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Everyday life often provides subtle but pivotal motivation for creation. A simple object or observation may facilitate a long journey of discovery and creation. For this project, a paper clip, with its curves, efficient proportions and minimal forms, was a catalyst in the creation of a system of typefaces that would work together with different weights and proportions.
As the result of this 2-year typographic investigation, this poster serves as an announcement celebrating the conclusion and release of our new type family – Ludd.
A homage to Ned Ludd, the symbolic leader of the Luddites, an early 19th-century movement that protested the social and economic changes spurred by the new technology of the Industrial Revolution. Far from decrying technology in design however, this poster invokes an attempt to balance the tension between the digital and letterpress technology that influenced the typeface’s creation.
Working with images generated throughout the design process I used various letterpressed proofs and experimental abstractions as the base imagery for this poster. These abstracted letterforms were layered and combined to articulate some of the unique formal and conceptual characteristics within the system.
I imposed a structure using typographic armatures to contrast the floating planes of abstracted forms. This structure with its exactness and crispness, allows the informational typography to play against the low resolution and textured background. This play of textures continues the dialog of mixing old (letterpress) and contemporary computer technology. Reinforcing the dichotomy inherent in Ludd’s creation.
Being both designer and client provided me with several distinctive advantages. While representing the dynamic quality of the typeface through the use of images derived from the design process itself, I was also able to use it as a tool to connect and reconnect with a broader design community, alumni, colleagues, even family and friends. This poster acted as both a teaser for the show and as a visual representative of the idiosyncratic nature of this quirky typographic system and its complexities.