What Does It Mean?
In more specific terms, the golden ratio is a constant that describes the ratio between two quantities. It equates to roughly 1.6 and is oftentimes referred to as the perfect ratio (hence the name) due to its neat structure both visually and mathematically.
Some of the first and most famous examples of imagery that uses the golden ratio are Michelangelo's 'The Creation of Adam' and Botticelli's 'The Birth of Venus.'
The history and fields of application of the golden ratio are very interesting topics that could serve as a base for an entire essay. And if you dig deep enough, you'll discover that it transcends the boundaries of design and goes on to find its place in science and even in music. If you don't have time to do the research on your own, there are plenty of 'write my paper' services that will gladly do the research for you.
The orderly fashion in which the theory of the golden ratio is frequently presented might make it look like a pretty constricting system. It's not exactly correct. Attempting to use the golden ratio in your art doesn't remove the creative aspect.
Even as you work within its guidelines, you still have a lot of space for a creative maneuver. The human brain will do the work for you. If you ever tried sketching, you might have noticed an interesting thing. It is easier to find the image you are looking for in a messy drawing.
When you see a bunch of lines thrown together, your brain singles out the ones it finds the most logical and pushes all the rest to the background. That's why you can frequently see artists putting down multiple 'attempts' of one element of the picture only to pick the one they like best and erase the rest.
Our ability to detect the golden ratio in the things around us works similarly. Your art doesn't have to perfectly follow its geometrical proportions. Use it as a rough outline of where the main objects in your picture should be.
Once you start working on it, you'll find that your mind automatically guides you to the golden ratio. If you stray from it, your art will register as 'weird,' 'wrong,' or 'imperfect.'
Breaking the Rules
So what happens if you don't want to conform? Will breaking the rule prevent you from creating good imagery? Not at all.
The golden ratio is one of the most commonly used principles. But it is not the only approach. Even if you decide to ditch the golden ratio, there is no shortage of other systems to organize your art by:
Rule of thirds;
Rule of odds;
Besides, art isn't a stable field by any means. It changes and evolves constantly. Moreover, some pieces of art refuse to follow any sort of known guidelines, as artists prefer to rely on intuition.
If you feel like the golden ratio doesn't do it for you, feel free to look for other means of expressing yourself. Art is a subjective and individual field, after all. Finding your own style is a part of every artist's journey.