'Aesthetics' in general terms means 'artistic sense' or 'sense to beauty' (as far as it is concerned to art). Every person in this world has his or her own 'artistic sense' or perception to beauty which in some contexts is universal and in other, very unique. For example if a group of children were asked to draw a picture of a tree or a house or a scenery it would be obvious that all those drawings would resemble each other with the basic shapes representing a tree, a trunk, a house, or the mountains etc., This is because the children at an younger age have a limited perceptual knowledge, they draw what they are asked to draw probably from the pictures they saw earlier which is the only source to them. Their drawings are not really artistic. A child draws a picture with a hope that it would look 'beautiful' i.e. artistic - this is a universal phenomena. If the child has to attain uniqueness he or she should have a greater perception or sensation to beauty which becomes philosophical or ideal and it naturally develops with time. So, it is evident that artistic sense is directly related to perceptual knowledge which becomes the source for 'imagination' and ultimately leads to a person's individual 'creativity' that is best reflected through art.
Artistic sense as mentioned above is more or less integrated with human evolution in relation to the Nature. As Science says man's development is interlinked with nature, so is artistic sense. Man just cannot produce art straight away from his mind, he has to use his perceptual knowledge which initially comes from nature. When the Early man first drew a picture on the cave wall, he couldn't have been philosophical, just like a kid he started drawing with whatsoever little means of perception he had. His sense towards beauty (in this context, Nature) was limited or simply he wasn't artistic though he had perception, he wasn't a good admirer of the nature. This scenario is different from today were a person need not go to a beautiful place to produce art, he or she could simply make it copying from other artworks with little perception and some intelligence, he or she needn't necessarily appreciate the beauty in the nature to produce art. Man today understands art better than he did centuries ago and in the beginning he didn't even knew why he produced art yet he kept enjoying it, showing his culture through it, in ignorance until he thought it is compulsory to know and thus the establishment of a philosophy called 'sensitivity to beauty' took place with a concept that art is meant for appreciation. To be more clear this philosophy does not tell why art is produced but tells how it should be, all in purpose of artistic sense whether gained from nature or art itself.
(College assignment originally written in 2006.)