By Sarah Hyndman
I chatted to Louis Bradley of Dazed and Confused Magazine about typographic rebellion and how the ultimate way to rebel against the increasing ubiquity of the sans serif might be to use fonts that provoke a reaction like Comic Sans or Papyrus.
“How to start a revolution with Comic Sans. Could something as simple as font have been the catalyst for the spread of punk or behind Donald Trump’s win? We explore the hidden power of typeface”
The idea that something as simple as typeface can be an integral part of a protest movement might sound a bit far-fetched. But the role of fonts is just as important as actual words in communicating a message to the masses. It’s why you don’t ever stray too far away from Arial or Times New Roman on your CV – you don’t want to come across as too much of an avant-garde loose canon by opting for Lucida Handwriting or Bradley Hand. Or why you don’t commonly use curly script-like letters for your uni essays.
Sarah Hyndman creates workshops and events designed to teach the art of typography and deconstruct the power of design. The ‘Never Mind The Typography’ exhibition outlines how the angst and rebellion of punk was expressed in every fibre of the counterculture, even right down to the lettering. “When punk (and its typeface) arrived in the mid-70s, the design at that point in time was very traditional and old-fashioned, kind of nostalgic and backwards looking,” she explains. It was this reaction to the rigid restrictions of modernism that gave birth to a whole new movement in innovative design. Cast your mind back to the creator of the ransom note style and the Sex Pistols logo Jamie Reid, and the slick layered graphics on British Independent album sleeves created by Barney Bubbles, who also designed the logo for NME magazine. “With all of this comes the layering of meanings, layering of images, often lots of references and subtexts that were put in so you had to be in the know to understand the references. You know from that type style that the album is going to be in a certain rebellious underground – it’s going to have swearing in it, basically.”
Read the full article in Dazed…
Punk was the anti-Helvetica Design Week interview
2016 is the new 1976 Sarah Hyndman
How Punk changed Graphic Design Sarah Hyndman
Designer and type fanatic Sarah Hyndman shares her most-cherished books with It’s Nice That.
By Rebecca Fulleylove
Sarah Hyndman is a graphic designer, author, researcher and the founder of Type Tasting, an experimental type studio delivering talks, workshops and events. Sarah researches and teaches about the psychology of type and how to use it to communicate more effectively. She runs workshops, gives talks and creates events such as Wine and Type Tastings, which pose the question: “Do you judge a wine by its label?” Sarah is also the author of Why Fonts Matter, which we published an extract from earlier this year that discussed the effects of typography on our emotions. She is just on the cusp of publishing a second book, How to Draw Type and Influence People, which will be published by Laurence King in spring 2017.
The designer’s inspiration comes from outside the design world, taking ideas from different genres and exploring them through the lens of typography. With this abundance of influences we wanted to find out what sits atop Sarah’s bookshelf and lucky for us it’s a diverse mix of books on packaging design, typography and food.
Vetements, Brioni and Kanye Agree: It’s Gothic Time
New York Times, August 9th
By Max Berlinger
“It’s been used for some of the most sacred texts in the Western world,” said Michael Bierut, a partner at the design firm Pentagram and a senior critic at the Yale School of Art. “At the same time, it’s used by biker gangs, street gangs, heavy-metal groups and death-metal groups. It seems like Satan has come to own it more than God.”
Thanks to its longevity, the typeface has accrued a wide range of cultural associations and the versatility to convey both a sense of reverential authority and rebellion. “I think there’s always that double edge, a duality that goes on in everything,” said Sarah Hyndman, the author of “Why Fonts Matter.”
Read the full article.
How Type Can Tell the History of Your City
A London designer leads a tour of her neighborhood signage
By Ellen Himelfarb for AIGA’s Eye on Design.
**BOOK HERE for the final two Dalston Type Safaris taking place this year**
“On a recent Tuesday evening, I followed Sarah Hyndman around Dalston, one of London’s most creative and fast-gentrifying neighborhoods. Her so-called Dalston Type Safari hadn’t sounded like the most exotic endeavor, to this local, at least. It resembled a safari insofar as we roamed among native creatures, some growling to themselves, and kept alert for dangerous beasts of the wheeled variety.
“Yet Hyndman, author of Why Fonts Matter and an expert on the psychology of typefaces, came armed with vast amounts of wisdom (and a tote stuffed with gummy treats, popcorn, and hand-pressed postcards, lending it all a staycation vibe). I think we all came away as enlightened as if we’d been abroad and back.”
Read the full article…
The theme of Grafik’s Letterform Live this week was ‘Experimental’, and it was an exciting evening to be a part of. My aim for the evening was to bring a bit of ‘bonkers and magic’ at a time of so much anxiety. We filled the bar with jellybeans and asked the 130 audience members to guess each flavour from the style of the typeface on the label. If you weren’t at the event you can still take part in this experiment here.
I spoke about how amazing the human brain is for the skilful way it creates a ‘sub-programme’ to perform the complex task of reading, which your subconscious performs automatically. Your eyes simply glance over a series of marks in a huge array of shapes and sizes and—as if by magic—stories, ideas, memories, songs, smells are conjured up right there in your mind.
Can typefaces represent values such as liberty, equality and truth?
You gather a great deal of meaning about the words a person says from their tone of voice. Are they happy, truthful, authentic? Typefaces/fonts influence your interpretation of the words you read in a similar way. When the font and words are in harmony you are more likely to trust them. When they don’t match the words can feel less authentic.
This is a new survey exploring which fonts best communicate some of the core American values taken from the Declaration of Independence. Very early results are in (you can see them at the end of the survey), although not enough people have yet taken part for these to be meaningful. Full results will be published when enough people have taken part. Do you think your answers will match the majority?
Click here to take the survey, you will see the early results at the end.