Ever looked at an abstract painting with brush strokes of blue hues, lines and areas colored in pale cream to golden shades, like the one above?
I bet you instantly interpreted the scenery to a feeling of warmth, calm, your own beach memories and a yearn to be back soon. Or something like it…
We humans have this unique capacity to evoke specific thoughts, internal images and feelings based on forms, images and symbols. This capacity makes it possible for us to experience nature through a multitude of images and other aspects of nature that were transformed from their original state.
Anything that links us to our evolution in nature can evoke a positive outcome on our wellbeing. If we like it or not, nature is within us, unconsciously we are drawn to the familiar.
Biophilia and Biophilic Design
This phenomenon is called biophilia – the innate human instinct to connect with nature and other living beings. Creating indirect experience of nature through design is part of a design approach called Biophilic Design. It is one of three design categories to recreate the essence of powerful nature experiences at home. The three categories are
- Direct Experience Of Nature,
- Indirect Experience Of Nature,
- Experience Of Space and Place.
These categories were developed by Stephen R. Kellert, known as the godfather of biophilic design. This post describes the second category indirect experience of nature. For a short general introduction to Nature Inspired Home Décor for Wellbeing, read my blog post How To Harness the Magic Of Nature For A Happier & Healthier Home.
Find out more about biophilic design in my post Nature Inspired Décor For Your Wellbeing – It’s A Mindset Not A Style.
Examples include photographs or artwork of landscapes, wood furnishing, natural textiles such as linen or wool, any decoration with botanical or animal motifs, shells, spirals and any other organic shapes as abstracts or realistic.
What I find especially appealing are materials that show the patina of time and change their looks over time, like copper or wood. Or simply buy used things that have aged well. It grounds me almost as much as the smell of a handful of soil.
Decorating with indirect natural experience is the next best thing after bringing natural experiences directly into your home. These design features that rely on images, other representation of nature, and anything that has been transformed from its original natural state. They include:
Images & Other Representation of Nature | Natural Materials Texture | Natural Colors Naturalistic Shapes and Forms Information Richness | Age, Change & Patina of Time | Natural Geometries | Simulating Natural Light and Air
Read my introduction to nature-inspired home décor and my blog posts about the other two nature experiences for your home decoration projects: