Typographic love: Handmade Type

Design & Style

We've already seen various examples of hand-drawn or manually modified type, and Tien-Min Liao's handmade type is clearly a brilliant take on this subject. The concept is fairly simple and its execution is very interesting, it's sort of an abstract interpretation of letters translated into hand gestures as you will see. As she states in her portfolio, this is a typographic experiment that explores the relationships between upper-case letters and lower-case letters, and also records the transformation between them. With this in mind she took on the task of painting her own hands/arms to create the precise gesture that can form letters in both upper and lower case.

By changing the gesture, the uppercase roman I (top left) shifts to a lowercase roman i (top right), a uppercase italic I (botton left) and a lowercase italic i (botton right.)

The simple shift of gestures to form each letter puts in perspective how different each letter is and what elements need to be changed/shift to transform it into a capital letter for example. The animated versions of this experiment show this transition between one state to the other, which I have to say is impressive and brilliant. It's a fairly simple concept that was taken to another level of execution, one that puts type transformation in motion on a human, dynamic scale. The rest of her work is equally impressive, I specially love her logo design and animation she did for Celeo Ramos.

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