Inspiration is the key to the birth of every wonderful piece of art. Genuine artists possess a very sensitive soul that draws inspiration from things or events that might seem irrelevant to the rest of the world. William Wordsworth was so inspired by the field of yellow flowers that he wrote the beautiful poem, “The Daffodils”. The beauty of every work of art is how the inspired soul of an individual translates the idea through his or her art. The medium the artist chooses, literature, music, dance, or painting, becomes a reflection of the artistic soul that outpours its exhilarated self, giving birth to a wonderful piece of art. This art is not just a beautiful spectacle to be enjoyed, but an entity that needs to be revered.
Paintings belong to a unique realm of creativity as it employs a non-verbal interpretation of ideas. A work of art, hence, speaks the language of colors. The basic idea that paintings try to convey might contain traces of the artist’s experience, his/ her ideology, thoughts, research, and much more. Genuine artists create a painting through a very strenuous process of creativity where they explore their own life or the life that they see around with a sense of oneness with the subject that gets painted. The process of creativity can be equated to childbirth in every sense. Therefore a painting should be considered as the child of an artist.
Copying a work of art equals abduction of one’s offspring and can be equally painful for any genuine artist. We have seen students copying works of artists for learning the techniques. They practice this in many art schools. There are instances where people copy a particular piece of art with the permission of the artist. But there are also cases of forgery where someone copies a painting and sells it as the creation of the original artist. This is a great offense and can be legally punishable too. There is another type of copying, which comes under plagiarism, where one artist copies and publishes the work of another artist without his permission or without giving credit to the original owner of the painting.
An artist should be very careful while creating a piece of art.
We are free to refer to other paintings.
We are free to learn each other's techniques.
We are free to use the same theme.
We are free to use the same colors.
But we are not supposed to copy the work in any way that our work resembles the original. The idea behind a painting is the property of the artist. Another artist has no right to copy the basic features of that painting without the artist’s permission. It is unethical to do it if an artist tries to publish the copied painting as his/her own. A copy can never equal an original and trying to establish oneself as the creator of a copied work can ruin the credibility of an artist in his field of discipline.One can copy a work of art with the author’s permission. The original artist and the time in which the painting was made should be mentioned in case it is used for academic purposes.
Artists should be very careful in maintaining uniqueness and authenticity within their creative field. One should be aware of the artistic trends of his period. The work can be a powerful representation of the essence of the era. It can resemble other artworks of the period in spirit and technique. We have seen famous artists following surrealistic modes during the Post-war period to show the basic emotion of fragmentation and rootlessness. But each painting was unique in its sense. This uniqueness comes from an authentic representation of life by a genuine artist.
Being original in a world filled with copies is a rare quality. Let all upcoming artists be governed by principles of originality and creative fervor.
Dr. Devisree S
Artist, Art Critic