TED英语演讲 | 你精通这种语言(你甚至不知道)

万水整理 TED与纪录片 2019-07-09

🕖 简介

You are fluent in this language (and don't even know it)

演讲者Christoph Niemann

语言:英语

简介:我们都具有共同的特殊能力:读图 ,理解图中的思想内容和情感情绪。演讲人同时分享了一种他常用的创作方法:通过红心尺来调整一个作品的抽象程度,不能过于抽象也不能过于实际,简单却不失内涵。


📺 视频


📃 中英对照翻译

I'm an artist. Being an artist is the greatest job there is. And I really pity each and every one of you who has to spend your days discovering new galaxies or saving humanity from global warming.

我是一个艺术家,艺术家是最棒的工作。而我真的很怜悯你们每一个人你们必须花时间探索宇宙或将人类从全球暖化中拯救出来。


But being an artist is also a daunting job. I spend every day, from nine to six, doing this.

但其实艺术家也是份令人气馁的工作,我每天从九点到六点都在做这个:


I even started a side career that consists entirely of complaining about the difficulty of the creative process.

我甚至开始一份副业,而这份副业都在抱怨创造过程的难处。


But today, I don't want to talk about what makes my life difficult. I want to talk about what makes it easy. And that is you -- and the fact that you are fluent in a language that you're probably not even aware of. You're fluent in the language of reading images. Deciphering an image like that takes quite a bit of an intellectual effort. But nobody ever taught you how this works, you just know it.

但今天我不想讨论那些让我的人生变得困难的事,我想谈那些让我的人生变得简单的事。而那就是你以及一个你可能从未发觉的事实:你的某种语言能力其实很流畅,你其实很会解读图像语言。要译码一个像这样的图像,需要运用一些智力但没有人曾教导过你怎么做,你就是知道怎么做。


College, shopping, music. What makes a language powerful is that you can take a very complex idea and communicate it in a very simple, efficient form. These images represent exactly the same ideas. 

大学、逛街、音乐。让语言强大的关键是你能将一个很复杂的想法以很简单又有效率的形式传达。这些图像与文字代表完全相同的意思。


But when you look, for example, at the college hat, you know that this doesn't represent the accessory you wear on your head when you're being handed your diploma, but rather the whole idea of college. Now, what drawings can do is they cannot only communicate images, they can even evoke emotions. Let's say you get to an unfamiliar place and you see this. You feel happiness and relief.

举例来说,当你看着那顶学士帽时,你知道它不只是代表那个你在接过你的文凭时头上戴的装饰品。而是「大学」,这整个概念图画不仅仅能够传递图像,也能激发情感。假设你去到不熟悉的地方看到这个:你就觉得开心、松了口气。


Or a slight sense of unease or maybe downright panic.

或许感到有些焦虑,或者极度恐慌。


Or blissful peace and quiet.

或幸福安详。


But visuals, they're of course more than just graphic icons. You know, if I want to tell the story of modern-day struggle, I would start with the armrest between two airplane seats and two sets of elbows fighting. What I love there is this universal law that, you know, you have 30 seconds to fight it out and once it's yours, you get to keep it for the rest of the flight.

但视觉,当然不只是图标。如果我今天要讲关于现代奋斗的故事,我会从两个飞机座位之间的扶手与两组手肘之间的打斗开始。这个例子迷人的是这个共同定律:你有三十秒的时间争夺一旦抢到了,这个扶手的使用权整个航程都属于你。


Now, commercial flight is full of these images. If I want to illustrate the idea of discomfort, nothing better than these neck pillows. They're designed to make you more comfortable --

商业航班满是这类意象,如果我要描述「不舒服」的概念,没有什么比得上这些颈枕,它们是设计来让你感到更舒适的。


except they don't.

可是它们没有。


So I never sleep on airplanes. What I do occasionally is I fall into a sort of painful coma. And when I wake up from that, I have the most terrible taste in my mouth. It's a taste that's so bad, it cannot be described with words, but it can be drawn.

所以我在飞机上从不睡觉,我偶尔陷入一种类似痛苦的昏迷状态,然后当我醒来我的嘴巴有股最可怕的味道,那股味道糟到我无法以言语形容,但可以画出来。


The thing is, you know, I love sleeping. And when I sleep, I really prefer to do it while spooning. I've been spooning on almost a pro level for close to 20 years, but in all this time, I've never figured out what to do with that bottom arm.

事情是这样的,我爱睡觉,当我要睡的时候,我真的比较喜欢在背后抱时睡着。二十年来以这个汤匙姿势入睡,我可是专家级的,但过了这么多年,我还是不知道压在下面那只手要怎么办。


And the only thing -- the only thing that makes sleeping even more complicated than trying to do it on an airplane is when you have small children. They show up at your bed at around 4am with some bogus excuse of, "I had a bad dream."

而唯一一件,唯一一件让睡觉变得比在飞机上睡觉更复杂的事,就是当你有小小孩的时候,他们会在凌晨四点左右出现在你床边告诉你一些假的借口,像是「我做恶梦了」。


And then, of course you feel sorry for them, they're your kids, so you let them into your bed. And I have to admit, at the beginning, they're really cute and warm and snugly. The minute you fallback asleep, they inexplicably --

然后你当然怜悯他们,他们是你的小孩,所以你让他们过来跟你一起睡。我得承认,一开始他们真的很可爱、很温暖也很舒服,就在你要再度入睡的那一刻他们不知为何开始。


start rotating.

开始转动。


We like to call this the helicopter mode.

我们称此为「直升机模式」


Now, the deeper something is etched into your consciousness, the fewer details we need to have an emotional reaction.

那更深层的东西已经嵌入你的意识中,很少的信息就足够引起情绪反应。


So why does an image like this work? It works, because we as readers are incredibly good at filling in the blanks. Now, when you draw, there's this concept of negative space. And the idea is, that instead of drawing the actual object, you draw the space around it. So the bowls in this drawing are empty. But the black ink prompts your brain to project food into a void. What we see here is not a owl flying. What we actually see is a pair of AA batteries standing on a nonsensical drawing, and I animate the scene by moving my desk lamp up and down.

为什么像这样的图像可以达到效果?它能被看懂,因为身为读者的我们非常擅长填空。当你画画时,有一个概念叫做「实体周围的空间」这概念是我们不画物品的实体,而是画它周围的空间。所以这幅画里的碗是空的,但那黑色墨水促使你的脑将食物投射至空白的区块中。我们在这幅图中看到的不是一只在飞的猫头鹰,它其实是两个AA电池站在一幅荒谬的画上,然后我借着上下移动我的桌灯让画面动起来。


The image really only exists in your mind. So, how much information do we need to trigger such an image? My goal as an artist is to use the smallest amount possible. I try to achieve a level of simplicity where, if you were to take away one more element, the whole concept would just collapse. 

这图像真的只存在于你的脑中,那究竟需要多少信息才能激发这种图像?身为艺术家,我的目标是使用越少信息越好。我试着达到简洁的境界,简洁到若你再抽掉一个元素,整个概念就会崩解。


And that's why my personal favorite tool as an artist is abstraction. I've come up with this system which I call the abstract-o-meter, and this is how it works. So you take a symbol, any symbol, for example the heart and the arrow, which most of us would read as the symbol for love, and I'm an artist, so I can draw this in any given degree of realism or abstraction. Now, if I go too realistic on it, it just grosses everybody out.

这也是为什么身为艺术家,我最喜欢的工具是抽象。我发明了一个系统我叫它「抽象量计」它是这样使用的:取任何一个符号,例如爱心与箭,大多数的人会将它们解读为爱的象征,而我是个艺术家,所以我可以决定用多少写实或多少抽象元素来画它。如果我太写实,大家就会觉得恶心。


If I go too far on the other side and do very abstract, nobody has any idea what they're looking at. So I have to find the perfect place on that scale, in this case it's somewhere in the middle. Now, once we have reduced an image to a more simple form, all sorts of new connections become possible. And that allows for totally new angles in storytelling.

如果我又画得太抽象,没有人知道这是什么。所以我必须在那量尺中找到最完美的位置,以这个范例来说大概是在中间的位置,当我们将一个图像简化到更简洁的形式,各种新连结开始变得可行,也可以用新的观点说故事。


And so, what I like to do is, I like to take images from really remote cultural areas and bring them together. Now, with more daring references --

所以,我想做的是,我希望能结合遥远文化地区的图像,运用更多大胆的引用。


I can have more fun. But of course, I know that eventually things become so obscure that I start losing some of you. So as a designer, it's absolutely key to have a good understanding of the visual and cultural vocabulary of your audience. With this image here, a comment on the Olympics in Athens, I assumed that the reader of the "New Yorker" would have some rudimentary idea of Greek art. If you don't, the image doesn't work. But if you do, you might even appreciate the small detail, like the beer-can pattern here on the bottom of the vase.

我就能创造更多乐趣,但当然,我知道事情到最后变得很难懂,你们有些人会失去兴趣。所以身为一个设计师充分了解观众的视觉与文化词汇是很关键的,这个图像:一篇关于雅典奥运的评论我假设「纽约客」的读者多少对于希腊艺术会有一些初步的了解。如果你不了解希腊艺术,这个图像就不会达到它的效果。但如果你了解你,甚至会欣赏它的小细节,例如这个花瓶底部的啤酒罐般的图腾。


A recurring discussion I have with magazinee ditors, who are usually word people, is that their audience, you, are much better at making radical leaps with images than they're being given credit for. And the only thing I find frustrating is that they often seem to push meto wards a small set of really tired visual clichés that are considered safe. You know, it's the businessman climbing up a ladder, and then the ladder moves, morphs into a stock market graph, and anything with dollar signs; that's always good.

我跟杂志编辑反复讨论着一件事,而杂志编辑们通常是很在意词汇的人。我们讨论的是观众们你们比起图像原意更会跳跃式解读图像意义。而唯一让我觉得挫败的是,它们似乎总把我推向一系列老套,被认为保险的视觉效果,就像,有个商人正在爬梯,然后梯子动了,变成股市趋势图任何有钱币符号的东西,总是很好。


If there are editorial decision makers herein the audience, I want to give you a piece of advice. Every time a drawing like this is published, a baby panda will die.

如果今天的观众里有编辑决策者,我想给你一个建议,每当这种图被出版一次就会死一只熊猫宝宝。


Literally.

真的


When is a visual cliché good or bad? It's a fine line. And it really depends on the story. In 2011, during the earthquake and the tsunami in Japan, I was thinking of a cover. And I went through the classic symbols: the Japanese flag, "The Great Wave" by Hokusai, one of the greatest drawings ever. 

那老套的视觉效果什么时候好,什么时候不好?两者差别很微妙。端看你的故事内容2011年,日本发生地震与海啸时,我正在筹划一个封面。我把典型符号都想过了一遍:日本国旗葛饰北斋的「神奈川冲浪里」史上最厉害的画作之一。


And then the story changed when the situation at the power plant in Fukushima got out of hand. And I remember these TV images of the workers in hazmat suits, just walking through the site, and what struck me was how quiet and serene it was. And so I wanted to create an image of a silent catastrophe. And that's the image I came up with.

然后故事就变了在福岛的电厂失控之后,我记得电视里充满穿着防护衣工人们的图像在现场穿梭。而让我感到震撼的是那画面是如此平静,因此我就想创造一幅表达平静灾难的图像,这就是我当时的作品。


Thank you.

谢谢。


What I want to do is create an aha moment, for you, for the reader. And unfortunately, that does not mean that I have an aha moment when I create these images. I never sit at my desk with the proverbial light bulb going off in my head. What it takes is actually a very slow, unsexy process of minimal design decisions that then, when I'm lucky, lead to a good idea.

我想为读者创造一个「啊哈!」的时刻,而不幸的是,这并不代表我在创造这些图像的时候也有「啊哈」的时刻。我坐在书桌前时脑中的那颗「灯泡」从不熄灭设计过程,其实非常缓慢且是一点都不性感地在做一些微小的设计决策。如果幸运,这些决策将会引出好的概念。


So one day, I'm on a train, and I'm trying to decode the graphic rules for drops on a window. And eventually I realize, "Oh, it's the background blurry upside-down, contained in a sharp image." 

于是有一天,我在火车上试着解读窗户上雨滴的图像规则。然后我终于了解到「噢,原来它是包含在清晰图像里的模糊颠倒背景。


And I thought, wow, that's really cool, and I have absolutely noidea what to do with that. A while later, I'm back in New York, and I draw this image of being stuck on the Brooklyn bridge in a traffic jam. It's really annoying, but also kind of poetic. And only later I realized, I can take both of these ideas and put them together in this idea. And what I want to do is not show a realistic scene.

然后我想,哇,那真的是很酷,而对于如何处理它我完全没有想法。不久之后,我回到纽约我画了这个在布鲁克林大桥上塞车的图,塞车很烦人,也有点诗意,直到后来我才想到我可以同时采用这两种概念,然后将它们结合呈现,而我想做的不是呈现实景。


But, maybe like poetry, make you aware that you already had this image with you, but only now I've unearthed it and made you realize that you were carrying it with you all along. But like poetry, this is a very delicate process that is neither efficient nor scalable, I think. And maybe the most important skill for an artist is really empathy. You need craft and you need --you need creativity --thank you -- to come up with an image like that. 

而是,有点诗意的让你意识到其实这个图像已经存在你脑中而我现在将它挖掘出来让你了解到它其实一直都跟着你但像诗一样,它是个很细致的过程我觉得这个过程无法有效率也无法量化或许对一个艺术家来说最重要的技巧其实是同理心你需要技术,你也需要。你需要创造力。


But then you need to step back and look at what you've done from the perspective of the reader.

谢谢来创造出像这样的图像,然而在那之后,你必须往后退一步,以读者的视角看你创造出来的东西。


I've tried to become a better artist by becoming a better observer of images. And for that, I started an exercise for myself which I call Sunday sketching, which meant, on a Sunday, I would take a random object I found around the house and try to see if that object could trigger an idea that had nothing to do with the original purpose of that item. And it usually just means I'm blank for a long while. 

藉由变成一个更好的图像观察者我试着成为一个更好的艺术家为了这个目的,我开始了自己的练习我将这个练习称作「星期天速写」意思是,在星期天我会取房子周边的一个随机物品然后试着想想看该物品是否能激发点子激发跟这个物品的原始用途不同的点子这通常意味着我会有很长的一时间脑中空白。


And the only trick that eventually works is if I open my mind and run through every image I have stored up there, and see if something clicks. And if it does, just add a few lines of ink to connect -- to preserve this very short moment of inspiration.

唯一能让这件事成功的秘诀是当我不持任何偏见地扫描过每一个我存放在脑中的图像,看看是否有东西让我突然开窍,如果有,就只要加上几条线连结来保存这短暂的予人灵感的时刻。


And the great lesson there was that the real magic doesn't happen on paper. It happens in the mind of the viewer. When your expectations and your knowledge clash with my artistic intentions. Your interaction with an image, your ability to read, question, be bothered or bored or inspired by an image is as important as my artistic contribution. Because that's what turns an artistic statement really, into a creative dialogue. And,so, your skill at reading images is not only amazing, it is what makes my art,possible. And for that, I thank you very much.

而这经验中最宝贵的一课是魔法不是发生在纸上,而是在观看者的脑中。当你的期待与知识和我的艺术撞击时,你和图像的互动你能阅读、质疑或觉得图像很恼人、无聊或发人深省。这些都和我的艺术贡献一样重要。因为那就是将艺术表现真正转化成创意对话的关键。所以,你阅读图像的技巧不,仅是非常好,更是让我的艺术变得有可能性的关键。针对这点,我非常感谢你们。


Thank you. (Applause)

谢谢(掌声)




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