What I learnt from the works of Christoph Niemann

TED talk by Christopher Niemann


Christopher Niemann is one of the most influential artists of this generation. He is an illustrator, graphic designer, editor and co-author of several books. Some of his most famous works include the ” Sunday sketches ” collection and his covers for the New York Times magazines.
















” The deeper something is etched into your consciousness , the fewer details we need to have an emotional reaction” – Chritoph Niemann ( TED talk ) “

In his TED talk, Niemann states” Abstraction in itself is not very interesting “, and what he truly strives to achieve the perfect level of abstraction, ( that is the medium between realism and abstraction ). He further explains this by saying he enjoys art most when its a very simple message that sets off a big reaction.

He also delves into concepts into negative space, and how our brains recognize and comprehend images in a way that the piece does not have to be complete ( can be lacking details) for us to get the picture. Niemann goes on to say that art allows you to take a very intricate, complex idea and communicate it in a simple, efficient form. He concludes this point by saying art is capable of depicting ideas that words simply cannot.


A list of things I learned from the artistic mastermind himself –

  • As a designer, you have to have an understanding of the cultural and visual vocabulary of your audience.
  • With his work, he unearths images omnipresent in our mind, therefore he needs a minimal level of detail to convey his message
  • ” The most important skill for an artist is empathy “
  • Shorter deadlines can have a positive impact on your work
  • while creating art, you shouldn’t be waiting around for ideas, for that ‘ a-ha!’ moment. Sometimes you just have to put the elements down on paper and let your thoughts flow


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