Essay

My Graphic Design journey began in 2015 and typography was something that instantly caught my attention. It came to my notice that most of the display fonts and typefaces logos started to look similar and I used to wonder why? It was mostly because the design trend was shifting toward a more modern look and minimal design approach but it sort of killed the dynamics and emotion of typography that we used to have a couple of decades ago. As a designer, my job is not just to design beautiful content but also to find answers to these questions. I believe typeface design and methods should continuously evolve rather than sticking to our existing designs and tweaking them. 

 

Inspiration for creating new typefaces can be found anywhere and everywhere, it is just that we as designers need a creative lens to see it. In my thesis - Atypical Type, I am trying to find inspiration from the things that we see every day and generate typefaces that are unique and authentic. It is not just about creating new typefaces but also finding new tools and techniques to generate them that other designers could use. Providing tools and techniques to budding designers is something we all should keep in mind while creating something new as it would benefit the whole design community and help us evolve into better designers. So what does Atypical Type exactly mean? Typefaces with an unusual visual appearance could be used for a variety of purposes and look different from our mundane fonts. An atypical type is supposed to be intriguing and could be a conversation starter. It is not only about having an unusual or a different look, it is also about how it was created and what thinking process and approach lie behind it. It is the careful exploration of techniques and processes to experiment with type.

 

To grow as a graphic designer, I need to constantly think of new ideas and experiment so that I am always creating designs that match the current trend and serve as an inspiration for future designs. My inspiration mainly comes from nature, automotive design, emotions and other designers but it is not limited to that. With atypical type series, I am trying to find a new way to look at things. I believe it is important for all designers to be able to see, hear and breathe design from whatever discipline they are working on and the inspiration will work like a charm. The visual part of type is referred to as typography. It's the art of structuring text in a readable and appealing manner. It can also be utilized to convey a certain atmosphere or to reinforce a point. To accomplish so, we can employ a variety of typefaces and font styles, as well as change the font size, letter spacing, and more. Typography is an important aspect of any design and is one of the most well-known design terms. Depending on how they have been created, the same words can communicate a distinct feeling. Emotions play a very crucial role in typography, they can make or break the whole meaning which is why I have always prioritized the emotions and dynamics of my lettering and typeface designs. 

 

My journey started with hand lettering where I explored different brushes to create custom lettering for clients but after some time, I realized that my lettering style was getting monotonous. To break this monotony, I started creating my custom brushes and it worked for me. With the help of my custom brushes, I started the 36 Days of Type series in which I designed letters and numbers as LED lights in cars. All letters were inspired by the initial letter of the car brand or its unique name. This provided these cars with a distinct look and an easter egg which went well with the brand identity of the car. This project was a turning point in my typography journey as a graphic designer. I started to think that if type could be an integral part of industrial design, then the possibilities of typeface designs are endless and we still have a very big gap to fill. It helped me to visualize typefaces differently and draw inspiration from things that we see in our day to day life. 

 

My thesis projects have helped me to think of new tools and techniques that could be used by other designers for inspiration. This thesis might be a sweet end to my MFA journey but for my typography journey, it is just a new beginning where I am visualizing type with a completely different and a fresh mindset.