Andrei Tarkovsky On Being An Artist

April 04, 2021 - 2 min read

Andrei Tarkovsky is a famous Russian filmmaker, theatre director, writer, and film theorist. He is known as "a poet of cinema" and his attitude to portraying time. Tarkovsky's unique artistic style made him one of the most influential filmmakers of all time.

Among many, I picked 5 things you can learn from him.

Learn to love solitude

"The individual must learn to be own his own as a child, for this doesn't mean to be lonely: it means not to get bored with oneself". Tarkovsky thought that our pursuit of avoiding the "boredom" of being alone by putting ourselves into a noisy and even aggressive environment is a very dangerous symptom.

Target emotions into action

Tarkovsky believed that “Some sort of pressure must exist; the artist exists because the world is not perfect." We shouldn't be afraid of our emotions and use them as a tool in our art. "Art is born out of an ill-designed world.”

Impostor Syndrome is why you write

“A man writes because he is tormented, because he doubts. He needs to constantly prove to himself and the others that he’s worth something. And if I know for sure that I’m a genius? Why write then? What the hell for?”

Don't convey ideas, show life

"Show them life, and they’ll find within themselves the means to assess and appreciate it." The golden "Show, Don't Tell" rule was for Tarkovsky also the way of portraying emotions on the screen. He thought that every piece of art has a limitless number of interpretations. Showing life allows every viewer to derive their own meaning from the film.

Build immersion

Tarkovsky's films known for their slow pace and enigmatic and even hypnotic atmosphere. He had a unique philosophy of time in cinema and the importance of portraying it as it exists in real life. “The film [Stalker] needs to be slower and duller at the start so that the viewers who walked into the wrong theatre have time to leave before the main action starts.”

← Back to the index