Beauty is often defined as a mental or physical trait that generates pleasure in the person who views it. For example, seeing beautiful sunsets is pleasurable, but seeing sunsets from an airplane is not. Beauty is subjective, and while there may be some agreed-upon general characteristics of beauty, such as facial features or hair forms, beauty is usually taken on an aesthetic level, and depends on the viewer’s point of view and personal preferences. Beauty is often associated with the culture and social class of an individual and is often seen as a universal standard.
Beauty is also commonly defined as the quality that makes objects pleasant to see. These objects may include sunsets, landscapes, humans, works of art and objects created by other cultures. For aesthetic purposes, beauty is the central theme of aesthetics, one of the most important branches of aesthetics, and one of the most important fields of study. In the broadest sense, beauty is considered to be the essential characteristic of all things. In this way, beauty defines art as well, since art itself is an aesthetic creation.
The idea of beauty is not a static or natural concept, as many philosophers have argued. In fact, beauty is not subjective at all, but is dependent on the observer. Just because something is pleasing to your eyes, does not mean that it is pleasing to other people’s eyes. Beauty relies on the human mind to interpret and appreciate beauty. Therefore, beauty is subjective and depends on the point of view of the viewer. However, beauty is considered to be in a class of its own, independent of culture and nationality.
The three broad theories of beauty are rational, emotional, and aesthetic. Within each class of theories, there are a range of definitions and interpretations of what beauty actually is, and beauty ideals. Each theory of beauty has its roots in the mind of the beholder.
Most people believe that beauty lies within the beholder, existing in him/her directly and not needing to be consciously appreciated. Others believe that beauty exists only in the mind of the creator. Still others believe that beauty is an objective quality that can be found in the product or service that an object is given by its creator, and that the beauty in the object simply reflects the value that the creator sees in his/her creation.
In general, then, beauty is defined as an aesthetic experience that is based on the point of view of the beholder. This may vary from individual to individual and even from culture to culture, though some basic principles hold true regardless of culture and nationality. For example, beauty can be considered to exist when a work of art causes an aesthetic experience that is pleasant to the individual who beholds it. If it causes such a pleasant experience that it leaves an aesthetic after-image, then beauty is considered to have been attained.