We live in a visually dominant culture resulting in a relative lack of auditory descriptive words and concepts. We will gain initial clarity through the use of visual analogy; with the use of language related to the visual domain in application to auditory phenomena and experience.
As a metalanguage, in analogy to metaphysics, music lies in an intuitive as well as cognitive realm beyond concrete, absolute or definitive linear expression. As well, there is an overriding aspect which lies beyond mere technical execution. In the attempt to express creative, intuitive and metaphysical ideas in conventional language, analogy and metaphor can provide an indirect essence of the subject.
Understood through intuition and creative gestalt integrations, metaphor and analogy are important tools of language, transiently engaged in an exploration/description of creative ideas which lie beyond the limitations of discursive language.
To ‘see’ through the eyes of an artist entails the perceptual development of increased color and spatial discrimination:
Visual Perceptual Elements
Hue (discrete colors r,o,y,g,b,i,v,m)
Chroma (intracolor variation)
Luminosity (bright/dark gradation)
Texture (surface quality)
Saturation (color intensity)
Spatial visual dimensions
Temporal dimensions (dynamic process → static representation)
Analogous Aural (auditory) Perceptual Elements
Quantized pitch differentiation
Continuous pitch variation
Timbre dynamic harmonic spectral dimensions
Volume sound intensity
Spatial aural dimensions
Temporal dimensions (dynamic process → dynamic, transient representation)
MonoChromatic pitch can be re-conceptualized as shades of PolyChromatic PitchColor.
The traditional written musical language can easily expand from a black and white, two dimensional system, to a multidimensional color based notation system, enabling an intuitive visual designation of myriad ‘shades’ of pitch color. This development would easily convey increased pitch-resolution melodic, harmonic (overtones and polyphony) musical pitch-color possibilities within the pitch continuum.
An intuitive and unifying polychromatic notation system would constitute a 21st century evolution from monochromatic music systems (combinations and contrasts of black and white notes), to polychromatic music systems (encompassing exponentially higher pitch-resolution ‘aural color’ gradations of pitch), along with seemingly infinite expanded pitch-color combinations and contrasts.
Timbre or ‘tone color’ can be abstractly referential to an artistic medium (oil, watercolor, pastel, clay, bronze…) with textural qualities described as brilliant, harsh, soft, warm, etc. Beyond noticing which instrument is producing a given pitch, timbre can be conceptualized and developed into an unending complexity of gestalt perceptions (i.e. interactive harmonics).
Optimally, the visual artist is able to creatively imagine and express through subtle hues of color, texture and dimension, an integrated perceptual resonance that can expand and deepen collective conscious awareness.
Visionary musicians can likewise refine auditory perception and expressively bring into collective aural awareness an evolution of sound spectra, encompassing emotional pitch/harmonic color and tonal/sound color (timbre) combinations beyond anything yet known or experienced.