Beauty is commonly defined as a subjective quality of specific objects that generates aesthetic pleasure in the person viewing it. These objects may include beautiful sunsets, landscapes, humans, and artistic works of art. Beauty, along with beauty and art, is perhaps the most important theme of aesthetics, among the many branches of contemporary philosophy. The term ‘personality’ is also used in the aesthetician sense of this word, in order to define things that are the product of a particular person’s personality.
Aesthetics differ in many ways, especially as compared to those involved in the physical sciences. Physical science uses observation and experimentation in order to describe how something exists or evolves, while aesthetics relies on an emotional response to beauty. This difference between aesthetics and physical sciences is most obvious in the field of medicine. In medicine, a doctor must take into consideration all the information provided by a patient, in order to diagnose a problem, and come up with an appropriate treatment plan. Aesthetic specialists, by contrast, rely solely on aesthetic experiences and responses to beauty, as their sole means of defining beauty. However, although the field of medicine has come a long way in terms of understanding and researching its processes, it still lacks a clear understanding of beauty.
Aesthetic theorists believe that beauty exists in the mind of an individual, rather than in his or her physical surroundings. The beauty of a landscape, for instance, is taken as a primary, subjective aspect of that landscape by the beholder. In psychology, beauty is also described by various theories as consisting of the strength of a relationship, the extent to which an object can be divided from its surroundings, the extent to which a person can separate himself from his own image, and the ability to form a personal connection with an object. Another important concept in the field of aesthetic studies is symmetry. It refers to the arrangement of items in a physical space that allows for easy observation and comparison. Beauty is thus seen as a collection of aesthetic experiences, each interrelated to the others, and each requiring its own particular attention and definition.