Saw this video online, loved the filming of the beginning/ introduction. It made me wish that we (the first group i was put into, back in Chelsea) made a movie like this. I would love to one day see (in person) and have the opportunity to use a Linotype type casting machine.
I'm feeling a pull towards typography and printmaking more than any other field in graphics.
Can't wait to hopefully experiment in those fields.
Tarek Atrissi is one of my favourite Lebanese Graphic Designers who specializes in Type.
I was looking at his blog and found that in one of his posts he talks about creating a typeface inspired by hand writing, something that i was keen on doing when i developed my ideas for this brief.
Since our start as a design studio, we have been heavily involved in
designing original Arabic typefaces, and through our 10 years of design
practice at Tarek Atrissi Design, we have left a visible mark on the
typographic landscape. Our fonts are to be seen used across the Arab
world, in print, on air, on newspaper headlines and as part of elaborate
corporate identity systems. The last two years haven’t been an
exception: we have designed several corporate and custom Arabic (and
bilingual) fonts for different clients, many of which we haven’t posted
yet on our blog or website.
One font I am particularly proud of and excited about is the font I
am sharing in this blog post. The custom display font for the Arab
Museum of Modern Art, “Mathaf”, a new museum opening today in Doha -
Qatar through its inaugural exhibition “Sajjil”. The Arabic and Latin
font is the result of months of intensive work, and is one of the main
components in the visual identity and branding adopted for the museum.
Unlike many of the typical briefs we usually get for designing custom
fonts, this typeface design commission for such a high profile
organization was really out of the box. It challenged us to put into it
the creativity and experimentation that we usually put into self
initiated type design projects. The bilingual typeface we were asked to
design was more of an artist experimentation: It had to look far from a
digital typeface, but rather a hand scribble; a personal signature; a
quick spontaneous-looking hand writing that looks more like a scribble
taken from an artist’s sketchbook. This request was a particular design
challenge. Especially for an Arabic font as anyone would imagine:
Creating the illusion of a hand written scribble in a script that has
connected letters was a tough task. Which might explain why as a matter
of fact there aren’t this sort of digital Arabic fonts available out
The design process was very exciting and defined by experimentation.
In the first phases of the project we explored all sort of manual
lettering work. The focus was on finding the right formula to create a
spontaneous writing style, while keeping in mind the challenge of
matching the Arabic and Latin parts of the font to communicate the same
spirit. There is basically nothing we did not try: Creating metallic
brushes from Coca-Cola cans and writing with it; Graffiti writing on
large newspaper sheets; Asking extended family to write quickly in
charcoal pens; and looking in our archive for collected old Arabic
newspapers which still used manual hand calligraphy for typesetting all
headlines. Several design rounds made us finally use the outcome of a
specific handwriting that filled in our stack of sketches. This material
was scanned, digitized, and then developed and refined further to
create the basis of the design. Twenty two rounds of presentations were
needed to polish the final design. The final character set, particularly
in Arabic, included a wide set of ligatures that allowed a more natural
flow of the script. The final design echoed in one way or another some
of the initial inspirations we used while developing this typeface:
street hand made lettering that could be found in different sizes, forms
and textures- and that I have for long documented as part of my visual
research. Previews of the final font, as well as some selected samples
of from the process, are shown as part of the images showcased here.
Above: Preview images of the process development of the design
Without being labeled as an Arabic font with calligraphic features or
a font with contemporary typographic features, the Mathaf-script
typeface is above all a font reflecting a personal expression. An
expression that is maybe typical to any piece present in a Museum of
To me personally, regardless of the final outcome of the design, the
simple fact that we were commissioned for this project is a double
rewarding honor: On one hand, it is a confirmation that the type of
Arabic fonts we have often focused on developing are highly in demand:
Fonts designed by graphic designers for graphic designers; fonts that
have strong characters and that are ideal for usage in corporate design
and branding context, and that are designed to communicate a very
specific mood or message. On the other hand, by being asked to take part
of visualizing the written voice of “Mathaf”, we are in one way or
another given the honor of being part of Arab modern art,
typographically speaking at least.
Above: Samples of the font usage within the branding and identity
system of Mathaf. Showing the countdown posters for the opening event;
application of the font on pins and printed matters; and screenshots
from promotional video using the font for on-screen titles.
I was flicking through my arabic design blogs that i had bookmarked on my laptop over the year and stumbled across this.
I think i fell in love with these pieces by George Chamoun, a Lebanese Artist/Jeweler born in Sweden. They are "Digital Collage Series" called Iconatomy.
I was surprised how well the two images were incorporated, forming a uniform image, so smartly put together.
"This is what I’ve been working on for the last three weeks. It’s the
result of a workshop in Fine Arts with the theme “icons” (computer
icons/celebrities/fashion icons/religious icons, etc).
I chose to work with movie icons from two different eras. This
project has been a lot about ideals, patterns and anatomy. I named the
project Iconatomy from the words “icon” and “anatomy.”
I have worked with a collage technique, but in a computer, which for
me is a first. I am really pleased with the end product and I want to
develop this concept further.
Edit: Two things people are wondering about that I thought I could make clear.
1. The pictures are not morphed in any way. What you see is a collage of
two different people in each picture. Did it take me a long time to
find the right pictures? Hell yes it did! :-)
2. People are commenting on the “comparison” I’m making with these
pictures. About that, I just want to say that I am not comparing
anything here. Sorry if you feel that your favourite actor or actress
was “paired up” with someone you don’t like.
Thank you everyone for liking it so much, I’m really blown away by the feedback I’m getting!"