The Art of Emotion

A dear friend sent me some photos she took while vacationing in Galveston to use as painting inspiration. Yesterday, I used one for this watercolor. It’s not an exact replica of the photo, and it isn’t meant to be. As with writing, painting inspiration is taking something and making it your own.

I changed up the lighting, added things, took other things away, just as I would if I were writing a scene based on the photo (or a memory or other bit of inspiration).

We experience the world in different ways because we come at it through various lived experiences. Though we can share moments with others around us, the occurrence will likely vary in some way for each person experiencing it. Some may look at this painting and feel peace, others may feel the excitement of sailing the ocean, still another may feel fear because water terrifies them. There’s no right or wrong way to feel, there’s just different.

We are the only ones who lived our exact lives, felt our exact feelings, thought our exact thoughts. Therefore, no one experiences the world or shared event in the same way. That’s a good thing. We’re unique.

It’s also good that even though our emotion may not exactly match someone else’s, we’ve likely experienced at some point in our lives the emotion they’re feeling. Not in exactly the same way, but it’s close enough to allow us to understand and connect with those around us—if we choose to.

Kindness. Love. Understanding. We need more of those in our world.

About Joan Stradling, Author

Joan Stradling is a middle grade and YA author of stories with magical elements. She loves painting, baking, crafting, pet wrangling, and anything else she can fit into her schedule. A passionate believer in the power of books, she still hopes to one day ride a dragon, meet a Hobbit, or discover new worlds by walking through a wardrobe. In the meantime, she imagines and writes about her own incredible worlds and characters–and continues to live vicariously through the adventures in other’s books. You can find her on Instagram (@JoanStradlingAuthor) or Twitter (@justJoanS) or FB (Joan Stradling aka Joan Stewart) Join me on Patreon: Patreon.com/joanstradling
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