Sunday, January 15, 2012

Faux Snow Job

It snowed outside today and blanketed the city in white for the first time this Winter. Just in time to share some very recent snowflake work from a few of my Experimental Typography students. I know it may seem contrary, but I had them each design snowflakes as a warm-up exercise on the first day of class two weeks ago. Actually, I call them "word crystals". I assign students to design three snowflake-like crystals from a list of words about winter, snow and ice. They must use just one word and one font per flake, and are asked to work quickly and be playful with each. Just as the single word requires the students to look closely at the shape and the structure of it very carefully, the word alone is also responsible for creating the structure of the snowflake once a repeat pattern is defined. Most were symmetrical, but not all, and I continue to be pleasantly surprised by their varied outcomes.
      The three snowflakes in the top row are designed by Sarah Ervine. Words used in each (from left to right) are Glacier; Avalanche; and Blizzard. Second row from left is Marisa Tanji: Chilling; Sarah Rudback: Silence; Jeremy Grant: Glacier. Third row is Jeremy Grant: Winter; Sarah Rudback: Exquisite; Marisa Tanji: Sledding.

The three feather-like dendrites above are designed by Susan Schumacher. Each were created in Photoshop using the three words, Silence, Snowangel, and Snowbird. Reversed out of black, they would more closely resemble a starburst of fireworks because of the beautiful contrail of letters she created. Such fine flakes have greater detail to reveal, so please click away on all.
      Although Brendan Lattin's work below is more like a snowstorm than a snowflake, it is a beautiful texture none-the-less. We will soon be doing more experiments with lettering, texture and typographical patterns so I hope to be sharing more of my student's work here in the near future.


  1. these word crystals spread good good good good vibrations - all the way to my little letterpress studio. Lovely.

  2. Gorgeeeeeeeeeeous, love them :)


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