Friday, April 13, 2012

The Artistic Type

 I love fonts. I am inspired by the different emotions a certain typeface can evoke. I love the drama, the whimsy, the playfulness of some and the sophistication of others. Steve Jobs was enamored with calligraphy and typeface as well and his study of this art played well into his style and product design at Apple. While I certainly have not yet achieved his type of success, I can relate to his interest in the subject.
In his own words, the quote below is Steve Jobs discussing a calligraphy class he took at Reed College after he dropped out:

"I learned about serif and sans serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes a great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can't capture, and I found it fascinating."
(From Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography, page 41.)

I think it is pretty cool to design a new typeface and I admire the talent of graphic artists who can create a brand new view of the alphabet. (For fun and to view some new fonts, click here.) 

Additionally, I get intrigued by various art forms using letters and fonts. So, when I came across some recent work of Jérôme Corgier, a Parisian graphic artist (who recently won the Communication Arts award for his design of the New York Times Style Magazine Cover - see above), I was drawn to the work. 

 Jérôme creates a 3 dimensional type in the form of a paper sculpture.  Mixing letters from Latin and Arabic alphabets, making paper cut outs of the same - with color - he blurs the line between art and function. The letters still have meaning but the meaning is different now, the form flows into a type of art. I can't decide if I really like it but I am interested in it. Want to see more?

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