Few artists are able to convey complex, emotive messages using basic shapes and just a handful of colours quite as well as the Russian vector illustrator Nikolai Senin. Each form is sublimely crafted using as few lines as possible, carefully managed colour selections and an intelligent use of negative space that makes viewers want to take a closer look, engaging with the image and what it’s communicating.
Based in St Petersburg, Nikolai has developed his drawing skills through courses at the Stiglitz State Academy of Art and Design. He is an experienced graphic designer and as such understands the finer workings of a successful campaign. Nikolai draws a huge amount of inspiration from nature – in particular big cats, whales and sharks – and loves creating images that make a strong statement about the environment. He produces work for some of Russia’s biggest companies and organisations.
Less is more is Nikolai’s mantra, but he works diligently to get there with each image. He sketches traditionally on paper, planning the composition and reducing his lines and shapes to a bare minimum. He creates his artwork in Adobe Illustrator, rendering it in a minimal palette of just four or five colours, then sometimes adds a little texture to give it a slightly more tactile feel.
Clients love the clarity and simplicity of Nikolai’s style. However, the way he uses form, space and colour gives his work both an emotional and an intellectual impact.