Nature has inspired some pretty cool inventions. And lots of art. My guess is that Mother Nature is the muse to a lot of artists of all types.
How often do you see something in the natural world and marvel at the design of it? The way a hummingbird can hover and maneuver is pretty amazing. Have you watched a hawk dodge tree branches while in pursuit of quarry? I can imagine that some of our military aircraft might have been designed to mimic that ability. I think a lot of our inventions are inspired by nature.
Here’s one inspired by kestrels, those fierce little predator birds – Kestrel inspires unpowered, autonomous glider to climb higher.
And I believe this one was inspired by the flight of hummingbirds:
Our entire medical field is inspired by nature – the nature of how our bodies work, and how things like illness, cancer, and viruses work. Like it or not, these things are all part of nature, unless someone was inspired to create something in a lab to mimic nature.
Once a thing has undergone several iterations, it may be more difficult to see any inspiration nature might have offered. While vehicles are made of steel and aluminum (and sometimes lots of plastic), I still see nature reflected in the names of models (Jaguar, Viper, Mustang are a few names that come to mind).
Art Inspired by Nature
As I mentioned above in the inventions section, the kestrel was inspiration for some inventor somewhere. These birds inspired some of my first artworks, too.
Most of my art is inspired by nature. Sometimes that’s directly evident, because the subject is something from nature.
Whether it’s a landscape, wildlife, or the rustic degradation that depicts our human past, I get a lot of ideas from just observing nature. Even the paintings from my fantasy series is influenced in the same way.
Humans are Tied to Nature
We may be far removed from anything we think of as natural when we live in cities and high-tech environments. But humans are members of the animal kingdom, and even our behavior is ‘human nature’. Personally, I think it’s healthy and good to reconnect to nature on a more basic level, as often as possible.
I can easily do this because of where we live and my way of life. The very act of making my art means that I interact with nature, which begins with the gathering of rocks. For those who have less access to wilderness, there are ways to connect. Some of my older blog posts were dedicated to this subject. I’m going to dig around for them and start republishing them, I think. Art is one way people can foster a connection with nature, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re the creator of it or a collector. Bringing images of nature into your home is a great way to stay in touch with the Earth.
Are You Inspired by Nature?
Does nature inspire you? Do you feel too far removed, or are you always finding ways to interact? I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on how nature is at play at large, too. What is it about the Universe and life away from our own planet that might be considered ‘natural’? Wouldn’t it all be, since we’re not out there creating man-made things yet? Or perhaps this way of thinking is anthropocentric. Nature doesn’t need human interaction at all in order to exist. But I think we wouldn’t exist long at all without nature.
Madison Woods is a self-taught artist who moved to the Ozarks from south Louisiana in 2005. In 2018 she began experimenting with watercolor painting, using her local pigments. She calls them Paleo Paints, and her artwork features exclusively the lightfast pigments foraged from Madison county, Arkansas. Her inspiration is nature – the beauty, and the inherent cycle of life and death, destruction and regeneration.
Her online portfolio is at www.MadisonWoods.art.
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