Graphical Mitosis – The Calculus of Beauty. (Prologue)


Preface – Petal Zero *

What makes a successful logo? Or typeface? Or painting? Or flower?

What seemingly invisible “scale” determines the success of such things? There must be SOME kind of connecting thread between all the “winning designs”, right?

Well. The answer is a resounding “yes”. Absolutely. Beauty, just like every other archetype & concept, manifests in patterned, reoccuring ways. There are explicit rules and guidelines that determine what one’s brain interprets to be……Beautiful.

It’s extremely interesting (and honestly — fun as f#&$) to delve into the microcosm of cognitive functions, and examine emotional reactions on the fundamental level. At one point I remember I had an apprehension about such analyses. I was concerned that an analytical deconstruction of the topic would perhaps diminish its impact on me. My fears were, thankfully, far from the truth.

The actuality was quite the opposite — I found that the more I wondered about beauty and aesthetics, the more lovely sights I could see. It was self-sustaining, self-propagating. Thinking about beauty…..gave me more of a reason to view it. To WANT to view it. To go out of my way for such sights. To………

…to truly enjoy them.

So, I thank you for having an interest in the lovely views of this world, and in having a desire to understand the world around you a bit better. I hope that my words and thoughts help your passion for beauty burn a little brighter, a bit more intensely and efficiently. And then I hope that afterwards, it may have been enough to spark your own interest in perceiving, pursuing, and even creating, beauty of your own.

Thank you for the interest in beauty. Your genuine interest itself is yet another of the magnificent bounty of beautiful things to be found in the world.

A.x. Tigo December 2011

So, you want to hear the real deal about Vampires. Well, here you go. They’re jerks.


Take it from me, the guy whose family is from the Transilvania (currently, Romania) region, has explored the catacombs of the REAL Dracula’s Castle, and has white-as-hell tan-resistant skin and strangely sharp canine teeth: Vampires are fucking jerks, for REAL. Everything you’ve heard about them is true…..technically. In a sort of fucked up third-generation-story-about-a-friend’s-friend’s-friend sort of way, yeah, it’s true. And the craziest thing about it is that the myth is LESS gory and horrible of a story than what i’m about to tell you about. Straight up, this guy makes even the most horrible movie monster into a damn Pokemon by comparison. So if you were already getting squeamish at “I vant to drink chur BLAD! BLEAH!” level of cheesiness, you might want to go read something else. Seriously.

This also happens to possibly explain the werewolf stuff too, if you look close enough. maybe. but that’s another story.

Surprisingly enough, the first story i mentioned on the only existing page linking to this, about me exploring Dracula’s fortress — the one that most people would instantly think of as the most exciting — is probably one of the least interesting cards in my deck. Not to say that it’s boring — I don’t tell or remember boring stories very well. It’s just not particularly interesting to ME, its telling is fueled by the interest of others. And yeah, I fully know that i’m referring to a story about this dude:


Hey, i have one of those.I tuned my ax a bit better, however.

Yes, I’ll say it again. “Least interesting”.

So, about how i know all this…..Both my mother and father are from Romania. It’s a small country in eastern Europe, which borders the Black Sea(in the near future this will be a link to a story about the black sea, aka Party Hardy Like Las Vegas But Its On the Fucking Beach Holy Shit). It’s a beautiful country with incredibly varied terrain. Rolls of green, verdant mountains covered in healthy forest, beautful golden plains stretching to the horizon….it’s really something. My favorite aesthetic feature would have to be the clouds, though. Growing up in LA, the contrast is ridiculous. I can honestly say that you have no idea of the true size of the sky until you’ve seen one like there is in Romania. (ok this is me manually stopping myself; i can go on for hours about the sights – aesthetics are my job. note to self: move to new section later, get to the fucking Dracula part already, this story isn’t about clouds)

You should see how it looks in full HD.In addition to the bright and colorful portions of the landscape, Romania is home to very deep, very dark forests. They happen to be particularly common in a particular area – an area that was formerly known as Transilvania. It may sound familiar. The word might make your mind flash to visuals of, what– Vampire bats shrieking as they fly out dramatically towards the camera? — oops, i mean your face. (Movie/cinematic imagery is the main reason for this whole entire cliche, by the way.)

What else. Spooky-looking castle, thunderclap flashing in the background, ominous landscape and maybe even a vampire that probably looks like Count Chocula? Well, that was mine — even though i know the story already. And now you will too, I guess.


After hearing the word “vampire”: Left: image in Female brain /// Right: image in Male brain. Neither are as cool as the original. See? Mainstream media ruins everything.Which one did YOU think of after hearing “vampire”? (Note: My captions have WordPress’s new”ToldYouSo” semi-psychic future-caching widget installed)I can guess what roughly half of the population may have thought of, and what their next google image search will be. (who are you kidding, ladies? just remember that not finishing this article would make the REAL dracula frown.)

So yeah. the cliches. all the stuff i mentioned has an actual basis in reality. I’ve seen it with my own eyes, and the reality is way, WAY more interesting than a box of crappy cereal.

The whole thing started with a guy named Vlad. No, not my cousin who is in a metal band(Dracula had a metal band too – but he was too much of a hipster to let anyone else hear the groove, probably didn’t want it getting too trendy and mainstream). The other one, who regardless of badassery, left a legend that eventually devolved into a mild-mannered story about sparkly lameasses. Vlad Tepes. Both of them were just rockstars by nature, though.


My friends who know me IRL are going to get a kick out of how this looks exactly like my dad but with 80s metal hair.But, this is where i stop telling you this story – you can look it up yourself. My fucking stupid laptop crashed, and it looks like you guys just lost a shitload of content. Damn, sucks to be you. Not a good place to be, in a story about bloodsucking mythical creatures. Watch your neck.

Oh alright, since you showed an interest, here’s the real story:

The fictional vampire Dracula in storybook tales killed a few high-class folks, set up his own blood bank, and frightened some peasants. The real Dracula believed in an old wicked lie, something far more gruesome and false than Bram Stoker’s vampire tale: The End Justifies the Means. He believed that his “noble” goal was more important than the cruelty he used to reach the goal. He was wrong. It’s possible that force and perhaps even war are sometimes necessary to push back evil. But we must always ask, “Whose evil, and at what price?” The loss of sense and decency and compassion is always too much to pay.

to be continued. Later. Maybe. Curious about something? Questions? Let me know somehow and I’ll do my best to answer.

-Andy X

References:

Excerpts and quoted portions from “Dracula Essay” by Jan Adkins
http://dracula-vlad-tepes.blogspot.com/2010/06/dracula-essay.html
for catching my eye with the perfect picture to use, and writing an essay that includes more facts than laughs so i don’t have to go dig up my pamphlet out of my adventure box, or ask my dad. Nice work mentioning Godzilla in your 4th sentence though, i got a good laugh outta that one.

Main Artwork – The Dangerous Art of Nick Percival
http://www.nickpercival.com
Awesome artwork, man. Including Bran Castle in the background was a nice touch. it really brought the picture together, shows a good, cultured sense of taste. and framing. The framing always changes everything, though.

and the castle mentioned is this one:

and do you want to know how i explored the castle of Dracula himself? By not being a fucking pussy – the off-limits sections were simply marked with plain ropes. Considering the stories, and seeing how everyyyy one of the tourists didn’t dare step across, I just remembered that I’m not a foreigner there – so i went on an awesome adventure, Scooby Doo-style.

“A VAMPIRE is, in folklore, a powerful and violent creature of the night who sucks
blood from his victims, though you can keep him (or her) away with a necklace
of garlic. Some doctors believe this tale … or at least a part of it. It is possible that vampire legends grew out of murders committed by real people with a rare blood disease, porphyria. In the small, isolated villages in the Carpathian
Mountains of Transylvania, where many families are closely related, this
disease recurred every generation or so. The blood of porphyria sufferers will
not carry enough oxygen to their brains. They lose their reason, often
becoming violently insane. At the same time, they crave red meat and blood for
its oxygen-carrying properties. They have been known to rip into victims in a
fit of pain and drink their blood. Other symptoms complete the tie with
folklore: the skin of porphyrics becomes painfully sensitive to sunlight, so they
come out only after sundown; enzymes in garlic can cause them terrible pain; a
skin condition related to porphyria is excess hairiness on the face and limbs
and even the palms of the hands, which could also explain the werewolf
legends, too. Sleep well. Was that a growl in the closet?” – Jan