From the Design Desk: Seeing Type Out There

I can’t speak for every graphic designer, but generally speaking it’s pretty fun for us to see typography breaking out of the norm and getting out there. By this I mean seeing type outside of screens, books and billboards and in unexpected places, or in unexpected ways. For example, I really enjoyed the installation bellow in the 2011 MFA Show at the California College of the Arts.

Big shifts in scale alone can be a lot of fun, such as with the mural project below, A Love Letter For You, which I mentioned a while back on a post about kind gestures. I was also reminded of it in the blog Just My Type.

The book Everything Is Going to Be OK, a collection of affirmations, features typography rendered in different, unique ways. Many of the examples show typography that has actually been embedded in an environment, be it on someone’s hand, a bedroom wall, or the side of a building.

Here’s the work of some experimental typography students tackling the same design challenge as in Everything Is Going to Be OK. Their class was inspired by Stefan Sagmeister’s TED talk on The Power of Time Off and the idea of play and applying the techniques of design in different ways.

For me, the power of seeing type used differently—whether it’s by getting really big or being spelled out using leaves—is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. It can be just, well, fun. In other words, it’s a form of (design) play, filled with creative freedom and chances for discovery. Try it!

Suzanne LaGasa

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  • Dave May 16, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    Love the post Suzanne.


  • exocreative May 16, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    Great article – and as a designer, I wish I would have written & designed Everything Is Going To Be Ok. What a good solid concept for a book and one that design geeks like us would refer back to on a continual basis.
    The beauty is that good design – and interesting design – and well thought out design is all around us.
    Thanks for bringing these to our attention!


  • lynneGB May 16, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    Too often we forget to have fun. Great post; thanks for the inspiration.


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