Illustrative Typography

Within the second double page spread, I wanted to use the quote describing what ‘The Genderbread Man’ was as the main part of the page. Since just writing it out on the computer wasn’t giving the effect I wanted, I decided that to draw it out would be a better idea. Over the past few weeks, I’d spent a lot of my free time developing my hand drawn typography so this was the perfect way to develop my technique further. Process below:

I tried to lay out the quote as best as I could, having the area of the body to the left and what it represented to the right so that there was a clear pace with how to read it. After I had finished drawing it, I scanned it in and then traced it on Illustrator so that I could use it within my article. I tried to stick with using orange as the colour as I liked the original pieces of work I was doing that had used orange text.

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The next thing to do was add it onto the article. I tried various compositions and ways of displaying it with the image. Sometimes you can struggle to see what a piece of work looks like on screen and whether the colours work so as I continued to change elements on the page, I printed these out to see what they looked like. I liked the overlay of the typography on top of the photography however this did not seem to work with orange text as the colour of the image blended with the colour orange – using white for the typography did work being placed on top of the image. I tried to change the colour of the image to black and white but at that point, I still wanted to use colour for my other images so I didn’t want to make the decision to change the image to b&w when all the other photographs were staying in colour. A composition that seemed to work best was having the photograph to the right and then the typography on a separate page in white and orange.

Since I had made the decision to have a cover page, it meant I needed to include all of my body text on the other two spreads and single page on the back. In the above paragraph I said that the composition that worked best was having the image and typography separate, however, this would mean having to put some body text onto the image in order to fit all of the article onto the pages. The image is a combination of dark and light colours and I found it was an awkward background to place text onto. I decided that for this spread to work I would need to change the image I was using. I also took a second look at the illustrated typography and realised that it didn’t flow well and there was too many words used which is what made it confusing to read. I edited the piece on Illustrator and changed the words in the middle so that it was clear what you were reading and at which order. See changes below:

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I began experimenting with different images to use and I found that this illustration worked much better with the photographs I had take of the male. Unfortunately the orange wasn’t working on the pages because it was getting lost within the colour of the photo. You’ll see below the photographs of my experiments.

The first image: I like how the body text sits to the side of the image however it does need more work because it’s such a long piece of text to try and read. With the quote, it would need to be placed as the second spread within the article because it is placed more towards the end so I decided to use a different image because I felt that this particular one worked better an introductory image; he has open body language with the way he is sat so it invites you to read the conversation that is written in the article.

Screen Shot 2017-05-04 at 16.52.23.png

The second image: I used a portrait image and cut out half of his profile so that you still identify who it was. The illustrative typography sat really well on image, and I cropped the image so that I could have the body text to the left of it. I still wanted to include the colour orange so I decided to do this by using orange lines creating a box around the text.

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After creating the above spread and deciding to use the image of the male sat on the chair as the first of the 2 double page spreads, I continued with the other pages. I wanted the article to be really fun and playful throughout so since all of the photography I have used for this article is exactly that (e.g. image of socks and sliders; topless woman), using illustrative typography would add to that. I decided that I wanted to use more illustrative typography, definitely on the first spread as well as what is already on the second spread. I placed the image of the topless woman on the front cover because I thought that it was a really bold and probably quite questionable image. Also, I think that it would question the reader into wondering what the article is about so meaning they want to open it up and read it. Below is a PDF file of the article I have so. Tomorrow (05/05) there is group tutorials with other students so I plan to get some feedback from the current direction I am heading – so confirmation on whether they like the illustrative typography and the pace of the article.

Current look of article: transgendersurgery3


Author: ellenreiddesign

First year Graphic Communication student at Cardiff Metropolitan University.

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