Shadows simplify the world around us in extremely beautiful ways. These silhouettes of blocked light show us the presence of an object, revealing only slight details about what it could be, but often creating something with even more character than the object casting it. There is something powerful in the simplified outlines of objects… and designer Jason Ratliff knows this well.
Ratliff uses the outline and shadow of objects to great effect in many of his works, removing much unnecessary detail to bring emphasis to the shape of certain objects, while retaining detail where he wants to show the whole story. Often he creates his simplified shapes with detailed patterns, as with the rainbow-like collages seen in his Walking Shadows series or the wallpaper-like silhouettes in his beautiful Sketchbook Vol. 1. This playful toying with differing levels of detail really keeps his work interesting and makes it pop off the page.
Ratliff currently works as a freelance designer and illustrator from his home base in Indianapolis, Indiana. You can find more of his work on his personal site, jasonratliff.net, or see his photographs on Flickr.