Visual Bits #319> Letters And Quotes Written In Style

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Paperless Push: Digital Postal Mail Explored

In a future, not too distant from where we exist now, there will be a generation who won’t even know what snail mail is — or was. The phrase will entirely drop from our lexicon like a rock tossed into a dark lake, never to surface again except for nostalgic purposes. “Hey, remember when people used to lick these things, put them on an envelope (whatever that even is), and then send them to their family and friends with writing on and in them? Super weird, right?” The future of going paperless is continuing to grow, and trees around the world are breathing a sigh of relief.

Visual Bits #279> Letters Have Emotion Too…



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Arcano: A Font Made of Calligraphy

Isn’t it wonderful when modern technology takes something old, and instead of lessening its meaning and beauty, instead enhances it, making it something beautifully accessible for all? Doing just that, this aptly named new set of glyphs was created over a painstakingly long four months of hand-crafted work. Arcano is a new type set which was completely designed by hand, letter by letter, to create a surprisingly modern look using the classic forms of calligraphy. Inspired by a variety of forms, from nature, to symbols, icons, jewels and many more, the result is something classically modern.

A Photographic Alphabet Around the House

Sure to please the typographer and photographer in all of us, Vienna born still-life photographer Bela Borsodi makes incredibly accurate letters from household items – very carefully arranged. Created for WAD Magazine #39, his photographs capture the objects in their 3D space, flattening their contrasting outlines to such an extent that it becomes difficult to separate letter from room. You can find more of Borsodi’s extensive editorial, advertising and film work at belaborsodi.com

Black/White: Beautiful Chalkboard Typography

Dana Tanamachi is the creator of some very refined chalk signage. Her works have a classic feel reminiscent of extra-fancy title cards from 1920’s silent films, mixing a healthy dose of typographical styles with strong linear flourishes. Her custom lettered signs have been commissioned by clients such as Google, Adidas, EveryDay with Rachael Ray, Harber Collins UK, West Elm and Rugby Ralph Lauren. See her process video at the bottom of this post, then head to danatanamachi.com for more of her black and white masterpieces

Industrial Typography: Architecturally Styled Letters

London based Jing Zhang started out designing for the fashion industry, but we’re glad she expanded her talents to include these very different 3D letters. Each character looks like a small slice of industrial space, including ladders, pipes and tiny people. Keep in touch with Zhang through Twitter or head to mazakii.com for more

Beautiful French Alphabets From Years Past

These vintage pages from the French book Album de Lettres are especially gorgeous examples of classic typography. Each page features a full alphabet, printed in the colors of yesteryear and laid out on a grid. Next time you need a sign painted, pull out these examples for a classic touch. To see many more alphabets and for highly detailed scans of the original pages, visit pilllpat on flickr.

Alphabet Illustrations Play with Form and Meaning


London based illustrator, Maggie Li, has created 5 excellent posters that experiment with the form and meaning behind the alphabet. Some play with possible interpretations behind each letter usage while other examples are visually abstract and push the limits of font legibility, only finding clarity in their whole 26 letter form.

To see more of her playful illustrations follow her on Twitter, check out her blog or see her website maggieli.co.uk

A Font as Sharp as Barbed Wire: The Devils Rope


Using the material that tamed the wild west, designer Andrew Effendy has created an artistic font using steel wire. Pulled across two wooden posts, the wires are twisted to resemble the spiny fencing, with longer strands at the barbed sections forming the letters A through Z. The font has an undeniably sinister look to it. With such an iconic form, the work could easily be interpreted as a commentary on language barriers or how the written word and it’s form can either help or hinder dialogue. For more on Effendy’s projects see his website at drewfnd.com.

Andrew Effendy now works with us as a full-time graphic designer at Column Five, our parent company (columnfivemedia.com)