I’m going to rephrase an article written by Miles Hoffman titled DON’T FEAR CLASSICAL MUSIC. The rewording was to have this post relate to fragrance. Music and fragrance, as you all know by now, reside in the same place in the brain. Hoffman’s article is so well written, I had to adapt it to smell.
When you smell a fragrance you do perceive more than your own reactions, emotions. You observe changes great and small. You notice the HARMONIES, the RHYTHMS and the PATTERNS. You perceive, in short, virtually all the ingredients that perfumers and fragrance developers manipulate to stimulate emotional effects, which is precisely why you are emotionally influenced.
The “problem” isn’t PERCEPTION, it is description. It is the language, the technical terms for the ingredients and their management. And why should someone other than a perfumer or fragrance developer know what ingredients make that emotion. It is not essential to be aware of the specific ingredients by which your feelings are stimulated.
It’s not the responsibility of the consumer to understand the feeling through the ingredients. If the CONSTRUCTION OF THE FRAGRANCE IS DONE WELL, the user should enjoy it. Do we have to know the Latin name of a flower, or even the English name for that matter, to be moved by the beauty of the smell of that flower? No. Do we have to know about “blocking schemes” to be excited about our team scoring a touchdown? No.
THE VERY POINT OF SMELLING A FRAGRANCE IS TO BE EMOTIONALLY MOVED BY IT. NOT TO PUT NAMES ON WHAT MOVES YOU. LANGUAGE IS UNFIT TO CONVEY EMOTIONS.
DEBUSSY SAID IT IS NOT JUST THE MUSICAL NOTES THAT MAKE THE MUSIC, IT IS ALSO THE SPACES BETWEEN THE NOTES. IT IS THE FEELING.
Ron Winnegrad has been a Perfumer and teacher for 46 years. As a perfumer, Ron has been able to express the world he sees through a rainbow of olfactive and emotive visions. As a teacher, Ron has helped others to see fragrance through his own multi sensorial lens.