I was in Stratford-Upon-Avon over the weekend and – whilst supping on an ale I’d never heard of – I spotted this beauty on the wall:
In fact, the room was full of similar pieces from the same artist, but – with my usual foresight – I hadn’t charged my phone properly, so ran out of battery to take more pics.
I was up close and personal with this particular piece (it was on the wall directly behind me), so I had the good fortune to see it in detail first, then at a distance.
At a distance – certainly to my mind – it was a wonderful, complete piece with a rustic charm to it. Up close, however, you can could see that it was created by minimal, individual strokes of ink: strokes that are almost childlike.
Each stroke is simplicity defined (look at the wonky lines on the far right, which make up the rough-hewn edge of the clock tower), but the overall impression is of a complete, carefully considered piece.
It’s no different with good copy. Any fool can know the word ‘physiognomy’, but when would you ever use that over [facial] ‘expression’?
Sometimes ‘tailored’ is better than ‘bespoke’.
Sometimes words like ‘good’ or ‘nice’ or ‘strong’ are okay – it depends what they contribute to the overall picture.
Ultimately, it’s about knowing which ‘strokes’ to use, and using them sparingly.
As the well-worn phrase goes: ‘KISS – keep it simple, stupid’