Art Jamming: Minimalist Art Style

Simplicity is the keynote of all elegance. As the name suggests, the simplistic or minimalist art style only requires a few simple and basic shades/tones and yet manages to bring out a satisfying sense of elegance.
This art style gives off a very calm and soothing vibes. It is very pleasing to the eye and it seeks to divert your attention from reality and provide you a sense of escapism when you stare into the canvas.

The colour palette used are usually lighter and warmer colours. This includes mustard yellow,  beige, dusty pink and white. The dull colours are navy blue, warm grey, sap green. There is usually a nice combination of the colour palette when the colours are complemented together.

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Here are some examples of minimalist art styles recreated by Artist Celine Chia and her students:

Art Jamming for Beginners: Minimalist/simplistic Art Style
Minimalist Plant

Minimalist Plant:

To recreate the minimalist plant, we first use simple shapes like circles and semi circles, followed by adding leaves to bring out the essence of the painting. The strokes used are very simple and done in one stroke, while the colours used are 3 different colours to bring out the minimalistic effect. This simple overlapping Red and Yellow highlights the effect of juxtaposition of the contrasting colours.

Minimalistic Scenery art style
Minimalistic Scenery

Minimalistic Scenery:

Warm colours are used in this portrait of a minimalist scenery. There is no blending of colours, but rather separating the layers through the choice of colours. The colours used are Beige, Blush, Maroon and Reddish Brown. These layers, when used in conjunction with each other, produce the warm hues of the setting sun against the backdrop of the mountainous regions.

Minimalistic Vector art style
Minimalistic Vector Art Style

Vector Art Style:

Vector Art Style uses the outlines of the people, and leave out the facial features of the subject matter. Using pantone colours, this creates a unique yet distinct highlight to the subject such that one can instantly recognise the focus of the painting. There is not much blending required and minimal contours are used in this painting.

Minimalistic Floral (Left) and Minimalistic Cartoon (Right), Simplistic art style at work
Minimalistic Floral (Left) and Minimalistic Cartoon (Right)

Minimalist Floral (left painting):

Minimalist Floral art style is very common for quotes, and comes with words or phrases that seek to raise awareness or convey a message. The colours used are more pastel in nature. In this case, the colours used are Mustard Yellow, White, Beige and Pale Pink.

Minimalist Cartoon (right painting):

For the Minimalist Cartoon art style, the main focus is on the cartoon character as it stands out by itself. Simple solid lines are used to draw attention to the subject and not much details are needed. The colours used in this painting are black, beige and watermelon pink and white.

Minimalist Island

Minimalistic art style - Santorini Island
Minimalistic Island – Santorini

For the Minimalistic Island (Santorini), the colours used are Royal Blue, White, Grey, Peach, Orange and White. Solid colours are used, with no blending, and clean lines are drawn to distinguish the layers and shadows. We use tape to achieve the clean lines.

Minimalist Line Drawing

Minimalistic Line Drawing
Minimalistic Line Drawing

For the Minimalistic Line Drawing, the colours used are Beige, Sage Green, Sap Green and White. The hardest part about this drawing is the initial line drawing whereby one has to complete the portrait without lifting the pen or pencil away from the canvas. After outlining the line drawing with pencil, follow up with painting the entire background with beige. Fill in (the leaves) with Sage Green and use permanent marker to outline the pencil marks.

Minimalistic Structure

Minimalistic Structure (Lighthouse)
Minimalistic Structure (Lighthouse)

For the Minimalistic Structure, in this case a lighthouse, the colours used are Peach, Royal Blue, Light Blue, Yellow, Orange, Black and White. Do up a rough outline and fill the background before adding in the main subject and details. We use tape to achieve the clean lines.

Final Words

To sum up, the minimalist art style is very beginner friendly, and definitely very doable for newbies keen to start art jamming this simplistic art style. The tricky aspect of this art style is the need to strike a balance between elegance and simplicity. Once this balance is achieved, the painting will naturally turn out chic and classy.

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