It’s Music to My Ears

So, the current topic is music and it’s one that I’m especially interested in. For starters, I used to play music some, of sorts. I played the flute as a child, then later the guitar but also picked up the saxophone along the way (it’s easy if you play the flute) plus I’ve dabbled in a few other instruments. I play a mean harmonica as well.

But how does music (or, perhaps I should say does music at all) relate to visual arts?

I think there is some kind of a connection. I think there is something kindred connection between the creativity that happens with an instrument and the kind that happens with a paintbrush. For starters, there are many artists who can do both–many “crossover” types who both paint and play music of some kind. But I don’t think it’s just a matter of “if I do this, then I can also do that,” no, I think it goes deeper.

There’s something about rhythm and harmony. There’s something about patterns, about creativity, about balance, point and counterpoint. We both share the word “composition” don’t we? Why do you think that is? I don’t think it’s just the language either, I think it runs deeper than that. I mean, both visual artists and musicians share a way of thinking at times. It’s a matter of looking at the world and expressing it visually or sonically. It’s the vision (yes, musicians have “vision” too) it’s the voice (and, likewise, visual artists have “voice” as well) it’s the way we express ourselves and showcase the world, how we see it or how we want to see it, given our chosen media. I tend to think this is the same, regardless of what kind of art you do, right? I mean, interpretive dancers, musicians, actors, photographers, painters, sculptors, we all share in these things, we just use different tools to get us to our chosen end results.

I’d really like to explore this connection between the visual arts and music a bit more, and hope to explore this more over the course of the month. I’d especially welcome thoughts on the subject from those involved in either the visual arts or the field of music. Do you feel more connected to the visual arts as a musician or, likewise, for my fellow artists, do you feel more attached to music working with visual arts? It’s an interesting question to explore and I hope to do more over the course of future postings.

Until next time…


  1. Great Grandma Lin
    November 3, 2011 / 1:24 pm

    interesting, i think we all have a voice to be expressed whatever the medium-paint, sound, movement, word, etc. When I wrote my poems recently at the gallery it was so fun to see the images and listen to the quiet soothing music that was playing, it definitely put me in the mood to create. Also as a former modern dance, music was indispensable…

  2. mythopolis
    November 4, 2011 / 2:00 am

    Yes, I think its all inter-related…music can provoke feeling, feeling can provoke images, images can become art….and vice versa….

  3. Carol
    November 4, 2011 / 3:13 am

    It's all just art right? I mean, expression of self, feelings, emotions, all dragged out in the medium of your choice, I suppose. I know I have always been inspired by music and certain types of music really touch me in certain ways. Like, I love to draw to opera but seldom listen to it in the car. Likewise, I love to listen to jazz a lot but almost never when drawing or painting. It's almost an intuitive type of thing, I'd guess.

    Thanks for your comments. This topic is one I feel I must explore in more depth at some point but maybe this is a good start?

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