Typeface Spread and Video
Communications Studio I — Fall 2017
Project Brief: Using an understanding of grids and hierarchy, create a two-page spread that introduces a broad and diverse audience to the typeface, Vendetta. Then, design a 60-second video that highlights the unique characteristics and personality of Vendetta in the context of its use and in relation to its larger type family, if that exists.
Development 1.0 — Research and Analysis
To familiarize myself with the typeface Vendetta, I researched its origins, influences, and possible uses. In doing so, I obtained the following key information:
- Vendetta was created by the American typeface designer, John Downer, in 1998. Throughout his career, Downer developed ten typefaces, with the majority akin to Venetian old-style typeface. This can be attributed to his fascination with the methodologies surrounding Italian Humanist text and the more formal Old-Style Renaissance type.
- Vendetta’s construction is an unusual merge of calligraphic and geometric features — this includes non-round, faceted counters and bowls, rectangular slab serifs, and flat bracket connections.
- As a typeface, Vendetta is terse and succinct, and course and rich. Its movements are considered, not spontaneous, and its gait is slow and methodical. At the same time, it’s calligraphic features suggest a personality that isn’t entirely rational — there’s room for familiarity and play.
Development 2.0 — Spread Sketches
In developing the following compositions, I took into consideration, and questioned, three aspects:
- What information do I have?
There are three chunks of information — History and Influence, Characteristics and Anatomy, and Personality. While sketching, I played with grouping that information and placing them in different locations, as well as unifying that information into one large body text.
- What information do I need to emphasize?
The breadth of information present requires some form of hierarchical sorting. When sketching, I identified five visuals that required distinctive priorities — the typeface title, sub-headers, images, quotes/call-outs, and body text.
- What visual language can be incorporated to display the typeface’s personality?
Information chunking, as well as explorations of image and color, contributed to my considerations when sketching. As I said above, Vendetta is an old-style type face with an unique construction — it’s terse and methodical, but can be playful at certain moments.
Development 2.1 — Digital Iterating
Working with type: Heading, Sub-headings, and body
Working with type, color and image:
Final Process Iteration:
Overall, the above composition is not resolved — there still exists opportunity for rethinking the top-right portion of the spread. However, I do think the other quadrants are working more successfully — the image on top-right needs to be integrated into the visual language of its neighbors a bit more.
This assignment was informed heavily by the Typeface video, which was being worked on simultaneously. Although the spread is static, there were moments of tempo and rhythm that I only recognized once working with the video that I was able to bring over into the composition of the spread.