This has already done the rounds, but I’m mesmerised by this brush so had to repost:
“All your down strokes are thick, all your up strokes are thin…snap to the right, up thin.”
Roundhand Lettering Demo by Glen Weisge.
The R that didn’t make it.
I’ve been working on a lettering and typography project following on from my Exmouth Print. One the drop caps or illustrated initials that I need to illustrate is an fun ‘R’. I took inspiration loosely from the lettering on the iconic ‘Golden Gallopers’ carousel on Brighton Pier. While the gorgeous hand-painted lettering on the ride has a jaunty, seaside feel, I needed something a bit more ‘typographic’ but keeping that flamboyant style. Unfortunately the one above isn’t going to work in the overall design but I thought you might like to see it.
You are the one
I really like the combined lettering on these Brazilian ads for Feevale University. It’s a shame the final, compiled design is cluttered with extra messaging and branding—which could have been contained within the numeral—but the actual lettering works well with the photography.
typostrate: “You are not another one, you are the one”. Made by Mauricio Thomsen, Art Director from Porto Alegre, Brazil. A perfect example how typography can function within big campaigns and ad commercials.
Rob Clarke’s letters and logos
I can’t think of a more prolific letterer and typographer in the UK right now than Rob Clarke. Although his name may not be as familiar as some of his American contemporaries, it would be hard to live in Britain and not be familiar with his logos. His lettering adorns basketfuls of supermarket products and numerous high-street shop fronts.
I met up with Rob Clarke on a wet and windy morning in Clerkenwell, London. Despite his success you couldn’t meet a more modest and self-critical designer. After a degree in graphic design, Rob found work in a type and lettering studio and spent time scanning and vectorising hand-lettered type. He studied the construction of the letters closely and after a few years found the he could make iterations directly on screen. “I guess I’m partly self-taught, it was a pretty slow process and took around 5 years before I built up any confidence—obviously there were no social networks or ways of getting feedback as there is today.”
Rob now designs directly on screen, seeing the mouse just like a pencil. He creates such polished roughs he often has to remind clients not to use them in final artwork. “I need to get a feeling/style/direction at speed I feel the mouse works perfectly— I guess I sketch on the screen. I see many people nowadays spending ages refining a perfect sketch but this will, on most occasions need redrawing as a vector anyway. I also think the more experienced one gets you have an instinct as to what people are looking for and therefore less initial sketching is needed.”
I asked what advice he would give to budding letterists:
“Don’t think you have to be the best at drawing or have the best handwriting to become a typographer. As long as you are passionate and willing to work hard I believe you can make a go of it.
Discipline—You need discipline especially when working on your own. Practice and fill your time constantly being inspired or educated.
Remember the brief—it’s not all about creating a beautiful configuration that will look cool on a T-shirt or poster. Don’t get too precious and grow a slighter thicker skin…
Be nice—I have to liaise with literally hundreds of people… account handlers, juniors, seniors, directors etc. I’m sure if you were a pain in the arse you wouldn’t get much repeat work or my favourite marketing vehicle—word of mouth.”
Having worked with so many clients worldwide, I wondered what was next for Rob. He would love to do more arty pieces and maybe an exhibition. “I’ve also given myself personal goals throughout my career one of which was to work for certain clients that I admire—there are still a couple out there that remain elusive.”
Click above logos for notes. Agency Credits: Tetley - Ziggurat, Tiger - Design Bridge, Dulux - Design Bridge, Eurostar - The Clearing, Nature Bake - Cubic, Saga - 1HQ.
Here Be Monsters
I noticed this wonderful Icelandic project of illustrated type inspired by medieval maps featuring fantastical sea creatures.
Design by Reykjavík based Stella Björg, these decorated capitals remind me of the Victorian illustrations I’ve written about recently. I love that several of the creatures appear to be based on specific Icelandic mythical beasts, as named at the bottom of the print. I also really like the print colours and flecked paper that gives the final work its antique look.
My “Here Be Monsters” illustrated letters started from the simple idea of writing “MONSTER” but having finished it just didn’t seem like there was much left to complete the alphabet. I was in no hurry to complete it, so very slowly monstrous letters got added and finally there appeared a complete alphabet. - Stella Björg
Although, I just posted an alphabet of lettering, I saw this slick set by Jose Ramirez and Ben Negrete and had to share more.
The pair run the FreshStudio together and are challenging themselve to publish a new original design per day on their blog, Design365, throughout 2014. Sounds easy enough—until clients, families and life-in-general need your time—but duo have kept the quality high so far.
February was DropCaps and now March is city nicknames. They’re on Tumblr, go take a look.
This sparkling letter by typographer, Hilka Riba, wasn’t made with a pin (that kept crinkling the paper) it was created with a CNC Router. This allowed for the variance in hole size—extreme but worth it.
Spotted on the ever-awesome Twenty-Six Types
To achieve a perfectly packaged book, Finnish authors, Christoffer & Kaisa Leka, wanted to take their presentation to a new level by having the stamps designed as well.
Thier latest book, Time After Time comes enveloped in its own wrapping paper, custom printed to match the book’s colorful end papers and is meticulously wrapped and lettered by Christoffer himself.
The beautiful set of characters above have been designed by a host of typographers from all over the world, many well-known in the industry: Erik van Blokland, Maria Doreuli, Dave Foster, Kimya Gandhi, Cyrus Highsmith, Robert Keller, Ben Kiel, Indra Kupferschmidt, David Ross, Nick Sherman, Florian Schick, Nina Stöessinger, Lauri Toikka, Wout Trippas, Teo Tuominen & Bernd Volmer.
I love this obsession to perfect every last detail; Ensuring that the book, which has obviously been lovingly crafted, is placed in the hands of the reader so carefully.
Each letters has been reproduced with gouache paint by designer Markku Mujunen on 6 millimeter thick plywood and each piece measures approximately 180 x 180 millimeters. To cover the costs, the originals paintings are being sold for €50. First come first served.
I noticed that I’d neglected to post some of my day-to-day type research that’s been piling up over on Instagram and Pinterest.
Here’s a selection of decorative capitals filling rectangles. While I’ve not necessarily chosen the most beautiful of initials they do represent a range of styles. The sqaure shape provides a good structure for patterns and imagery while making it easy to compose blocks of text around them.
Midolle, Silvestre and Others, Florid and Unusual Alphabets
William Morris, Kelmscott Chaucer
Owen Jones, 1001 Illuminated Capital Letters
- Taschen, A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles
A world of options in this alphabet inspired desk design by French, CGI Designer, Benoit Challand. Each offers a space with its own character.
“You can sit in an A-shaped desk, feeling like you’re at the prow of a ship, or in the smooth curve of a D, far more comfortable than being boxed into a traditional cubicle.”
Whispered Garden Alphabet
I spotted this personal lettering project by Thuy Mat tit from Vietnam. The ethereal designs were inspired by the softness and beauty of the various natural forms. I love the little details hidden amongst the linework.