Category Archives: Alien Type

Alien Type Evaluation

‘You decide what they are trying to say – but your designs must work in terms of a human film audience understanding the translation reveal at the end of the film. You must base your designs on having explored a variety of non-Latin letterforms, goldsmiths and printers marks and other sign and symbol systems.’

Screen Shot 2017-06-04 at 17.52.45I struggled at the start of this brief, at first I hated the thought of what it was asking for, however I had the choice of this brief or another memorial one. However I thought I would try this one after researching for the other one, this wasted a bit of time which I was annoyed about but I’m glad I changed my mind.

I like the thought behind my design decisions for my alien type. Creating sketches and looking into non-latin letterforms and symbols such as arabic writing and Zapf Dingbats helped me come away from trying to make letterforms but symbols instead. I have mocked up the type in a classically linked crop field, as the circular design was inspired by this. This was my least favourite brief out of them all and I allocated myself the least time for it, however I’m happy with the outcome. If I were to do it again I think I would experiment with more abstract shapes to create a really engaging design.

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Alien Type – Digital

Here is my digitalised version of my sketches for the alien type brief. I wanted to use different circle designs for each letter to make the type more interesting . Using a variety of tools in illustrator including the rotate, reflect and shapes to build each circle.

I used a grid inside illustrator and a box to make sure my letters were evenly spaced and the same height and width, this allowed me to keep consistency in my typeface.

Because the idea of this typeface was inspired by crop circles I wanted to create a mock up of the type on a crop field to relate the outcome back to the outcome of the brief which was type inside an alien movie.

I didn’t want to make the type to obvious or completely understandable as I wanted there to be some reasoning behind the letterforms.

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I like how it looks on this photoshop version with the letterforms, it looks interesting and you would want to find out more what it says.

The word spelled is ‘death’ giving the aliens a sinister message to the humans in the film. Each circle represents a point of each letters, so if you connect them together you can find the message, that can be translated at the end of the film.

Alien Type – Sketches

After completing some quick rough sketches for the alien type brief I found two that I liked and thought could work well. The first being with rectangles that represent a part of each letter, however upon looking at it now could seem quite obvious when there needs to be a translation for the audience at the end of the film.

I liked the idea of the circles which I thought could be linked to crop circles, hugely linked to aliens. Each circle would represent the corner of each letter

I like this idea and would like to experiment digitally with it on Illustrator with more detail added.

Arabic Characters

Arabic typefaces is something I want to research as the brief asks to look at non-latin letterforms. This lettering is very ‘alien’ looking to me as I have no sense at all what they could possibly be saying. Basing my lettering on some of the techniques used in this lettering, such as the dots above and below letters, the straight lines and sharp curves and looking at the joining of characters.

The brief states for 5 characters to be design, however this could also be a phrase if I decide thats how its translates as Chinese letterforms often represent a whole word.

Zapf Dingbats

TC Zapf Dingbats is one of the more common dingbat typefaces. It was designed by the typographer Hermann Zapf in 1978

This is an interested typeface to look into for the Alien type brief as it is a typeface that isn’t legible to the reader however each symbol does have a corresponding letters, something that I could design myself in a similar fashion.

David Carson, radical editor of experimental music magazine Ray Gun, lent the font a degree of notoriety in 1994 when he printed an interview with Bryan Ferry in the magazine entirely in the symbols-only font – the double-page spread was of course, quite illegible and would have to be interpreted like a cryptogram for those unfamiliar with the font. He said he did it because the interview was “incredibly boring” and that upon searching his typeface collection for a suitable font and ending at Zapf Dingbats, decided to use it with hopes of making the article interesting again.’

(REFERENCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zapf_Dingbats)

Chinese Letterforms

You decide what they are trying to say – but your designs must work in terms of a human film audience understanding the translation reveal at the end of the film. You must base your designs on having explored a variety of non-Latin letterforms, goldsmiths and printers marks and other sign and symbol systems.

I have decided to have a quick look into Chinese letterforms as they use symbols to represent full words, so the 5 letterforms I create for this brief could create a phrase or series of words that they are trying to communicate.

The image below shows some examples of this. There is a traditional and implied version of each letter, and also versions that have been hand written and versions that are digital created using straight lines and geometric curves.