The appeal of aesthetics

If there’s one thing that can explain behavior patterns of everybody from hipsters with too much of Mom’s money on their hands to furries forcing themselves to watch cartoons intended for kids, it could be summed up as aesthetics. To one person a computer might be a piece of mass produced 90s junk, but another person enjoys that unique 90s aesthetic and nostalgia brought upon by a vintage computer with a unique design not seen anymore these days, when computers had interesting designs all around. Or a furry might be obsessed with a TV show written off as repetitive IQ numbing garbage simply because at least the show had really good character design.

To them, they’re interested in the aesthetics of these. They want the aesthetic of something, so they force their mind to ignore the fact that whatever they’re obsessed with was seen as garbage back in the day. See, I couldn’t make myself watch cartoons even if they’re being broadcast in the waiting room I’m in at the very moment. I try to tune them out, chances are it’d insult my intelligence without having anything of value and then there’s the whole self-image thing coming into play. But even then sometimes I’m obsessed with the character designs of them but it’s not my fault that the animation (and creative) industry consists of a bunch of people who went into college with ideas only to end up in debt and creatively bankrupt, ready to serve their corporate masters in the board rooms. If someone in the board room says you have to make a movie about emojis, you’re getting paid for it after all. Who cares if it gets a 12 on Metacritic, that’s what the people in the board rooms decided would be made.

But here these furries are wanting something more. They want a cartoon with talking animals that doesn’t insult your intelligence and maybe has a good plot as well, maybe something like Digimon Tamers where it “deconstructs” that genre or actually has a good plot at least. Instead of course we get soulless multi-million dollar movies about CGI characters running through levels for an hour and a half designed to shut up whining kids on car trips, with nothing of substance. Many kids have low standards too, it’s why they’ll sit around watching the mind numbing garbage YouTube suggests so it’s not like furries can get anything better. But furries are also incapable of creating anything of their own that isn’t just a fetish comic, so they’re left craving the aesthetics and character design of a cartoon. Hell, I even saw some internet artists into some niche finding this super obscure Anime that was not uploaded anywhere, was seen as a kids anime (so no sub group wanted to touch it, let alone release raws), was officially uploaded in Japan and geolocked, and wasn’t even released on DVD. Yet, there was some small interest in this anime online to the point where this group that found the anime would pop up in Google searches, as this anime featured a character archtype that had been growing in popularity.

They wanted the aesthetics of this obscure show, they were obsessed with it to the point of drawing fanart despite being adults, and that’s because they enjoyed the aesthetics of it.

Hell, look at how the Vaporwave meme had staying power. The music died off, giving way to synthwave influenced by it featuring similar aesthetics. The Solo Jazz cup became iconic along with the neon purpleish colors and fakeish analog distortion effects commonly applied to album covers. The look of 90s computing environments continued to be popular despite Windows 95 and Mac OS 9 being unstable due to their aesthetics.

But even if the source material is garbage, even if it aged like milk, someone obsessed with the aesthetics does not care about it. They are obsessed with the aesthetics, but often times they aren’t talented nor creative enough to improve on it. So they sit, idolizing something, creating a demand for something more. They want something influenced by the aesthetics they like but better. There’s a market for someone to tap into for anyone who wants to try to make a mark, and maybe get some money along the way. That’s why there were so many wannabe 8 bit retro games for a time, that aesthetic was in demand and developers capitalized on it until it was out of style (so to speak).

Aesthetics have a lasting appeal, keep this in mind if you ever decide to get into any field involving graphic design or art.

Jake

Jake

I'm a purple cat :V

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