This is where it gets fuzzy. Not all of the meaning that is imbued is done so via a conscious effort. I can't tell you how many times I've gone back to something I've done before and noticed some meaning that I hadn't intentionally put there. For example, take Zephyr's cutie mark (in my sig', also more clearly visible here.) I based that off a wing logo I found, but it's stuck in that exact form and shape since I first--ahem--'designed' it, back when her character was first conceived of. At the time I just thought it looked cool and denoted her defining talent; grace/agility.
She developed some other characteristics and backstory (independently of her cutie mark) as I continued to refine her character, but the cutie mark remains completely untouched. There's aspect of it that I realized in retrospect--with no small shock--that is a huge, huge, huge part of her character now, and that's the little beak at the end of the wing. Which has been there from the start.
Just an example of unintentional meaning, but yeah.
I need to get to bed soon or I'd say "Play LoL/Dota 2 with me". Work starts early tomorrow (and I'll get to bed as soon as this conversation with Zookz slows down...)
Sorry if this is too late of a reply.
That's exactly why I said the meaning is usually subjective, being based on experience. The meaning may be implied through specific means, but because we all have different experiences, it can mean something completely different to someone else, including a future self (since we do change and grow).
I gave this example in my stream. When you look at this:
The first thing that pops into most people's minds is anarchy. It's iconic, it has a trait bestowed upon it by the person who made it, whether accidental or not. But what if someone has never seen it before? They might just think it's an odd way to make @. The meaning is derived from ourselves, that's what makes it subjective. Though, icons are still icons, and when people put two different icons together, implications are usually made to push someone towards certain meanings. As a society, we have more collective views on things, which shapes the artwork that exists at the time.
You sort of have to understand that, at least when looking at the history of art, that anything anyone has ever made is considered art. Paintings, buildings, pots, symbols, etc. anything. With any piece of artwork, both the artist and the audience give and take things from the piece based on their own experiences. That's what meaning is about, and why it's subjective.
A great example is all of the pony artwork. It was made because of a specific movement and wouldn't of existed otherwise. Intentional or not, it also portrays something. I like to think that overall, it portrays sincerity or innocents. But that would be a more objective statement, wouldn't it? That's the only reason I said it's not completely subjective and has some implications of the artist whether the artist is aware of it or not. I mean, you can look at the symbol above and assume pretty easily what it's about, or at least some aspects of it, simply from how the brush strokes are made to look disorderly and hectic.
This actually just reminded me of why Zikah likes the color purple. I didn't mean for it at the time, but after thinking about it, I noticed that my favorite color was yellow, which compliments purple. At some level I must of known that but wasn't thinking about it at the time, just thought it worked well for her. I sort of continued that by making her eyes red, where mine are green.
Why does life seem to have the need to keep giving me and my family bad things. My sister just came out and told us she may have lupus or something that has similar symptoms (I forgot the name of it) but it slowly hardens the organs till they don't work.
That sucks Azma. If I remember right, there are more options if it's the related disease, rather than Lupus, so here's hoping it isn't Lupus.