Favorite Art Quotes to Motivate and Inspire Your Artistic Journey

What do you do when you lose inspiration and motivation? Every artist, novice or experienced, will need a little motivation from time to time, whether it's to get over a horrible piece of artwork or to conquer a creative block. Being an artist is not just about producing outputs. It’s also about allowing yourself to enjoy “input” activities for yourself— writing, reading, and taking breaks from time to time. If you need inspiration and motivation to get you started on another art project, here’s a collection of some of our favorite art quotes. Keep on reading to be inspired!

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When looking for inspiration, many artists go to the collections of well-known painters, authors, and other creatives. However, in addition to their great works of art, it is worthwhile to listen to the words said, penned, and shared by these significant persons. Many artists share art quotations to educate their audience and pass on their knowledge to aspiring artists. Since the dawn of time, humans have been making and admiring art. These art quotes honor all of the wonder and brilliance that art has to offer. Art can collect a moment in time and stir up our sensations, whether it's an ancient form of art, the works of the legendary painters of the Renaissance, or the leading artists of Contemporary Art. So, enjoy these art quotes from famous painters and be inspired to make the world a more wonderful place today.

Here’s a Collection of Some of Our Favorite Art Quotes…

“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way – things I had no words for.”

–Georgia O’ Keefe

It is a cliché in the art world that when words can’t speak, art will. Through art, we can recognize our emotions for what they are: thoughts, and we can use those sentiments to create art rather than enabling them to settle in our heads and take over our minds. This is a great quote to remind you that if you ever feel lonely, sad, or even depressed because you cannot utter the words or express your emotions, art is there to help you release your inhibitions.

A photo of a woman painting on a canvas

“Everything you can imagine is real.”

–Pablo Picasso

Can you imagine how extra mundane the world would be without art? The great thing about art and creativity is that it makes the impossible possible. Being creative entails being able to make associations and connections between different subjects. We are all born with the ability to think creatively and spontaneously and through creative expression, what we envision and imagine can be possibly made with a little help from art tools.

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“Art deteriorates when it is done for the audience.”

–James Pierce

One common mistake that artists make is that they create art for the sake of recognition, not creation. While there is nothing wrong with wanting to receive compliments for your talent, remember that the ultimate goal of art is self-expression; creation. Have you heard of the philosophy “art for art’s sake?” Well, it simply means that the primary or exclusive purpose of a work of art is to express the feelings and emotions of the artist who created it and not for other pursuits. Remember, recognition should not be forced.

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"We have art in order not to die of the truth.”

–Friedrich Nietzsche

Reality is oftentimes complicated and life is sometimes unbearable but art has become a sweet escape from it. For many creatives, art has become a comfort–both an activity and a zone that feels like home. Whether we create art or consume art, it has become a way of life; a healthy coping mechanism to remind us that despite the ugliness in this world, there are still some things–such as painting, poetry, and music, that make life worth living for.

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“The principles of true art is not to portray, but to evoke.”

–Jerzy Kosinski

Long before the age of modern art, traditionalism was all about portraying and representing reality. Thanks to legendary painters like Vincent van Gogh, Wassily Kandinsky, Jackson Pollock, and alike, they changed the way we create artworks forever. Rather than focusing on depicting what the real world is, art has become a way of expressing feelings through abstract, often incomprehensible forms. Such is an effective way to evoke the feelings of others, which may inspire them to create their artworks as well.

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“Every artist was first an amateur.”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

This quote is a great reassurance to beginner artists that all artists, including the Old Masters and the most legendary painters that we know and love today, came from level one. To be a great painter means you have to start from level one and then you start building your skills from there. Everyone has to start somewhere, no one is inherently born great in art so it just takes practice, patience, dedication, and perseverance to be a great painter like them. 

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“Creativity takes courage.”
 

-Henri Matisse

To be creative means to be courageous because letting your art be seen in the world is one of the challenging things an artist has to face knowing that not everyone will understand your passion. It requires courage and great confidence to let your artworks into the public — to expose oneself to being respected, loved and appreciated while also being criticized, ignored, and devalued. Yes, facing your worries, uncertainties, self-doubts, concerns, and life obstacles require bravery.

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“We don’t make mistakes, just happy little accidents.” 

–Bob Ross

Making artworks would be boring if you don’t make mistakes from here and there. There is nothing wrong with making mistakes, whether big or small, as long as you learn something from them– it acts as a pathway to discovery: to learn new skills, new techniques, and methods. Moreover, don’t resent yourself if things don't go as planned during the creative process, treat these events as an opportunity to learn and try something new.

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“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.”

–Vincent van Gogh

There are moments in our artistic journey where we tend to doubt ourselves– our creative abilities, our talents, originality, and skills. When in doubt, prove to yourself that you’re better than what your inner demons are telling you. Never be silenced and never allow yourself to be discouraged in creating artworks due to self-criticisms. When you start painting, you will be reminded how awesome you are so just keep on creating! 

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“Practice what you know, and it will help to make clear what now you do not know.”

–Rembrandt

The essence of being an artist is to practice constantly, besides, how can you be good at something without exerting effort on it, anyway? There is an adage that says practice makes perfect-- it is very crucial in art. The more you practice, the more your creative abilities will shine for you to express yourself better through the art mediums that you're using. So, if you wanna be good at something, work hard for it. It requires time and effort, a lifelong learning experience, to achieve the mastery that you're aiming for 

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Key Insights

We hope that you enjoy reading this collection of some of our favorite art quotes. Which among these inspiring quotes is your favorite? Let us know! Do you feel motivated now? We hope so! Now, go and create something great! Happy painting!

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