Thursday, June 08, 2006
~:D E S I G N:~
See these lillies? How mouth-watering they are? They are perfect. Growing in my front yard right now. I hope to create something as close to these as I can get. I am inspired! So I have signed up for Holger Kappenstien's Typeface Design class at PC and I'm so excited. I'll be able to take it providing it doesn't conflict with one of my own classes. Thank you Holger! He says that by week two, we are to commit to a name for the font we're creating and stick with it for the entire quarter. I've a few ideas/options to consider that I'd like your feedback on.
This means "Being with child; heavy with young or eggs; pregnant." Would be really cool to design a face, each character with a bump or elegant protrusion, each balanced with asymmetry, which is how my body feels. Flourishing in this rare life-giving state is fascinating. What better way to honor this special time than to design a face during this transformation? Only drawback is that I might find this gets old after a while. But sticking to it would be a labor of love, if it ended up being difficult. Which is the nature of creativity. So...hmmm. I'm really tempted to tackle this idea.
I have an older brother who took his life when he was 34. This happened about 8 years ago. One of those experiences that's changed me forever. And continues to teach me things. I thought honoring him by creating a face that celebrates his personality - the best of his personality would be a great tribute. Another labor of love. Tommy and I were so very different from each other. I'd say the only two real similarities were 1. that we shared the same sense of humor. Oh God, could he make me laugh. I miss that. 2. We had the same big toe. No kidding. To remember his presence, all I need to do it take off my socks and stare at my big toe. That's tommy.
The greatest thing Tommy accomplished was hiking the Appalachian Trail. Yep - he was a beautiful thru hiker. His trail name was "Darling Boy" - something our Mother called him.
I was thinking that the face should look nothing like me. It should be physically strong. He was an ox of a person. He was ruddy. Elegant. Incredibly brave. Sturdy. And he loved the outdoors. He would have survived a nuclear war - would have ended up a king if the tables turned so. He did not have book smarts - but an instinctive awareness of how things worked naturally. And he was spiritual. And his anger. Fierce. You'd want him on your side if in battle. Tommy fought off monsters. The only one that got him in the end was what he saw in the mirror. His self esteem damaged from too many poor decisions and a learning disability that left him feeling less than everyone else.
But man - I'd love to make this face out of wood. Wood cuts. Or twigs. Pinestraw. I dunno - some kind of natural material that I could vectorize. (is that a word??) Something sturdy to honor him. I'd want you to look at it and say, "Hero. Thru hiker. Anne's brother, Tommy." And want to know him.
Only drawback is that I want this to be something totally for myself. Is guilt part of my motivation? Or would that just be part of my journey? I dunno.
3. "Anne-Davnes" or "Davnes"
This would be another self portrait. I love calligraphy. Have developed my own style by now, based upon Copperplate. Addressing envelopes with a steel nib dipped in ink is yoga for the hands and soul. I absolutely love it. Can't get enough of it! My calligraphy is somewhat free-spirited and irregular. Gives a nod to the past, but is rather contemporary. There's a lot of grace there - irregular grace. I just love it. Makes me happy.
Were I to turn this into a font, that irregularity would need to be somewhat diminished or harnessed. This would be a face with rhythm, but with a level of consistency. I think it would be terribly exciting to decide which characters have descenders or ascenders that can reach high or dip deeply. I think I can do that, as long as there are but a few special ones without them all fighting for attention. To be a calligrapher who has designed a version of their natural hand for keystroking would be very, very rewarding. I think this would give me the most natural high out of all my options. The strokes themselves give me great pleasure. I know what you're thinking - you perverts. :)
I think this last option is the one I want to go with. but is it big-headed of me to name it after myself? I thought Davnes would be so elegant. It's Norwegian and should I have a girl someday, I'll give that name to her as well.
Saying no to the first 2 options is something I'm not quite ready to do. I want this exercise to be pleasant but to stretch me, too. What do you guys think? Any opinions?