What makes something beautiful? What if we told you beauty could be explained through math?

If you take any number greater than 1 in the Fibonacci sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, and so on where each number is the sum of the two previous numbers) and divide it by the previous number in the sequence, you get a value that approaches the Golden Ratio, which is approximately 1.618. So 2/1=2, 3/2=1.5, 5/3≈1.67, …, 987/610≈1.618…continuing to infinity.

But as we’ve all asked ourselves in math class, “Why do we need to know this?”

It turns out that we are constantly surrounded by the Golden Ratio. These spiralling patterns can be found in obvious objects like the human ear, sunflowers, snail shells, pinecones, hurricanes, galaxies, and in more ambiguous objects like tree branches.

Given the beauty of nature and the prevalence of this mystical number in nature, many artists, including Leonardo DaVinci, Salvador Dali, and Michaelangelo, have used the Golden Ratio to achieve more aesthetically pleasing works of art.

Left: Leonardo DaVinci’s “The Annunciation”; Right: Michaelangelo’s “The Creation of Adam”

There are many unknowns when it comes to the Golden Ratio, but one thing is for sure: it is pleasing to the human eye. So, whether you’re an artist looking to up your aesthetics game, a poet, or an architectit’s worth a shot to include the Golden Ratio in your creations.