The Golden Ratio – Where it started and where it’s headed

20130206_21182520130207_002432 The Golden Ratio, a concept I was first introduced to in my high school pre-calculus class, by my favorite math teacher Mrs. Illesley (if you’re reading this forgive me for the spelling..), from Great Britain with her lovely accent. Well before absolutely loving this concept and its connection to nature, my fave subjects as a child were always math and art. It’s an odd combination, I admit, of fine art, bio, chem, physics and math for  O’Levels; usually students just took all sciences or math with business courses, or all arts’ courses. People found math and art contradictory to each other.

The golden ratio is the perfect explanation for such an anomaly: art requires us to learn to draw in proportions, and recognize patterns, only because proportions and patterns are present in nature, in the most abstract presentations. In a class for the Architectural Science program, we learned more about the golden ratio and how it was the essence of the construction of a snail’s shell, even though we don’t see it happen, nor is there proof that I know of, that the snail thinks about applying the golden ratio to formulas for building something cozy to sleep in.

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A professor once said that architects use this (the golden ratio) all the time in their building designs. I understood the significance better when I read the studies quoted in our textbooks, which stated that marketers design containers and bottles using these ratios (length = golden ratio * width, etc.) to make them correspond to human proportions. This makes them more appealing visually (attracts buyers without them knowing the reason) and physically (to hold, for instance). This follows the science that constructed the Vitruvian Man.

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It’s aboutz to get technical: The fingers-to-palm ratio is a multiple of the golden ratio, and just fr
om a few measurements and using this magic number in our calculations we can create an self-portrait, head-to-toe, voila, you have created a clone of yourself on paper. You can also take it further with the move the girl makes in Lionel Richie’s “Hello” video and create a sculpture-clone of your significant other, without them being there in front of you. I’m sure archaeologists used this very technique to create that famous reconstructions of the neanderthals. It works!at marketer design containers and bottles using these ratios (length = golden ratio * width, etc.) to make them correspond to human proportions, this makes them more appealing visually (attracts buyers without them knowing the reason) and physically (to hold, for instance). 

 

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                       Of course, the person who came up with the “Vitruvian man” and “paint by numbers” also had similar epiphanies, like many others, for which I might be sounding like I ownzzz it. I don’t mean to. I just LOVE the concept and integration of math and art that people seem to, so often, overlook. And I want to bring more light to these aspects and show them in the context of real life; through this blog and my paintings, I will attempt to share my inspiration for life with all y’all.

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