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Art Theme Ideas

A theme in art can be as simple as an appreciation of nature.
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Visual art can convey ideas, reflections, moods, feelings and insight without reference to a particular artistic medium or style of expression. For example, if you wanted to make a visual creation that related to the awe of nature, it would not matter if your project resulted in a two- or three-dimensional expression. Neither would a particular style be of importance, as you could work in an abstract, figurative, modern, naive or pixeled manner to create your image.

Mother Nature

Paintings and other kinds of artwork depicting the natural world and the great outdoors are so numerous that perhaps a suggestion of a specific theme might help the artist with the selection process of what to paint. When dealing with the outdoor environment, many themes can come to mind. For example, you could select one of the four seasons and use that particular time of year as an underlying current in your completed piece of art. By choosing Mother Nature, you open up a whole new set of parameters for your work, including the figurative representative of the mythological person.


Light and dark are two opposites, which can be applied as techniques in rendering objects within your painting, drawing or sculpture. Though very useful as artistic terminology that describes the art-making process, these visual concepts do not constitute a theme when used in this manner. However, when light and dark are employed in a spiritual sense, they then become an art theme. For example, light from a candle could be used to portray spiritual awareness or human warmth, while a darkened doorway might portray something ominous or threatening.

Rainbow/Under the Rain/Stars

Continuing with the nature emphasis, the three themes listed above have one common element, the sky. Here, reference to the sky is broad, for each theme recognizes the sky at different times and under different conditions. "Under the rain" could be either a daytime and nighttime theme but a rainbow implies sunlight, while stars indicate darkness or twilight. Still in all these situations, the sky can symbolize many different ideas and moods such as mystery, awe, silence or curiosity. An artist working with any one of these themes could take the image in any of these directions.


Eyes are usually needed to make a piece of art but they can also be the subject of the work. Eyes might be included as a small part of the picture or the artist may choose to have one eye or even a pair dominate the whole picture. Since the eye is so expressive, the range of moods and feelings that might be revealed with this subject matter is quite broad.

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