01-24-2016 *Edited 04-25-2023*

by Thom Schoeller 1/24/2016

This article explains the benefits of using Nature & Landscape Photography art prints to induce calmness and tranquility into virtually any indoor space. The usage of nature photography as art therapy is rapidly catching on. Healthcare facilities, in particular, have discovered the benefits of bringing nature "indoors" as photographic wall art. Improved cognitive abilities, inner peace, mental balance, and even reduced hypertension have all been noted. Art therapy (Eco-Art therapy) also works wonders in private homes, as displaying nature photography and landscapes have a genuine benefit impacting your overall mood and mental state of mind.

Glimmering sunbeams are captured as steam rises off the mirror-like surface of Bench lake | Mt Rainier Limited Edition Fine Art photography for sale


On a chilly morning high up in MRNP, steam rises off the calm mirror like surface of Bench Lake - capturing the sun's glimmering rays to create beautiful sunbeams.

Eco-Art Therapy.

It's a new trend in wall art that has really caught on, and it's being used in private homes and various healthcare facilities everywhere. The therapeutic benefits of connecting with nature are far-reaching, and these same benefits have also spread into the "Corporate business world" one image at a time. It's a pretty simple process -- by embracing the serenity found in nature, and bringing it indoors - except doing so in print form. By gazing into a beautiful photographic nature scene, your mind reacts in the same exact fashion as if you were right there, standing in the scene. Let's first look at the benefits eco-art therapy within the corporate world.

Your workplace environment may quite literally be your home away from home. Typically, one may spend as much as half of your day in what is a mostly sterile, yet highly stressful environment. Office spaces are generally associated with chaos, background noise, and a bland manufactured environment. Working in modern day fabricated clusters is an open invitation for disorders such as stress, depression, morbid obesity, and various cardiac diseases, and is a distraction to our mental and physical well-being.

The Solution

Anyone that works in this situation knows that at any moment, you'll need a moment to decompress and get rebalanced. You'd never have the benefit of connecting with nature in any way unless you brought your office directly into the natural environment. Since we all know that's not a likely scenario, the logical way to solve this is to take a shortcut and introduce beautiful Fine Art Nature photography.

Create a theme by combining both vertical and horizontal aspect ratios on your wall space.

Nature Imagery In The Home

Here is where you can really make this fun, not only for the benefits nature art therapy brings but for the aesthetic value and décor purposes. It totally makes sense, the simple act of installing stunning fine art nature scenes on the walls of your home is the most organic way to decorate the space. The options open up because now you can choose imagery that you may have a personal connection with -- and the connection may have been shared with other members of your family. Perhaps some fond memories of road trips or excursions in any of our amazing National Parks. There is no end to the possibilities, and there is probably no better way to reconnect emotionally with shared memories while benefitting from the profound effects of nature.

Utah's expansive Landscape Arch under a gorgeous pink and blue sunset sky | Arches National Park Limited Edition Fine Art Prints for sale


The ever-so-delicate Landscape Arch photographed at sunset.

Scientifically Proven Benefits

So, what exactly are the benefits of Nature Photography as wall art? Inducing a feeling of calm and reducing stress . Nature imagery can induce a soothing Zen like calmness and relaxation response, reducing stress levels while slowing areas of the brain that control anxiety. Adding a few beautiful nature prints can go a long way to lowering your stress levels and improving your daily mood. It's scientifically proven that fine art nature imagery on the walls of your home or workplace has a significant upside. People that reside or work in larger cities far away from nature lack the frequent connection needed to help balance our daily lives.

A Spiritual Connection

Nature-based spiritualism has it's roots deep within us all. Something instinctively draws us to the natural landscape. It's like an unspoken peace. Regardless of cultural background, we as humans are bonded to and are deeply rooted in a love for nature and its beautiful landscapes. We are all connected as one in the web of life and cosmic energies. Mother Nature connects with our inner souls - which makes us feel grounded and more alive - while clearing our minds of stressful, negative thoughts. This shall help us in our daily survival, both physically and mentally, since then we shall have a way, “path” & “principle” to re-focus our positive thoughts and energy on.

A palette of blazing autumn colors reflect off the flowing waters of New Hampshire's Swift River | Stunning Limited Edition abstract fine art nature prints


A palette of blazing autumn colors reflect off the flowing waters of New Hampshire's Swift river in the heart of the scenic White Mountain National Forest.

Color Psychology - Chromotherapy

While we now know that gazing at a large nature print on the wall has a natural calming effect on the brain and an overall health benefit, there are other factors to decide what imagery works best. Color psychology reveals how different colors in nature affect our moods and deepest feelings. Shorter wavelengths, such as green and blue colors associated with streams, mountain lakes, and deep forests are very calming. It's easy to hear a gentle waterfall in your mind as you gaze at the artwork. Green is a restful color and represents renewal and rejuvenation. It is also particularly beneficial for the heart, lungs, and circulatory system. The color blue is linked to calmness and serenity. It is relaxing for the mind, body, and spirit.

Peacefulness and serenity prevail as Colorado's Bear lake basks in gorgeous sunset hues | Limited Edition of 150 prints by Thom Schoeller


A blissful moment from Bear lake in Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park. I waited this sunset out as long as possible, once the sunlight began to diminish the surface of the lake turned into a mirror. The absolute stillness of the moment was a treasure to behold. The cool blue's of dusk added such a calming tone to the entire scene.

The majestic presence of Mt Rainier emerges through mist at sunrise | This Limited Edition Artwork captures the mood and drama of the Pacific Northwest


The majestic presence of Mt Rainier emerges through the mist during the earliest stages of sunrise. This a personal favorite, and an artwork that captures both mood and drama. I was able to capture the moment as alpenglow (a natural phenomenon caused by indirect sunlight bent by the Earth's atmosphere) softly illuminated the peak of Rainier. The highest layers of clouds reflected warm pink tones, while the valley below was shrouded in mystery by a layer of fog.

The longer wavelength colors are warmer tones, such as a vivid sunset or a rustic weathered red barn in a country landscape. Warmer tones initiate positive stimulation and are mentally arousing. Hospitals are using reds and orange sparingly, but the focus has been aimed at stimulating appetites and helping with depression. Warmer colors are associated with joy and happiness, making them effective in children's rooms and even for cancer patients.

Pond Reeds and Grasses gently swaying in the breeze | Maine Abstract Nature Fine Art Photography prints for sale

Limited Edition of 100

I crave the intimate landscape, seeking out textures and shapes -- and allow nature to paint impressionist scenes through the lens. Here's one from a Maine pond, flourishing with aquatic grasses & reeds with lily pads floating on the surface. Warm autumn hues bounced off the shoulder of the mountain reflecting off the water's surface, and the rhythmic wave of the tall grasses -- influenced by a slight breeze -- swayed ever so gently.

My Personal Connections - Artworks For The Healthcare Industry

Starting around 2014, various people within the Healthcare Industry started using me to supply nature & scenic landscape imagery for their interior design. I've shipped my artworks to dental, medical, and other healthcare facilities on a consistent basis ever since. One of the largest installations I've been part of is the UConn Health John Dempsey inpatient hospital in Farmington, Ct.

Regarding my direct involvement, this was an "interesting" project from the outset. Plan architects already began working with another native Connecticut photographer months in advance of finding me. The purpose was to decorate 169 patient rooms in all. Upon finally contacting me directly, I was told the photographer had supplied hundreds of images, but not 169 high enough quality photographs to complete the room art project. They encountered resolution issues when it came time to "enlarge" many of those supplied image files to over 40" in width. I was told the images he provided were "soft" even at 20"

Project Art Directors also voiced concerns over the fact that most of the supplied images leaned towards stock photography, and not Fine Art décor purposes. They wanted bolder colors, dramatic skies, and more of a wow factor. The new campus planning design & construction project manager reached out to me in late February 2016 after significant research online. My specialty is high-resolution large format media styles, and I had suitable artworks from the Litchfield Hills region that could easily be made large enough for the Pano-lam panels. Rather than submit files for approval, I suggested they simply select the images directly from my website I was using at the time.

A painterly little pond surrounded by autumn foliage tucked away in the scenic Berkshires | A nature scene that brings serenity and calmness into your home
I photographed this scene on a moody autumn day, a light intermittent rain and a hint of ethereal mist hung in the air. The stillness of the ponds surface was interrupted only by the playful beavers that created the dam that in turn makes this secret sanctuary possible to enjoy.

I've found in articles posted to their own website quoting the many patients that have been reacting so positively to the art prints in their rooms. One of the patients had commented to a journalist, "the beautiful artwork makes me feel comfortable and relaxed, I feel like I'm home". The photo used for the article of this patient's room had one of my Enders Falls prints (the uncropped version below) installed over the bed on the wall.

Aside from the UConn Health inpatient hospital, I've been called on to provide artworks for dozens of professional practices, notably including the Cottage Hospital in Woodsville NH and the McConnell Air Force base clinic and pharmacy wing in Wichita Kansas. The demand for adding or replacing outdated artworks in the healthcare industry continues to grow and I'm proud to be a part of this ever growing movement. Thanks' to scientific studies, we now understand that exposure to natural scenery not only makes us feel better emotionally, but the effect on our well-being is profound.

Unleashing Your Inner Designer

In April of 2023, Redfin featured me in an article titled "Unleash Your Inner Designer With These 25 Simple Home Décor Ideas". I wanted to take a moment to reflect upon the idea of transforming your interior space and how it relates to calming your mind and finding balance. Not only does Fine Art Nature Photography in your home provide all of the health benefits I've outlined above, it also personalizes your space and allows you to make it the primary focal point of any room.

I can't think of too many opportunities where you can add something to your homes interior that not only rejuvenates the mind, but also rejuvenates your entire space the moment you hang it on your walls!

A gentle series of cascades tumble into a placid grotto under a canopy of thick and vibrant Connecticut fall foliage at Enders Falls | Connecticut photo prints

Enders Falls lies on the eastern fringes of the southern Berkshires. It is made up of 5 distinct cascades, each a moderate hike from one another. This is an Open Edition print

If you are considering adding nature & landscape scenes to any of the above-described applications, I am happy to assist you. My website galleries have a robust selection of suitable imagery, separated into collections to assist you in finding a theme that works for your taste. Additionally, I have several different print media options to choose from, most of them are contemporary frameless prints that arrive ready to hang the moment you unpack them.