GDE720 - Week 2

GDE720 – Week 2 : Workshop Challenge

As can be seen by the previous blog post, before starting this week I wanted to fully understand the history of my village and be able to succintly create a list of words that I feel demonstrate the history and future progression of Osbaldwick.

  • Medieval
  • Sustainable
  • Green
  • Water / bridges
  • Less funding – faded paintwork / wooden signs

The letterforms I noticed on my visit round the village really showed how there is quite a shift between different typefaces around the village – and quite a lack of reflection of it’s identity. By utilising some of the medieval letterforms found predominantely on the gravestones, the carved letterforms on the wooden or stone signs and the fading paintwork gives me a lot to work with. With my typeface I want to not only consider the way the letterforms look but the texture too.

I was wondering if I should play around with the Medieval spelling os Osbaldwick as seen in the Domesday Book : Osboldewic. Perhaps giving more of a nod to this spelling or the shaping of the words would be a better represenation than using this older spelling, as it’s not it’s current or future identity.

I began doodling some of the letters included in the name of the village – separating some letterforms to see if I can play about with the medieval style of lettering and modernise this. I really love the carved letterforms found around the village – these were carved into wood and stone and felt very historical as well as modern. As you can see from the “W” above, I wanted to incorporate a more flat version of this carved letterform, using shading along the lettering to create the sense of it being carved. This could work when also trying to include mroe medieval fonts such as the Carolingian typeface – combining the two, as seen in the letter “a” above gives a lovely results. I also took a picture of a stencilled piece of stone because I loved the worn sense this gave to the lettering and would love to incorporate this – but could perhaps be messy.

I also want to ensure the “b” and “d” have clubbed heavy top lines. I also noted, at the bottom of the page, possibly including some bridge connection imagery – I’m still yet to consider how this could be done, but it could create a really beautiful effect.

I’ve really enjoyed creating this typeface but I know it’s still not there and requires improvement. It’s a whole new experience for me and it’s a fascinating insight into how much thought and detail goes into typefaces and illustrative letterforms.

I began by putting my inspiration and photographs into illustrator on my artboard – I used the Carolingian typeface as my base font for this exercise, taking inspiration from the flicks and lengthier ligature.

I then attempted to incorporate the effect of the light hitting the bevelled letterforms on the wooden signs in this medieval font. I like this effect and it makes it a tad more modern.

In photoshop I played about with effects to see what this did – using a white paint peeling texture, I overlaid this on the letterforms and used both “lighten” and “divide” layer styles. This gave two really gorgeous effects:

The white effect could be quite striking against a dark background so I will experiment more with this.

Initially I had an idea of combining a modern typeface with an older typeface to represent the sharp contrast between the old village and the new development. I considered using a “bridge” shaped line to divide these two letterforms:

Lining up the new modern bevelled lettering and the medieval font has quite a nice effect, it’s just not polished enough yet. I’m going to keep experimenting and see where I get!

Final Outcome

This was a work in progress and I was really proud of the developments I’d made. After recreating a Carolingian font, I then decided to scrap the idea of splitting the fonts into sections as this looked messy and wouldn’t be usable across the village.

I kept the font as a whole consistent font and added the peeling paint effect:

I then played about with this a bit in photoshop, trialling embossing and adding texture to match the embossed effects on most of the examples I photographed last week:

Upon reflection, I really love the effect of the two toned piece – you can really see the texture in the letterforms but also the light and dark reflection reminds me of the strong history of this village – it also sits in the shadow of York and I feel this is so well portrayed here.

I also really love the embossed lettering, by adjusting the level of height of embossing, I could play around with the depth and impact. I’m struggling to choose between the two but feel I don’t have to.

For a powerful, bold impactful lettering for the village, the two toned shadow effect works really well – it could be a cool header for newsletters etc.

The embossed effect would be more valuable on signage or perhaps future fingerposts:

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