Archives for posts with tag: minimalist

Not speaking to strangers is a lesson learned early and practiced often, but this fascinating ongoing photography series flies in the face of such prudence. Mumbai-based photographer Jay Weinstein attempts to break down barriers during this particularly vigilant time in world history, one smile at a time. Aptly titled “…so I asked them to smile”, this minimalist photography project explores the smiles of strangers, and how facial expressions truly transform perceptions and soften even the most hardened of appearances. Weinstein captures strangers in two different poses: one without a smile and one while smiling. See for yourself… with no other context (Weinstein does not provide life stories, names, occupations, confirmed religions or ethnicity), it’s striking to see how a simple smile can humanize a perfect stranger. Weinstein describes the genesis of this compelling sociological experiment in his own words: “December 2013. I was on a photography trip to Bikaner, in the deserts of Rajasthan, India. Near the busy train station, I saw a man I wanted to photograph. I hesitated. The look in his eye and his stony, stern face intimidated me. It’s always that moment of hesitation that kills a shot! I ended up avoiding him and photographing other subjects until I heard his jovial voice, “Take my picture too!” Camera lens focused, my finger poised to fire. ‘Smile’, I called out. And he was transformed. His face radiated warmth, his eyes sparkled with a humor I had completely missed. Even his posture softened. I knew then what my next project would be. So I asked them to smile was born. I wanted to document the effect of the human smile on a strangers face.”

Via soiaskedthemtosmile.com

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Barcelona design firm Hey Studio has a thing for pop culture and illustration. They married these two loves into a fruitful serial project (others here and here and here) that has boosted their social media presence to over 50K Instagram followers. Though the project, called EveryHey, seems to have since ceased, Hey Studio posted over 400 minimalist illustrations of a very wide variety of pop culture figures, from Prince to Parker Lewis, to Baywatch babes to Beyoncé. We love Hey Studio’s bold, colorful style, and their smart choice of details to make each illustration just recognizable. This is a very small sampling, so be sure to check out the entire collection online or in their EveryHey book (available here).

Via Instagram

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We have a certain fondness for Scandinavian design; what’s not to love when functionality and simplicity converge? These characteristics extend through many facets of design, including architecture, furniture, household objects, and, of course, photography and graphic design. So it’s no wonder we’re so taken with this series of photographs by Danish photographer Mikkel Jul Hvilshøj. Commissioned by iconic, high-end Danish housewares brand Eva Solo, Hvilshøj captured these fantastic “visual recipes” in such a way that they could honestly stand on their own based on artistic merit. Hvilshøj’s work elevates marketing photography to another level. We not only love the concept, but it’s executed brilliantly.

Via hvilshoj.com

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Minimalism is often just the right treatment for getting to the essence of a visual identity (previous examples here and here and here). And that is precisely the case with Minneapolis-based designer/art director Tony Buckland’s project, Birds of Minnesota. You don’t have to be into ornithology or bird watching to appreciate this work, there’s an aesthetic appeal that stands on its own. Buckland’s objective is to “edit the defining characteristics of each bird down to the absolute minimum without losing the essence of the bird.” And he achieves that brilliantly. An ever-growing collection of prints available here.

Via birdsofminnesota.com

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Make no mistake, the captivating portfolio of Thailand-born, Sydney, Australia-based photographer/designer Peechaya Burroughs is no child’s play. Though her work is certainly whimsical and intrinsically approachable, it boasts no less artistic merit than fine art of a different nature. Burroughs’s minimalist approach to mostly hand-manipulated works is striking in a vast ocean of tricked out Photoshop work (which has merit in its own right, but the work of Burroughs is sort of refreshing in some ways). In her own words, Burroughs explains: “My photographs mainly consist of things that I create or manipulate by hand. Occasionally I use Photoshop when enhancing the idea and presentation of an image fits well. Driven by childhood memories and very much fascinated by children’s imagination and their quirkiness, the direction of my photography is light, easy to approach with a little touch of everyday optimism.”

Via peechayaburroughs.com and Instagram

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There’s an old adage that states “less is more.” And that maxim certainly holds true for this minimalist icon set developed for Schick. There was a notion in the Philippines that Schick was a female brand because of their popular line of lady razors, so the Manila branch of marketing and advertising giant J. Walter Thompson developed this slick set of graphic posters to combat that misperception. These fantastically bold graphics, by the team at JWT Manila, feature recognizable historical and pop culture figures with distinct facial hair (Mr. T from The A-Team, V from V for Vendetta, Salvador Dali, Groucho Marx and Charlie Chaplin) that one can achieve using Schick razors. We love how the product is seamlessly integrated into the designs. There’s certainly market research and number crunching that goes into how and where to market with visuals like these, but we don’t see why a campaign like this wouldn’t be effective here in the US. There seems to be a sort of facial hair renaissance happening right now, and aggressively bold visuals like these would be hard to miss.

Via jwt.com

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Having just dabbled in a bit of interior design ourselves with the renovation of one of our studios, we’ve become particularly aware of some exceptional furnishings lately. And this is one super example. Designed and developed by Spanish duo Ramón Úbeda and Otto Canalda, Up In The Air table is a thoughtfully conceived piece of art that also happens to double as a side table. Each cylindrical piece is constructed out of a patented environment-friendly resin with handmade fish replicas. In the designers’ own words: “Fish that aren’t fish. That seem to float in water that isn’t water. They seem to be suspended in air that isn’t air. Like a dream.”

Via viccarbe.com

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Chicago-area designer/illustrator/proud father Christian Jackson of Square Inch Design has a fondness for both minimalist design and kid art. In this excellent series, aptly titled Classic Children’s Stories, Jackson marries both. He captures the essence of each story in a really engaging and thoughtful way. And he sells prints! Related posts here and here.

Via sinch.us

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Yes, we are suckers for series, and we especially love this one. Brazilian designer/illustrator Frederico Birchal depicts famous figures from music, movies and television with just costumes. Birchal’s attention to detail really elevates this series. Awesome concept, excellent execution. Well done!

Via Behance

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Malaysian artist/illustrator/designer Tang Yau Hoong’s playful style really lends itself to this series of illustrations. Hoong pairs his often whimsical illustrations with famous quotes, and the results are excellent. We particularly like the Steve Jobs print… clever.

Via tangyauhoong.com

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