Some art that fails at presenting itself as polished and perfect, while still offering its audience an authentic experience.

Of course, it’s great when a piece of art is able to merge both the technical and the authentic, but without honesty and authenticity, an attempted work of art is just a lifeless thing. Creating art necessarily requires more than a degree and book knowledge. A person who wants their art to be significant must be open and vulnerable and attempt to convey something meaningful and personal, even when failure is at risk. For me, significant art doesn’t have to be understood, but it should speak with the unique tone of its author so that it can be felt. What a piece of art means to me is less important than whether it makes me feel something.