Why Visual Art Is Essential To Human Life

Why Visual Art Is Essential To Human Life

Creating art is the best and most accessible medium to express our emotions.
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Art: the conscious use of skill and creative imagination, especially in the production of aesthetic objects.

Art is an integral part of the human experience. Self-expression that comes from art not only benefits the artist, but also the viewers. Whether it be painting, sketching, or any other of the many mediums, there is rooted commonality in the way many interpret a certain image.

Since art is visual, some viewers may be more willing to view an opposing perspective when it is visual and not as combative as a conversation may be. Being able to view another's perspective on an idea or topic may help you question your own biases and opinions. Creating art also gives us space where we can examine our perspective without judgment.

Being able to express one's opinions, attitudes, and beliefs in visual art are essential to one's well-being. In the age of social media, it is easy to be caught up in presenting our 'best-self', making it easier to lose sight of our actual opinions and viewpoints because we want to be seen in a certain light by our peers.

Creating art has also been known to maintain positive psychological health. In a Huffington Post article, it is clear that creating art has many psychological benefits. Research has shown that creating art reduces stress and anxiety and can increase positive emotions, among many other effective outcomes.

Creating visual art can help people tap into their creative sides that are often hidden during a daily 9-5 or classroom setting. In school, along with work, most activities are based on logic or reasoning and starve the creative sides of ourselves. It is important to live a balanced life that both caters to the left and right sides of our brains.


"Guernica" (1937) — Pablo PicassoWikimedia Commons

Visual art also transforms the way we view the world around us, the people we surround ourselves with, and the way we view ourselves. One piece of art that caused major waves in the past was Pablo Picasso's "Guernica" in 1937. Picasso was able to bring to life the brutality and inhumanity of humans throughout the war.

His painting was a reference to Nazi Germany bombing the Basque country of "Guernica" during the Spanish Civil War, which brought tremendous amounts of pain and anguish to many Europeans.

Even though a very violent image, "Guernica" has become an expression of peace, embodying the anti-war sentiment. "Guernica" was and is still seen as the political piece that changed the perspective on war for many people around the world.

Even though we all can't be the next Pablo Picasso, we can all still practice art. I know a lot of people have a strong opinion on whether they are an 'artist' or not, but I beg everyone to at least go out and try.

Even though art can be strenuous mentally, and can become frustrating, it is important to foster our artistic side to get a break from our regular routine. Go create something new!

Cover Image Credit: unsplash.com

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11 Things Psychology Majors Hear That Drive Them Crazy

No pun intended.
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We've all been there. You're talking to a new acquaintance, or a friend of your parents, or whoever. And then, you get the dreaded question.

"So what are you studying in school?"

Cue the instant regret of picking Psychology as your major, solely for the fact that you are 99.9% likely to receive one of the slightly comical, slightly cliche, slightly annoying phrases listed below. Don't worry though, I've included some responses for you to use next time this comes up in conversation. Because it will.

Quick side note, these are all real-life remarks that I've gotten when I told people I was a psych major.

Here we go.

1. So are you, like, analyzing me right now?


Well, I wasn't. But yeah. Now I am.

2. Ugh so jealous! You picked the easy major.


"Lol" is all I have to say to this one. I'm gonna go write my 15-page paper on cognitive impairment. You have fun with your five college algebra problems, though!

3. So can you tell me what you think is wrong with me? *Shares entire life story*


Don't get me wrong; I love listening and helping people get through hard times. But we can save the story about how one time that one friend said that one slightly rude comment to you for later.

4. Well, s**t, I have to be careful what I say around you.


Relax, pal. I couldn't diagnose and/or institutionalize you even if I wanted to.

5. OMG! I have the perfect first client for you! *Proceeds to vent about ex-boyfriend or girlfriend*


Possible good response: simply nod your head the entire time, while actually secretly thinking about the Ben and Jerry's carton you're going to go home and demolish after this conversation ends.

6. So you must kind of be like, secretly insane or something to be into Psychology.


Option one: try and hide that you're offended. Option two: just go with it, throw a full-blown tantrum, and scare off this individual, thereby ending this painful conversation.

7. Oh. So you want to be a shrink?


First off, please. Stop. Calling. Therapists. Shrinks. Second, that's not a psych major's one and only job option.

8. You know you have to go to grad school if you ever want a job in Psychology.


Not completely true, for the record. But I am fully aware that I may have to spend up to seven more years of my life in school. Thanks for the friendly reminder.

9. So you... want to work with like... psychopaths?


Let's get serious and completely not-sarcastic for a second. First off, I take personal offense to this one. Having a mental illness does not classify you as a psycho, or not normal, or not deserving of being treated just like anyone else on the planet. Please stop using a handful of umbrella terms to label millions of wonderful individuals. It's not cool and not appreciated.

10. So can you, like, read my mind?


It actually might be fun to say yes to this one. Try it out and see what happens. Get back to me.

11. You must be a really emotional person to want to work in Psychology.


Psychology is more than about feeling happy, or sad, or angry. Psychology is about understanding the most complex thing to ever happen to us: our brain. How it works the way it does, why it works the way it does, and how we can better understand and communicate with this incredibly mysterious, incredibly vast organ in our tiny little skull. That's what psychology is.

So keep your head up, psychology majors, and don't let anyone discourage you about choosing, what is in my opinion, the coolest career field out there. The world needs more people like us.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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Short Stories On Odyssey: Roses

What's worth more than red roses?

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Five years old and a bouquet of roses rested in her hands. The audience-- clapped away her performance, giving her a standing ovation. She's smiling then because everything made sense, her happiness as bright as the roses she held in her hands.

Fifteen now, and a pile of papers rested on her desk. The teachers all smiled when she walked down the aisle and gave them her presentation. She was content then but oh so stressed, but her parents happy she had an A as a grade, not red on her chest.

Eighteen now and a trail of tears followed her to the door. Partying, and doing some wild things, she just didn't know who she was. She's crying now, doesn't know anymore, slamming her fists into walls, pricking her fingers on roses' thorns.

Twenty-one and a bundle of bills were grasped in her hands. All the men-- clapped and roared as she sold her soul, to the pole, for a dance. She's frowning now because everything went wrong, but she has to stay strong, for rich green money, is worth more than red roses.

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