Minimalism measures value by creating a clear distinction between excessiveness and necessity.
Despite promoting mere simplicity, minimalism is a complex process that revolves around a list of rules. In order to be able to fully understand the concept of minimalism, you need to be able to define the true value that each element adds to your design.
“Simplicity involves unburdening your life, and living more lightly with fewer distractions that interfere with a high quality life, as defined uniquely by each individual.” Linda Breen Pierce
This article will guide you through the main steps of building a minimalist design from the ground and allow you to explore a different side of design. One that celebrates quality over quantity and encourages the creation of a purposeful design.
Characteristics of Minimalist Design
1.Nominal quantity = Maximum value
Or simply said:
“The less – the better”
You see how complexity adds a certain barrier between the message and the receiver?
In its basic form, minimalism explores the opportunities of eliminating this barrier in favor of a more deliberate choice of visual elements.
The phrase above is often used to describe the nature of minimal design. Yet, the true essence of minimalism is much deeper.
Minimalism is not just about stripping your design of all the fuzz. It’s expressed in making the conscious decision to concentrate on a single feature instead of creating a multi-layered artwork that explores a complex relationship between type and texture.
Key takeaways: Stripe down your design of any unnecessary elements and stick to the point. Remember that quality is over quantity.
2. Create Cognitive Transparency
Simplicity in minimalism allows the designer to make a bold statement without using an excessive amount of resources.
Minimalism reflects the ability to express an emotion or idea with just a few strokes. This design style uses symbolic elements to create cognitive triggers on an elementary level of consciousness.
“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery
A thoughtfully designed minimalist art is able to channel a strong message through a simple layout.
Key takeaways: Communicate your idea with the use of symbolic elements and stick with a simpler layout.
3. Give It Some Air
Minimalist design is clearly defined and easy to grasp. It settles around the use of white space to allow the various design elements to “breathe”.
In minimalist design, the important elements are presented in a filtered environment that compliments the whole concept. It isolates the essential elements and displays them against a subtle background.
Key takeaways: Avoid cluttering your design with too many elements. Build your idea around a grid layout and maximize white space when possible.
4. Build Consistency
Minimalism is a way of expressing an idea through a selected set of elements that are similar in nature and create a consistent design.
In this sense, the minimalist design promotes the use of clean typography and analogous color palettes. Sticking with simple typeface family thought the whole design is essential when creating a minimalist-inspired art. Going for a simplified sans-serif is best when creating a minimalist design. The background needs to provide enough space and avoid the use of texture and complex gradients. The use of color is allowed, tho, it should be reduced to a handful of subtle tints.
Key takeaways: Be consistent in your choice of typography and color palettes. Don’t experiment with mixing different design styles if you’re not sure they are a clear match.
5. Explore Sustainability
The minimalist design aims at creating a visual expression that stands the test of time.
Minimalist art is humble, yet, provoking. It uses different elements and design characteristics that help for the creation of a sustainable design concept. Minimalism is timeless and this is what makes it so brilliant. It presents a design layout that’s built with care and purpose. A design that provokes emotion and communicates ideas regardless of the external factors that surround it.
Key takeaways: Create timeless designs that are able to make a bold statement and stay trendy within a long period of time.
What to see more minimalist designs?