Art and Music

Music Fish

Music is a big part of life. It is pervasive – almost everywhere we go, we hear it pumping through speakers. Whenever I drive, the music is on. Whenever I’m at home, the music is on. Whenever I’m doing art, the music is on. But unlike other activities, I pay special attention to art music. Do you?

First of all, art is one of the few activities I do that makes me lose track of time. I’ll sit for hours, painting or drawing. I’ll forget to take a drink of my beer, forget that my butt has gone numb, and forget that I was supposed to change the laundry 3 hours ago. But I’ll notice if the music stops. It’ll interrupt even the most intense session. So, I do my best to avoid having to change music during art. Streaming radio, CDs, or hard drives full of MP3s are good for that.

Second, if a song comes on that doesn’t fit my mood, it’ll distract me. That’s the drawback to streaming radio. You can pick a genre, but sometimes you’ll get a song you just don’t like. Then you’re jumping up to change the station every half hour, and that’s not conducive to concentration… plus it’s as annoying as having to flip channels to avoid watching ads. (I’m not the only one who does that… right?)

And finally, music can be so emotionally powerful. A song can fill you with joy, longing, sadness, or despair. You can find a song for any mood, and any painting. Have you ever felt inspired to paint something because of a song? Or have you had ideas rolling around in your head for ages, when all of a sudden, a song comes on… and now you just HAVE to paint that idea?

It’s hard to plan for the moods you’ll be in or moods of the paintings you want to do, but I have a system – I get a good collection of songs for that day set up on my MP3 player, hit “shuffle,” and press play. I make sure the volume knob is handy in case I want to crank something. The emotions associated with music are some of the most powerful feelings I’ve had. They’re up there with beautiful scenery, nature, and being with the people I love. Now if only I could take a vacation with those folks to somewhere isolated with impressive scenery and listen to music while painting… wow.

Post a link to a song that inspires you. Share it with us!

Here’s one of mine. [link]

Also, do fish actually have ears?

3 thoughts on “Art and Music”

  1. What’s an MP3 Player?

    Kidding. That’s a good idea, Meg. My music set up in my spiffy new studio is sub-par. I’ll have to see what I can do to improve that!

    Lately, the Johnny Cash channel at has been keeping me entertained while doing my art.

  2. Casey, Pandora is full of awesome, and if you’re not feeling too particular about your music that day, it’s a great choice!

  3. Music is such a powerful creative aid, I couldn’t do anything without it. Everything from Hans Zimmer to Saliva, it doesn’t matter. Nearly my entire “shoebox of ideas” stemmed from creative inspirations that came as a result of music.

    I could post a list of all the songs that are particularly creative inspiring, but it would be a LONG list… ;)

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