A Positive Surrounding for a Positive You
by Emily Clarey
As we reluctantly leave summer behind, and prepare ourselves for the long nights, chilly weather and pesky coughs and colds which accompany winter, it's important to keep our energy up! Even though some favour this season and all the joys it brings, many of us suffer from the feeling of SAD. With most of us spending more time indoors and at home, it's vital to create a positive environment at home that brings us happiness and energy.
For thousands of years the Chinese have relied upon the principles of Feng Shui to create environments that bring about happiness, abundance and harmony. They believed that objects and structures should be placed in relation to the flow of Qi (氣) “natural energy” so as to capture and hold on to positive energy so as to maximise your potential for success in all areas of your life.
Whether or not you believe in the principles of Feng Shui, positivity and well-being are now hot topics in all areas of life, including in the world of design. Not only are health professionals or your employers thinking of your well-being, but you'll now find architects, interior designers and property developers aiming to create ‘positive, energising spaces’ – interiors that influence your positivity.
Vogue has recently picked up on the trend explaining, ‘…Pinterest saves for positivity are up 430% in home décor this year.’
Vogue might have only recently cottoned on, but the Danish have long been aware of the influence of our home environment on mood. Famed as being the happiest people of any nation, they attribute at least part of their happiness to being surrounded by beautiful objects and good design. Obviously artwork is a key element of home decor and design which can have a huge impact on positivity and energy.
Image Source: Artzu
Artwork in the home forms part of creating an aesthetic which is personal, inspiring and welcoming. Studies show that creating and simply displaying artwork can promote positivity, self-belief and influence our emotions. Artwork has the power to bring a calming tone to a room, improve productivity or even provide a much-needed sense of escapism.
If you work from a home office, it’s worth noting that art can be integral to your creativity and focus. According to Dr Craig Knight, who has studied the psychology of working environments for 12 years; in spaces enriched with artwork, people were on average working 15% quicker and had fewer health complaints. It appears that providing a welcome distraction from daily routines can in fact encourage reflection and new ideas.
Image Source - Visual Therapy
A more obvious way of easily dictating the tone of a room and successfully promoting positivity is through the chosen colour of your artwork. There is an entire practice of colour therapy, known as chromotherapy, which explores the effect different colours and shades have on our mood.
Experts on chromotherapy believe colours are linked to different parts of the body and varying emotional triggers. For example, red is linked to blood, circulation and breathing, therefore, can be used as a tool to raise pulses and get blood pumping around the body. In contrast blue had historical associations with the Catholic Church and the Virgin Mary and therefore now has implicit connections with trust and tranquility. It is also associated with the vastness off the sea or sky and feelings of release. Because of this, the colour is now often used in settings to promote a sense of calmness and peace.
Image Source: sf girl by the bay
Textures and material also play an important role in creating a certain feel and aesthetic. Cleanliness and a lack of clutter are essential elements of any home designed for peace of mind and well-being and so many of us will favour the clean lines and sleek feel to modern frames or geometric artwork.
In contrast artwork or frames which incorporate natural materials such as wood or include thick texture can give us a feeling of comfort. The roughness and grain give us a sense of warmth that make us feel at ease.
Of course you should choose a colour palette and a subject matter that resonates with you! Match this with materials and textures that you enjoy and you’ll be on your way to a happier self at home.
Whether you long to look at a rolling landscape or get lost in the hidden patterns and shapes of an abstract painting, artwork can transform your home and create a positive, inspiring atmosphere which improves your well-being.