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Inspirational Forms

RdQuite obviously, the idea of logotype inspired me… And after watching this video http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/paula_scher_gets_serious.html (posted by Professor Sullivan for my ART620 class), I thought to myself: I have nothing to lose. I’m ready for serious play! I took my first steps toward typeface design.

So, already having a business idea at work in my mind from earlier this year, I set to work. I settled on the name of Restoration designs and registered.

Next, the fun part: creating the logotype! I started a sketchbook of thumbnails and got to work in Illustrator to create the type forms. Utilizing the grid view in Illustrator, the formation of type seemed to flow naturally. I made sure to keep curves uniform and include the Old Style contrast that I love. The only aspect of these designs that is not crrd_typeeated from scratch is the tagline, which features Baskerville (italic).

Sans serif, though…Even a surprise to me!

I fully expect this logotype to evolve over time, and I am open to discussion. However, as my first attempt, and truly an act of serious play, I am content.

For more information on my newly registered business, please visit http://www.restorationdesignsmd.com/. Side note: Adobe Muse is an absolutely wonderful program.

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Secondary Source Research

A few highlights from my secondary source research (both the facts and my commentary):

  • Serifs

Serifs originated in ancient Roman times, when words were carved in stone. These small lines carved on the ends of strokes kept the stone from cracking…So interesting!

Serif typefaces have lost popularity in the modern world, but the more I learn about historical typefaces, the more I appreciate them. The idea that the materials used for presenting ancient typography (carved stone) dictated the development of serifs adds an incredibly interesting layer of complexity to this timeless typographic element. Serif typefaces have a foundation not just in two-dimensional art and design, but also in sculpture.

Thank you to Professor Bridget Sullivan of Towson University for her lecture, “The History of Typography.” This was just one of the interesting facts presented.

  • Baskerville

Baskerville. A radical but legendary serif typeface…What could be better than that? Baskerville was founded in the mid-1700s. Using strong contrast between thick and thin strokes “was denounced by many of his contemporaries as amateur and extremist” (Thinking with Type, Ellen Lupton).

There is an interesting lesson to learn from Baskerville; the innovative and deviant usage of classic typeface elements can lead to truly timeless designs.

Lupton, Ellen. Thinking with Type. Second, Revised and Expanded ed. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010. Print.

  • Humanist vs. Old Style

I have been having some trouble differentiating between humanist and Old Style typography. Here are a couple of links that shed light on that:

Humanist Typography

Old Style Typography

It’s all in the e’s.

A Preface to the First Wave of Research

Wow! The past few weeks have been full of learning about and experimenting with typography.  As a preface for the following posts, here is a brief outline of my research from the past few weeks.

  • History (Secondary Sources)

I have never been a history buff, but the history of art and design has always been of interest to me, both for the sake of learning as well turning that newfound knowledge into inspirations for new projects. I will post about the highlights of my historical research: some facts about the founding of historical typefaces that I find especially interesting.

  • Encounters with Typography (Primary Research)

As I have immersed myself in the history and technical aspects of typography, I have begun to notice typefaces more and more. Type is absolutely everywhere. Now, as I drive down the road, I long to take pictures with my eyes so that I may remember and compare all of the different typefaces displayed on the fronts of buildings. As I watch a documentary, I recognize the typeface being used, and it is all I can think about for the entirety of the show. The following posts will display the pictures of my primary research: encounters with type that I have found throughout my apartment and town (Catonsville), the type that flavors my life and the lives of those in my community. This is another extremely important basis for the founding of a new typeface.

  • Inspiration

Continue reading to discover what this secondary and primary research has inspired in the business aspect of my life.

Welcome!

Welcome to the Founding ‘Faces Blog!  I am excited to share my research of typography with you on my journey to create a new typeface.

Just to get started, I have made a small collection of interesting websites that contain easy-to-read information on typography and resources for creating typefaces and fonts.  These include:

  • www.fonts.com — Though this website contains an extensive font library, I am mostly interested in the Learning About Fonts & Typography Section.  Under this section, “Fontology” contains brief and concise information on the history of the Latin alphabet and typography.
  • www.typophile.com — This is a fun website to browse if you have an interest in expanding your knowledge about specific fonts. There is a Typowiki section that contains information on everything from typefaces to printing methods.  Since it is user-edited, it may not be the best for research projects, but it is a good starting point for learning the basics.
  • www.creativebloq.com — This blog post that I found, entitled “How to design your own typeface,” does just that; it gives great tips to think about when starting on this endeavor and outlines how to turn ideas into action.
  • http://www.fontlab.com/ — I found this website through the blog www.ilovetypography.com, another great blog that outlines typeface-creation in the post “So you want to create a font.”  The author of this article gives a few options of font editing software, of which FontLab Studio is stated to be the industry standard.  It is, of course, very expensive, but it is worth it to look at the site and compare the product to others in the field (Font Forge and Font Creator).

I look forward to sharing my research and conversing with you about this awesome field of design!