on March 04, 2013 /
Tips for Selecting the Perfect Wall Art Piece
Often a do-it-yourselfer or even a trained professional carpenter has no idea what to do with a room once it`s been completely remodeled. What kind of artwork to put on the walls is as foreign to them as the inner workings of a nuclear reactor. In this article, we share some tips to help you select and decide on the perfect artwork to complement your new space.
When you have this nice, shiny room completely remodeled, it would be a shame to let it sit unadorned for too long. One way to completely change the look and feel of a room is through the use of wall art. These are paintings and pictures that help to accentuate the colors and decor of the room and which reflect your personality.
The first step to the perfect wall art is to take a good hard look at the room and what types of furniture and accessories are already there. The wall art should reflect the decor that already exists in the room. An easy example of this is if your entire room is based on an Asian motif, putting pictures and paintings of Paris, France wouldn`t make much sense and would be a design nightmare.
If the room has a particular theme, the artwork on the walls should reflect that theme. For example, if your room is based on a theme of classic cinema, wall art could include framed pictures of your favorite movies and pictures of old drive-ins and movie theaters etc.
The colors of the wall art should also complement the existing decor in the room. Unless you are specifically going for an eclectic or hodgepodge design style, clashing colors can make the room a design eyesore.
When it comes to artwork, if you are going for a country or laid back theme, pastoral and country scenes are perfect. If the room has a more modern look, modern art and clean lines fit better.
When it comes to photography, it too should reflect the feel of the room. What makes photos great is they provide a very clear idea of the type of imagery you want associated with the room. Black and white photos can provide a sense of nostalgia and mystery. Colorful photos can make the room feel brighter and uplifting. This is, of course, dependent on the subject of the photography as well. If you are going for a more serious tone, black and white often conveys that better than color.
Another aspect that a person should consider is the amount of art on the wall. If you have a large signature piece, then less is more. The large wall art acts as a focal point for anyone entering the room and having too much to distract from it can make the room look too busy. That being said, if you don`t have a single focal piece, creating a mural out of photos and other wall art can be a great way to create the signature piece without having a single picture.
One aspect of choosing wall art that cannot be stressed enough is that the art should reflect you. Don`t decorate the room based on what you think other people will like but on what you will like. Odds are you will be the one in the room the most, so you`ll want to put up wall art that fulfills your artistic passions & interests, and not someone else`s. Also, Try getting inspiration from websites such as www.forrestfurnishing.co.uk, or do a Google search for interior design tips.
Article by Amanda Haines, guest writer.
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on March 04, 2013 /
Ten Tips to Help You Update & Enjoy Your Favorite Space
Have you started to notice that your home could use a little bit of an update? When was the last time that you painted or purchased something new for the walls? Interior design does not need to be complicated. Anyone can look around and make small changes that all together create a new look and feel for the space. Here are ten tips to help you update your home and enjoy your space.
1. Change the Wall Color
It is often said that changing the color of a room is the least expensive way to get the biggest change in any space. Consider picking a focal wall and paint it a color that complements the rest of the space.
2. New Artwork for the Walls
If you have been staring at the same piece of art for an extended amount of time, you feel like your space is a little stale. Instead, look for a large piece that will attract a person`s eye when they walk into the room. Even small changes to the art down the hall or around the room can make a huge difference.
3. Rearrange the Furniture
Most people put their furniture along the outside walls of any space. In fact, it could be one of the biggest mistakes that most people make when they go to plan out a room. Instead, move things closer together to create places for people to sit and enjoy one another`s company. By moving the furniture, the space gets a new look and the residents get a new perspective when they sit down and relax.
4. Change the Lighting
If the room looks dark or isn`t very cheery, bringing in an infusion of new light can help. Lamps can easily blend into the background, or they can be a decoration in themselves. Lights on the walls or even coming from the ceiling can open up the space and create warmth.
5. Add More Color to the Accessories
Some people are worried about making a decorating mistake. To make sure that everything matches, they add in bland colors like beiges, browns and black to every type of color scheme. Don`t get stuck in a rut. Instead, choose colors that may not be prominently displayed on the walls or the furniture. Choose throw pillows that are a shade or two off to create more interest and depth.
6. Add a Rug
It is tough to completely change a room`s flooring. Aside from being expensive, it takes a lot of work. Instead, look for a large rug that defines a certain area of the space.
7. Move the Things You Already Own Around
Do you have a bookshelf that is filled with the same books, all stacked the same way? Change things up by creating different designs within the bookshelf. Take some of the books and lay them on their sides to create stacks of books. Add a favorite piece from around the room to sit in between the books. This is an easy way to update the space.
8. Keep the Things You Love
Consider tossing out some of the things that are cluttering up your space. If you don`t love it, toss it. Then, if you want to find a replacement, choose something that you absolutely love.
9. Adding a Mirror
If you have a small space that you would love to expand, add a mirror to one of the walls.
It gives the illusion of extra space and can easily open up a room.
10. Change the Curtains
Let more light in or keep more out with curtains. With the help of lined curtains
, you can add to the look and change the amount of light that is filtered in. Choose curtain colors that complement the room.
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on March 04, 2013 /
by Eve Pearce
ART FOR PHYSICAL HEALING
Art for Physical Healing
Nearly all people will recognise how art can be a comforting presence in their lives, whether it is as moral support or just something enjoyable to go and see. However, visual art has a potential to be far more than this. It is an amazing form of therapy for people with varied conditions, with a capacity to help and heal many aspects of the human body and mind. All of these benefits, from relaxation to muscle-development, can be attained while participants are enjoying themselves; by experiencing beautiful paintings, and by creating them for themselves.
Pain Relief and Quality of Life
A study which was conducted in 2005 examined the potential for artistic creativity as a treatment for pain and distress. The study involved patients fashioning art with a choice of different creative materials while they were unwell, and when most patients were asked they expressed that they felt less pain and distress as a result of having taken part. Research like this highlights how creating art can be an effective part of a modern system of pain relief.
As the previous article in this series identifies, simply looking at art which one considers to be beautiful can provide pain relief. This could have many applications in the field of physiotherapy where pain relief is relevant.
Many people may require physiotherapy to treat their condition or for rehabilitation after they have undergone a medical procedure. Physiotherapy is used to help patients after joint operations, for example, or to help regain mobility after a stroke. The main goals of physiotherapy are to increase mobility and relieve pain for the patient, often through exercises which manipulate a joint in a way which can shift fluid and clear obstructions.
Some patients can experience discomfort while they undergo these therapies; though, of course, the therapy will improve their condition and prevent pain in the future. The pain relieving qualities of art therapy can help these individuals with the discomfort during their treatment, while working alongside physiotherapy in a dual pain relieving relationship. As a result, the calming and diverting properties of art can help them to complete their therapy in order to improve their overall quality of life.
Physical Benefits of Creating Beautiful Art
One of the amazing properties of art is that the act of painting a picture can provide the painter with physical benefits as well as the well-known mental benefits. As a result, people who use art for therapy can benefit many areas of their body while producing beautiful work. Leading an active life, exercising joints and muscles, is a really important way of staying healthy and of getting better after a procedure or health problem. In modern times it can be easy to miss out on activity, not finding the time to flex parts of the body which can have great health benefits. Alongside eating a healthy diet with plenty of protein to strengthen muscles (which can be gained through sources like pea protein or nuts) and taking the prescribed medication, creating art can be an useful part of physical recovery. Creating visual art works joints and muscles in ways which it is hard to do otherwise. In addition, many adults do not take part in activities such as this and haven't for years. This means that art therapy can have great results for people with joint problems, for example, through painting, shading and colouring and the specialised joint-movement which these activities involve. Meanwhile, these exercises will seem far less repetitive and boring for the patients because they can gain the benefits while being creative and enjoying themselves. Meanwhile, they will have designed a personal picture which they will be able to keep, sell or from which they can learn something.
Overall, art represents a really important opportunity for people to improve their physical condition and to alleviate discomfort. It enables people to do so through an enjoyable and natural activity, one which can be affordable too. Using art like this is still a relatively new form of treatment within the medical profession, and in the coming years more information should become available through research. With more facts, physicians will gain greater detail on how people can utilise art in this way, providing for a more pleasant and unified treatment system.
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on March 04, 2013 /
THE HEALING EFFECTS OF VISUAL ART
an article by Eve Pearce
Beauty is the Most Effective Medicine
Visual art is a good way of relaxing yourself and putting you in a positive mind frame. Looking at a beautiful picture or moving image is guaranteed to raise your spirits and get you ready for life’s challenges. However it isn’t just a mental pick-me-up; research suggests that it could also have physical benefits for the observer. The results of a study conducted by neurologist Dr Marina de Tommaso and his team of researchers at the University of Bari in Italy indicate that gazing at a beautiful image can reduce the extent to which the viewer feels pain. The doctor and his assistants asked twelve healthy men and twelve healthy women to pick the twenty paintings that they considered to be the most visually appealing and the twenty pictures that they considered to be the ugliest from a selection of three hundred pictures painted by artists that included Picasso, Boticelli and Leonardo da Vinci. Short laser pulses were administered to their hands whilst they were contemplating these pictures, causing an unpleasant prickling sensation.
Art Can Take the Pain Away
The subjects also had the laser pulses administered to their hands whilst they were observing a blank panel as a control experiment. They rated the level of pain that they experienced as being a third less intense whilst they were viewing the paintings that they thought were beautiful than they did when viewing either the blank panel or those that they considered to be ugly. There was no difference between the level of pain that they reported suffering when viewing the ugly paintings and the blank panel. Marina de Tommaso concluded that by viewing aesthetically pleasing images, pain levels can be reduced at the cortical level of the brain.
Keep your Mental Health in Check
It isn’t only those who are suffering from painful ongoing medical conditions that can benefit from visual art. The findings of a study conducted by researchers at the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study Research Centre at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology indicate that it could also be useful for staving off depression and anxiety. The researchers collected data from over fifty thousand people who lived in central Norway and concluded that those who regularly viewed art at exhibitions were less likely to suffer from these conditions than those who did not. The same applied to those who regularly viewed films at the cinema, suggesting that visual art in the form of video might be particularly beneficial in the fight against mental illness.
Depression and anxiety are catalysts for a wide range of other afflictions including self-harm, alcoholism and drug addiction. The results of the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study Research Centre’s study indicate that if, for example, a drug addict lived in a small town in middle of the Arizona desert, where there was nothing but sand for miles around, he or she might consider booking into rehab in Arizona but feel too depressed to go through with it. Add breathtaking images of tropical Fijian lagoons and white winter mornings in the Canadian Rockies into the equation and it could be a different matter entirely. It might give an individual the extra push that he or she requires in order to get clean.
Perhaps the most famous advocate of the healing powers of aesthetically pleasing images was Florence Nightingale. She was fascinated by the effect that beautiful visual experiences had upon her patients and claimed that she had witnessed fevers being brought about in those within her care simply because they were not being able to look out of the window and observe the scenery. She stated that she believed that appealing images had a physical as well as a mental effect upon her patients and said that, ‘Variety of form and brilliancy of colour in the objects presented to patients are actual means of recovery.’
A relaxed mind is a healthy mind so it is perhaps little wonder viewing breathtaking visual art can keep people healthy and help to reduce the suffering caused by any illnesses that they might still contract. Images like the waterfalls of Havasupai in India or autumn sunrises in Tasmania are so powerful that it would have been surprising if they had no positive effect upon a person’s health. The sights we see define our outlook on the world and help to shape our thought processes. If our eyes are pleased, our minds are pleased, which is conducive to good health and happiness.
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