Finding Yourself Through Emotion

In life, we all strive to find evidence of who we are.  We spend countless hours trying to crack the code of our personalities, experimenting, to see what kind of person we truly are. This blog is about finding one’s self through emotion and how we came to appreciate the complex ideals behind artistic expression.

Teens across America are constantly having struggles with how they present themselves in public. They ask themselves, “How should I dress today”, or “How should I act to make my mentality acceptable to others”.  In modern day society everyone wants to be accepted.  This mindset is most likely caused by the conception of likability being closely related to power, and since history has illustrated the great lengths people will go to for power, it doesn’t take much explaining to show why this is a problem.  The Wall Street Journal has written a article about the teenage brain, which could help you if you’re having trouble understanding.

All throughout our adolescent years, we have strived to uncover how society views others and how social norms can influence a change in the behavior of ordinary people. We then found that many people share common characteristics, present in many forms of media and literature. Whether it be a love of music or a passion for artistic composition, there was always something others around us could relate with. With this in mind, we began to develop an intense liking for artistic expression.  Whether it was new or old, we thoroughly enjoyed how much could be said in a seemingly minor piece of art.

We then began to recognize patterns of different concepts being expressed.  We saw emotions everywhere we looked, from sincere loneliness to the most enthusiastic versions of happiness.  All of a sudden, we realized why people relate to a work of art.  It wasn’t the beauty of the colors or the complexity of the music, but the emotion expressed through the art.  

With this new found knowledge we saw art in a new light.  It wasn’t just about colors or notes anymore, it was about the emotion and feeling the composer was trying to express. And it was through these emotions that people could relate and discover a deeper more vulnerable side to themselves. 

It was always easier for us to define our personality asking ourselves thought inducing questions such as:

  1. How do people see me? Do they find me fun to be around, quiet, provoking, or humble?
  2. What sparks my interest? Examples include music, sports, games, architecture, and much more.
  3.  How am I different from those around me? Who can I closely relate to? How do I see that person?

Asking ourselves questions like these, we found the truth that influences how we act in society.

Emotional depth of each piece of music.

Down in the River to Pray:

(University of Texas Tuba/Euphonium Studio)

https://youtu.be/lMl0kxzf4YU

The Overall feeling of this piece can only be described as a gentle journey.  It flows, giving the listener an accurate illustration of how the river would actually look.  What we like most about this arrangement is how warm the music feels, the Tuba and Euphonium really allow the listener to physically feel the music.  So the overall feeling of this piece is fulfillment, tranquility, and closure.

Pathetique Third Movement:

(Barenboim on Beethoven)

https://youtu.be/lJpSqC86vaw

What’s really intriguing about this piece, is the conflicting personalities presented by the composer.  On one hand, you have a technical, fast section, which provides an attitude of positivity and happiness.  Then, on the other hand, the music gifts the listener with segments of dark, heavy emotion that disagree with the previous message.  So, what does it mean?  We believe the piece to be the mission of life, with highs and lows throughout its troublesome journey.  

Four Seasons: Winter:

(Antonio Vivaldi)

https://youtu.be/TZCfydWF48c

For this section, we are mainly going to focus on the first segment of Vivaldi’s winter primarily because, it’s our favorite, and we think its message poses an intriguing discussion.  What stands out in this section, for us, is the fast, energetic chorus that really gives body to the piece.  It fills you with energy, almost to the degree of anger.  The best word we can use to describe it, is ambition.  It’s the kind of ambition that makes the listener want to work, to do something, and live the day at its maximum potential.  For more about Vivaldi and the Four Seasons click here..

The Scream:

(Edvard Munch)

Image result for the scream

The overall tone of this piece is undoubtedly fear and uncertainty, but these feelings aren’t just describing the presented character.  The feelings are also used to describe the audience.  The piece presents more questions than answers like, why is the man screaming, who are the figures in the background, and why are bright, warm colors used to describe a scene of such darkness.  These questions open the piece to interpretation and allows just the right amount of imagination to seep through.  This means the story isn’t dependent on the artist’s imagination but rather leaves the journey up to the audience.  For more information about The Scream click here.

Conclusion

Most of the emotions, we just described, are useless, it’s the feelings that impact and resonate with you that are the most crucial.   These long lasting emotions are like mirrors, reflecting elements of your own personality back at you.  Then, when you finally come face to face with these emotions all the protective barriers fall apart and you are left with a beaming image of who you truly are.  This gives you a chance to accept yourself, or to neglect your image and live the rest of your life as a hollow shell once filled to the brim with potential.

We are going to leave you with one final question: What piece of art or literature has impacted you the most? Why?

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