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 Golden Mean

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:27 pm

Thanks for the article, Janet.

I guess I've gotten off track here. Whether we use the golden mean or not, do we seek it out when we look at art? Does our brain automatically try to find that pattern in the things we look at?
From the first article:

"We really want to get on, we don't want to get headaches while we are
scanning and recording and understanding things," he said. "Shapes that
resemble the golden ratio facilitate the scanning of images and their
transmission through vision organs to the brain. Animals are wired to
feel better and better when they are helped and so they feel pleasure
when they find food or shelter or a mate. When we see the proportions
in the golden ratio, we are helped. We feel pleasure and we call it
beauty."


So if an artwork or photo doesn't conform to the golden mean - does the composition feel "off". Do non-artists prefer compositions based on the GM to other compositions? Have artists just had this drilled into us so often that we do prefer it - or are we all (non-artists, everyone) genetically programmed to seek out the GM?

In the photo above, the road runs up the middle of the pic. I'm sure if I had painted that scene, there would be other artists that would tell me I should have shifted the road off-center, maybe changed the height of the tree groups or bring one forward, put one back....
I don't want to over analyze any one picture, I'm more interested in the "big picture" In general, does the author/scientist of the first article (1st post) have it right?
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:23 pm

I think the article Janet put a link to, shows that there are several approaches and that the Golden Mean is not the only one that people find comfort in. Callie you used the symmetrical approach in the waterfall painting, but you also followed the rule of having things point to the focal point to draw you to it. So you followed someone else's rule and with good justification. Also as David pointed out about the road photo, you might change the contextual point of being on the road if you changed the position of the waterfall.

Judy

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dbclemons



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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Sat Jan 02, 2010 5:25 pm

Many artists have likely never heard of it or may disregard it as old fashioned. It forces a very specific framing that some would find too confining. From a cultural point of view, many people wouldn't know a golden mean from one made of pyrite. Chinese scrolls are no less beautiful without it. It would be wrong to assume that all people find it necessary or that it's a natural order of things. Any sort of design is artifical.
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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Sat Jan 02, 2010 6:00 pm

Thanks David. I had wondered if the GM theory applied to everyone, or if different cultures might see things differently. There's some pretty drastic differences in music around the world, so it would seem that there could also be differences in what people find visually pleasing.
I think I'll go for the Pyrite (golden mean lite!), if the real thing happens, it will be by chance, rather than because "that's the right way". I scrapped a plein air painting (that I liked), because some rocks in the foreground had ended up in the center of the scene - couldn't have that!
Another go at the same scene, I kept the rocks in place, off to the side and ended up with a blah scene that just begged to be gessoed over.
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Dale

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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:52 pm

[img]http://watersolubleoils.forumotion.com/talk-about-art-painting-f13/
[/img]I found a German artist who painted quite a few centre-focused pieces, and they were great. Casper david Friedrich
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Thu Feb 04, 2010 12:06 am

Dale, Good example! I think it looks great! Smile

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Fri Feb 05, 2010 1:30 pm

Thank you for that example! I have that painting on a bookmark that I use all the time. Love his work! And never was aware of all the centered compositions. I think they work very well - I wouldn't say they'd be better with the subject shifted off-center. Here's another of his:
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:33 pm

That's a beautiful moody painting with another great example of the focal point being in the center. He obviously knew how to break the "rules" and make it work. Smile

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Dale

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PostSubject: Re: Golden Mean   Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:39 am

I discovered his artwork when looking for a solution for one of the mystery challenges. One of the positive things about searching for artwork, you get to explore some great art
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