Aesthetics is what does not fit in your job description.
Aesthetics is what falls outside your ‘cutout’ in the world; job description, roles, the professional archetypes we occupy. Periodically we peek out behind them. Aesthetic is the pun a barista makes, a neighbor’s quirky fedora, or the apples a professor brings on the first day of fall.
Mono-aesthetic is no aesthetic.
Because aesthetic is where the world meets you, and both you and the world changes, aesthetic always changes. Having the same aesthetic is production, and production has no aesthetics.
Rejecting aesthetics is the worst aesthetic.
The creative must intrinsically exercise aesthetic. Rejecting aesthetic–by articulation–is a collective action. By rejecting aesthetic, one forgoes personal and all aesthetic. Normcore is a group activity.
Always look to be sufficiently misunderstood; constructive miscommunications ask you to understand your values.
When we confuse people, we ask them to restate their values and ways of being in the world. It is a prompt for creativity. The more we can place ourselves in a safe and generous space of misunderstandings, the more we will integrate our creative surplus into our ‘elbows’.
Ambiguity as an aesthetic
When we look at things anew, hold them to the light, we can’t know what we would see. Having trust in exploration can become a habit, a cycle of exploration, articulation, and integration. The act of writing and rewriting is creativity. Total clarity is production, and production is never creative.
Relational creativity is the only type of creativity.
Creativity is language. Aesthetic is meaning embedded in context. A homogenous world has no aesthetics; creativity exists in communication.
Creativity is decisions, and decisions are design.
Creativity is bringing language to unknowingness through a series of decisions that work in harmony with nature, culture, and business laws. The designer might author their meta-engine or use other people’s. The non-designer might do the same. Hence both can be creative or not.
Hence machines can design but can never be creative.
Machines lack the faculty of meta-flexibility. All models, or machine learning and other bayesian means, ask for a definition of correlation and, therefore, meta-fixed.
In abundance, all is philosophy.
When all matter is available, our innate tendency for interestingness and fun will find meaning through new ways of thinking and being. An abundance of utility asks for introspection. An abundance of technology asks for navigation.