What does it mean to be original

Updated: Nov 25

What does it mean to be original art
Original Art

The word original has many different interpretations. Some would say that to be original is to do something that has never been done before, Others might think of the original as being the first presentation or the unveiling.

Guernica 1937 Pablo Picasso
Guernica 1937 Pablo Picasso

Guernica is a large 1937 oil painting on canvas by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. It is one of his best-known works, regarded by many art critics as the most moving and powerful anti-war painting in history, it is exhibited in the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid.

Allegory of war 1638 Peter Paul Rubens
Allegory of war 1638 Peter Paul Rubens

above we can see the inspiration of Picasso by Peter Paul Rubens, in the antiwar Guernica vs Allegory of war similarity in the composition is obvious, with simplification and abstraction of details Picasso introduced the Allegory of war in a new style.

Picasso's Guernica is not Original!

To be original is relative, some paintings are original in introducing a new style, composition, color tones, techniques or even being non-subjective like Hilma Af Klint's abstract paintings.

Vincent Willem van Gogh 30 March 1853 – 29 July 1890) Dutch Post-Impressionist painter
Vincent Willem van Gogh 30 March 1853 – 29 July 1890) Dutch Post-Impressionist painter

Original Style

Creating art in a remarkable distinguishable way, to know who is the artist even without Looking at the signature, is a step forward in creating original art, the style includes the steps the artist took to create the artwork, whether it was classical multilayered artwork or an impression with a single layer of thick paints on the canvas, it also includes the color, was it realistic tones or fictional tones out of the realistic spectra, don't mention skill and time required to establish this style,

Original Technique

For example, in oil painting, the tools the artist used to apply the paint on the surface of the canvas tell everything, the brushstrokes on the canvas tell the pathways the artist walk through to get the artwork out from none to existence, any new technique the artist use is considered a step forward.

Original composition

The utilization of the two-dimensional space on a canvas, the interaction between the artwork subjects and the background, the color, and light transitions all these elements target the capture of the viewer's eyes and enhance the delivery of the artist's message, To achieve a successful composition is not easy and depends on the artist's ability to gather subjects, colors, and light to create a unique homogeneous or heterogeneous artwork, sometimes achieving an emotionally effective heterogenous artwork is much harder than a homogenous piece of art.


Creating an artwork that is purely innovative in all its aspects is not easy. but any step forward in the Art world boundaries is considered to be an original step.

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