Today we had a critique in Design Fundamentals and the students presented their typography portraits. The guidelines were  to create a portrait with Adobe Illustrator using the characters found on a standard keyboard.

It’s important for those who are new to design to treat type as a  graphic element and not as if you were typing a research paper. It’s also important to be playful with your type. Next time you look at a character or letter  on your keyboard I encourage you to note the weight, the curves and the overall form. Does it feel like an earring? No? Well, look at the work above.

Here are three different approaches to the same problem. The first image and detail was created by Hedyan. When the image popped up on the projector there was an audible gasp. The students loved it, and then I asked Hedyan to zoom in and a student raised her hand and asked  “can I take a picture?” The detail, layering and colors are amazing.

And the second image was created by Frank. He created  two Manga inspired figures. His portrait look so effortless, but trust me it wasn’t. He labored over font weight and positioning. And that’s what good art and design does. It feels effortless as if it magically wove itself together.

And the third image was created by Michaela. She put so much detail and so many layers in her bird. The background looks like a photo, but it’s not! Gradients and blurred characters.

Well done guys. I look forward to seeing what you create in your next assignment.