We have finally gotten everything through and files approved for the Fall issue and it’s now in the printing presses over in Idaho. Spending so much time reading, writing and editing on a particular subject gets my mind almost obsessed with it. I had already started exploring simple design in my own work this year but now I’m really focused on it. That and mandalas since the Mandala article really got me intrigued. But more of that week after next when the issue comes out. We’ll have all issues in the mail and the digital edition in your inbox on September 7th, so not long now! Get your order or renewal in before that date to be sure you are one of the first kids on your block to get this truly amazing collection of tutorials and thought-provoking articles.
In the meantime, I have collected some nice designs where simple or subdued works particularly well. Simplicity in design is really a matter of relativity. Is it simple compared to what the artist usually does, simple for the kind of technique it is, or is it a very simple form compared to what most artists create? To illustrate this, I thought I’d pull out some of the better subdued designs I’ve found. These are simple on some level but aren’t basic or boring.
Bettina Welker’s pin here is a calm and subdued piece compared to much of what she produces although she is no stranger to simplicity. With a focus on the effect of translucency, she has added only what she needs to keep interest and focus. The white stripes give the translucence a reference for the depth of layers and something to peer in towards while those red dots give us a focal point. And that is all it needs.
Bettina’s designs are always beautifully thought out and are a definite source of reference for anyone who likes work with a graphics inspired edge. Go get inspired by her simple and involved work on her website and get her tutorials and classes on Etsy and Craft Art Edu.
Inspirational Challenge of the Day: Take a technique you really enjoy and try to minimize what you do with it. For instance, if you make kaleidoscope canes with six sides, try three or four or reduce the number of paths or colors in your design. If you create colored surfaces with alcohol inks, use just one instead of three. Take a look at the effect and determine a design that will work with the less complex version. Add focus if you need but try to keep it simple and see what you come up with.
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