What is Folk Art?

Surely you’ve heard the term “folk art”, but have you ever wondered about its origins? Folk Art Fusion explores the colorful combination of art styles present in modern folk art paintings. Learn a bit more about the art style below.


What is folk art?

Everyday people creating extraordinary works of art—this is the basis of folk art. Folk art relies on experience, community, and heritage rather than formal training. It is art that is felt rather than taught. Deeply rooted in tradition, folk art is an artist’s feelings, ideas, expressions, and customs brought to life.

The term “folk art” was used during the 1700s and 1800s to describe art made by craftsmen, manual laborers, peasants, tradespeople, and working-class folk. These artists were untrained or had very little schooling in fine arts, but some had practical skills that they learned on the job, such as painting signs or houses. Folk artists today continue to be everyday folk who use their acquired skills—and their imaginations—to create their unique works of art.

Because many folk artists have no formal art training, artistic rules such as perspective (drawing objects three-dimensionally in order to give them the illusion of depth and distance) and proportion (drawing objects so that their size and shape are harmonious to one another) usually are not followed. Folk artists often use simple artistic techniques, bright colors, and childlike perspectives, creating art as a means of self-expression rather than creating art that’s “correct.” This untrained style can also be called “naïve art.”

Folk art is truly art of the human spirit. It is continually produced by people of all walks of life and from all over the world. As long as there are people with a need to imagine and create, folk art will always be around.

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Folk Art FusionDiscover how to create colorful, contemporary folk art with a modern twist!
Folk Art Fusion explores the colorful combination of art styles present in modern folk art paintings. Learn how traditional folk art continues to influence today’s painters, and discover how to create contemporary folk-art paintings with approachable, step-by-step projects featuring traditional subjects painted with creative techniques and popular style, including flowers, animals, architecture, sugar skulls, portraits, and more. Colorful, contemporary, and inspirational, Folk Art Fusion allows artists of all skill levels to discover the joy of creating modern, global-inspired art in this time-treasured genre.