Abstraction is an illusion of our own visible reality and solely a sensory experience. It is a design interpretation. It has intellectual and affective artistic content that depends solely on intrinsic form rather than on narrative content or pictorial representation. Through abstraction, the complex power of natural phenomenon can be stripped down, simplified, studied and shifted into dynamic design possibilities. More observation practice here.


Create a different degrees or levels of abstraction in visual communications, from the least abstract to the most abstract. ‘A designer knows that he has achieved perfection not when there’s nothing left to add, but when there’s nothing left to take away’ – Antoine De Saint (1900-1944), French, Author.

Step 1 Catch the Spirit

Make sketches of the reference images from different angles, try to capture essential characteristics.

Step 2 Simplify in 2D

Transforming one of the sketches in 2D composition using lines, Extracting primary logic for design expression, Modify the lines to make more variations.

Step 3 Extrude the Abstraction

Converting lines from 2D composition into planes and making interesting 3D composition.

Extrude lines to Tapering planes.

Extrude lines to sloped planes with cut-out. Keep fabrication constraints in mind, try to have every three-dimensional composition fit the defined design context.

Step 1 Catch the Spirit

Step 2 Simplify in 2D

Step 3 Simplify in 3D

Step 4 Origami Shell Mesh