donny nguyen.
donny nguyen.
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space issues #3
space issues 3

for the third iteration, i wanted to use blocky lettering to imply the issue at hand. after playing around, the sketches i ended up with reminded me of the first things first manifesto. i was really taken with the lettering used in the original version so i used a similar version here, at the risk of contradicting the manifesto’s intent.

part of what i love about the lettering is the contrast not only of the widths of the stems to the negative space between them but to the space between letters as well. what really makes the letters shine for me is the angled terminal at the top of each “t.” i really wanted to try and work that into my design but it just didn’t make sense to.

the curious thing about the lettering to me is how the space between the letters really influences the perception of the height to width ratio. when spaced so closely together, as in the original manifesto, the letters seem quite tall. as you might see above, the lone “i” above seems quite comfortable on its own but its length seems to be emphasised when placed with the rest of the letters in “issues.” anyway, that’s an aside.

the group of designers, photographers and students essentially pledged to devote their skills to higher purposes, specifically over hawking wares for the sake of consumerism and nothing more. this poster might not suggest the opposite since there really is no great purpose to the poster. as with the others, this one’s just supposed to cause a smirk maybe and be ephemeral. and if people like it enough, sure i’ll make prints. but i recently worked on something where i was told, why bother put the all this thought and effort into something if no one’s going to get it? well, like the manifesto kind of suggests, it’s about doing a good job but i think that a good job should be done on everything you do.

if i put effort in and something isn’t communicated well, then it wasn’t as good a job obviously. but the challenge is to make that communication work, even in something as silly as this. the real irony is that you probably got none of this just from looking at the poster, unless of course you’re familiar with the original 1963 manifesto.

i chose yellow specifically because i don’t use this colour enough. in trying to keep things simple, it’s tough to use yellow on white but why not put it on black? sometimes yellow is perceived as cowardly but i think it works in an ironical sense here. i don’t think it’s cowardly to admit that you have issues. on the flip side, yellow is also perceived as bright, happy, and cheerful (especially in contrast to the usually negative black). again, nothing wrong with admitting that one has issues. accept it and move on, right? finally, i chose to imply the space issue but simply leaving space there. you can either see the space for what it is was intended or you can fill it in an personalise the poster by admitting to ¬†your own issue.