A type specimen in blog-post format
After a year and a half at home, quarantined, and working, this alphabet came to me.
First, in the form of an h.
I had been looking at an older book called “The Art of Calligraphy.” I have never had formal training in calligraphy before but have always been fascinated with its intricacy. Taking inspiration and techniques from the book, I started doodling some of the alphabets for fun. I enjoyed the hand movements, the markings on the page, and all these extra marks that aren’t as prominent in type anymore.
I love typography! But I never explored type in my work in a personal way. It always felt like a deity; untouchable to the likes of me – those who had never studied calligraphy. But this semester I got to teach typography for the first time and it changed my view on type. I was able to further understand it.
That maximum – when you have to teach something that’s when you actually learn it – was one of my biggest takeaways in my teaching this semester. By teaching type I learned type.
This alphabet is the spillage of my admiration for type.
The characters just evolved from one another, quite fast actually (could have used more time; it is a work in progress; nothing is ever done, yadda yadda yadda…). From the H I collected key information for the other letters: proportion, width, x-height and ascender, and contrast.
With these elements in hand, I could break up the shape of the H into its smaller pieces to apply to the other letters as they were created.
While drawing the H I focused on contrast and boldness. So I took these attributed and created a cohesive* alphabet that embraced these characteristics.
Once I had all the letters I could start applying them to different purposes. I made some posters, stickers, and I am working on making some animations with them.
I’ve also explored pattern making with the letters.
That’s it. I just wanted to get this post out. I want to do a more in-depth analysis of each letter and how I can improve them in the future.