MUSE: A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

by William Ritchey

This expression has been marinating in my mind now for about five minutes and within those five minutes the way I perceive it has changed immensely. I feel that most people interpret this saying to mean that pictures are more descriptive than words, more real perhaps, but there's a few ways to look at it.

I present to you my messy thought process on the saying:

A thousand words can form an image, what the image feels, what the air around the image feels like. Words can create more depth than some art when used in a meaningful way. But if you put no thought into your words, a simple doodle might overpower a haphazard sentence.   

I also like to think the "thousand words" refers to how many different ways we can see art--the ways people choose to absorb it, critique it, hate it, or let it impact them in a way they didn't think possible. So, in some cases, a picture is worth billions of words.

You could also give an artist a single word, any word at all, and ask them to represent it in one thousand different ways. They would do so, using only imagery. Maybe a word is worth a thousand pictures.

Okay so that's essentially what my brain was thinking. But what if we forget all that and go big-picture on the whole idea of worth in regards to words and pictures? If you think about it, you cannot relate the two whatsoever. They are both priceless and they are both different ways of freeing minds. We as people in the creative community decide how much our art or writing will be worth. We decide the messages behind it, the effort we put in, and the emotion. So in the end, I've come to think that saying sucks. The way to go about life is to focus on the deeper meaning of something, not how many dollars, words, or opinions it's worthy of. Keep that in mind, and go create something awesome, youthlings.

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