Eames once said: Details are not the Details – they make the design. That’s what I want to explore today.
According to Eames, details are not merely ornamental aspects of a design, but rather integral parts that contribute to the overall effect. He argues that it is important to consider all details when creating a design, as even the smallest ones can have a significant impact.
This quote highlights the importance of paying attention to even the smallest details to create a successful design. But what about minimalist design? Is it the details? Or the big picture, which should come together to create a cohesive, balanced, and visually appealing composition? And is it possible to create a harmonious ensemble on the basis of the details?
The devil is in the details, right?
Details are important because they can create visual interest, add texture and depth, and give the viewer a sense of what the designer was thinking when creating the piece.
When we look at a design, we see the general shape and form, but it’s the details that really catch our eye and make us take notice. It’s the details that make us look at the design more closely, and it’s the details that make us appreciate the design more. Especially with minimalist design, the smallest details can define and make up the entire design (like in the upcoming left picture, example 1)
But if there are no details, especially in minimalist designs, what defines the design?
If there are no details, then it’s a stylistic means used intentionally to contribute to the overall concept. It can even be a defining feature. In this case, the missing details make the design unique and special. But be careful here – if composition, color choice, symmetry, and other important design principles make the overall look unconvincing, a lack of detail can determine whether the design is good or bad.
If composition, color choice, symmetry, and other important design principles make the overall look unconvincing, a lack of detail can determine whether the design is good or bad.
From good to great
I personally believe that the big picture of a minimalist design is important, after all, it gives the first impression, but it is usually the details that make the design special. They distinguish good minimalist design from great minimalist design. Especially the details that manage to combine functionality with aesthetics (example 3). And that, in my opinion, is what makes minimalist design so appealing.
It is important that the details work together to create a cohesive whole. If one element is out of place, it can throw off the entire design. So the key to a successful minimalist design is finding the right balance between the details and the big picture.
Now it’s up to the designers among my readers: What makes minimalist design for you?
About Exploring Aesthetics:
Sarah loves asking questions and exploring the things she interacts with on a daily basis. Exploring aesthetics is her column which discusses art, design, and aesthetics to explore, inspire, and question the status quo.