7 Art Styles for Beginners: Exploring Popular Styles of Art
If you’re new to the art world, you may not have a personal art style that’s unique and distinguishes you from other artists, and that’s okay. Even the greatest artists in history experimented with different styles before discovering one or two that made them stand out.
Art is a way of expressing yourself. As such, you can’t force it. If it takes years to find your unique way of expression, it would only mean more experience and perfected skills. As you grow as a person, you’ll grow as an artist and understand how to portray your vision.
You may not have a clear vision of your artwork when you pick up a brush, but you’re sure to find your focus eventually. But how to find your art style if you don’t even know where to begin?
The key is to experiment with different styles first to see how each speaks to you. The more styles you dabble with, the more opportunities you’ll have to awaken your inspiration muse and realize your artistic potential. So let’s explore some of the most popular art styles for beginners that you can start with.
Abstract art is non-representational, which means you don’t base your artwork on any real-world subject. It’s all about various shapes, colors, forms, gestural art, and geometric patterns that don’t depict anything real. Even a random splash of color on a blank canvas is abstract art.
The purpose of this modern abstract wall art style is to capture attention and inspire viewers. Since it is open to interpretation, this style evokes different feelings in each viewer. It also might be the simplest art style to experiment with, precisely because you don’t have to portray any object or living thing. One of my greatest discoveries in abstract art is Botto - a decentralized artist that generates art based on community feedback.
Minimalism focuses on lines, geometric shapes, and typically monochromatic colors. You can think of it as a type of abstract art, except it’s a style that depicts reality.
It’s all about simplicity and harmony. You can use it to portray people, buildings, landscapes, and pretty much anything else. Although minimalist artworks are usually neutral and impersonal, they can also depict emotions through reflections of various experiences.
As the name suggests, surrealism is an art form that goes beyond realism. Surrealist artwork can include dream-line scenes, unexpected juxtapositions, distorted shapes and figures, and pretty much anything illogical that surpasses realism.
One of the most recognizable works of surrealism is Salvador Dalí’s The Persistence of Memory, which depicts melted and distorted clocks symbolizing the passage of time. That’s what surrealism is all about - expressing your thoughts irrationally and poetically that breaks the conventional boundaries and surprises viewers.
Photorealism is exactly what it sounds like - reproducing a photograph as realistically as possible. It’s about capturing any photo’s essence on canvas to make it seem almost as if you shot it with a camera.
Photorealist artwork makes you do a double-take to see if it’s a photograph or a painting. It can include everyday objects, people, animals, still life, and anything else around you.
As you might imagine, fantasy or fantastic art depicts supernatural and mythological themes, creatures, and ideas. It can be pretty fun and whimsical, illustrating dragons, faeries, elves, wizards, unicorns, and any other magical being you can think of.
If you love the world of fantasy and fiction, this art style might suit you perfectly. You just need to let your imagination run wild and perhaps read up on fantasy literature to open up a whole new world of magic in your mind.
Cubism is a style of realism that seems a bit abstract in form and focuses on geometric shapes, lines, angles, and patterns. It’s about using squares, cubes, rectangles, circles, triangles, lines, and various geometric patterns to create fragmented compositions of people, animals, everyday objects, still life, and anything else that comes to mind.
Pablo Picasso is probably the first artist that pops to mind when you think of cubism. Just like all his artwork, this geometric art style challenges conventional representations of art. It features a single subject from different angles to showcase that things aren’t always as they seem.
Composite art is a blend of many different art styles. For instance, you can combine cubism, minimalism, surrealism, and fantasy to create something that dissolves boundaries and grabs attention.
This art style opens up a whole universe of exciting possibilities, as it has no rules and limitations. You can create artwork that tells a unique story from multiple viewpoints. You can create something never seen before.
Of course, that’s the case with any art style, but mixed art is a creative art form that’s entirely out of the box. The key is not to merge different types into one but instead depict each separately on canvas. That way, the work looks like a collage of several other paintings.
You can explore many more art styles, but these are ideal to start with when you’re just dipping your toes into the art world. They’ll help you develop and improve your skills, inspire new ways to express yourself, and keep your mind open to new possibilities.
So, set up your easel, get your paints and brushes, let your imagination and creative juices flow, and start creating magnificent masterpieces!