Self-confessed “grid fanatic” and “typography nerd” Jeremias Diekmann aims for artful simplicity with his design
The Rhine-based graphic designer tells us why he loves working within the music industry, always leading with the motto “less is more”.
- Olivia Hingley
- 23 February 2022
There is a lot of thorough thinking behind Jeremias Deikmann’s minimalist designs. Having an “extreme interest in presenting things clearly and not too overloaded” and an obsession with grids, his work is simplistic and extensively planned out in equal measure. Beginning with one of his beloved grids, Jeremias always starts making digital drafts before turning to pen and paper and “sketching wildly”. As to be expected, the designer views all his pieces in black and white, before even considering colour, a trick he learnt early on in his studies. “I’ve learnt techniques such as the creation of white spaces, or how to deal with the given area and not to let it become too cluttered or ornamental.” And, finally, Jeremias relies on a process of rebuilding and reassembling, “because in the end it takes practical examination to understand what it means to create tension with the leading motto ‘less is more’.”
But whilst Jeremias’ work shows such originality and depth, he deems his pathway to graphic design as “very stereotypical”. Beginning by stating how much of a “cliche” he understands it to be, Jeremias tells us that he “never paid attention in school because I was always drawing”. He also puts his creativity down to his being taught at a Waldorf school (more commonly known as a Steiner school in the UK) – a form of schooling that prioritises artistic and practical skills over formal academia. Later changing universities from FH Bielefeld to PBSA Düsseldorf (today HSD Düsseldorf) and being taught by figures such as Victor Malsy – who introduced him to typography design – Jeremias places a lot of his desire and drive to become a designer on his time in such influential institutions.
When discussing his work for various musical artists and festivals, Jeremias quite simply states, “if I had the choice, I would only work for musicians”. “For me, the interface of music and design is the epitome of creativity in graphic design, because it always generates something new.” With his love for music being so powerful, over the pandemic Jeremias began his ongoing Techno Series, which is currently in its third round, in which he creates a number of posters and vinyl covers based off of the feeling he experiences when listening to his favourite tracks. Not only working within the techno industry, Jeremias has been working with the Cologne based Jazz Jazz Jazz, a series of Jazz events featuring artists such as Mulate Asatke and Nubya Garcia. With the events slowly returning after the pandemic, the series sought a fresh new look. Beginning with some ideas that were “colourful and overloaded”, Jeremias quickly realised that they didn't work, and instead opted for a “cleaner” look which focused heavily on the musical artist. “It was important to create clear hierarchies and still break out of the very structured look,” he adds.
The broad nature of the music industry has also allowed for Jeremias’ love of typography to flourish. Beginning with his techno series, Jeremias made his first type as an idea for an artwork for Yan Cook’s Graphite EP, specifically for the track Sand. “The goal was to develop a quite blocky font that reflected the very hard techno, which nevertheless broke open through little round corners here and there.” Enjoying the process so much, Jeremias decided to build a whole alphabet. Moving away from the very blocky and techno affine exterior, Jeremias instead gravitated toward some softer and “something more responsive to the curves”. “The thickness of the typeface is not completely lost, but the contrast between the two extremes is more beautiful now.” This focus on the softer, more rounded potential of type is evident throughout his work for Jazz Jazz Jazz, which demonstrates the designers most developed and assured fonts. Still early in his career but showing such skill and determination, we’re sure the music industry is going to be seeing much more of Jeremias.
Jeremias Diekmann: 3xJazz Nubya Garcia (Copyright © Robert Winter, 2021)
About the Author
Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.