Typography

Art History Masterpieces Transformed Into Surreal Typefaces

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Typography and art nerds, this one’s for you. Israeli designer Oded Ezer (who we first spotted on Co.Design) enjoys playing with type to create unusual fonts — and he’s designed some humorous typefaces inspired by the annals of art history. Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring, Katsushika Hokusai’s The Great Wave off Kanagawa, and Michelangelo’s David are just a few of the famous artworks that Ezer transforms into type-friendly images. Fingers, facial hair, and phalluses are dissected from well-known paintings and sculptures to form letters, using the artwork itself as a backdrop. It’s a bizarre, but fun remix of art’s greatest masterpieces.
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10 Cheerful Architectural Designs That Make Us Happy

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There’s a lot of ambivalence when it comes to the word “happy” — and we’re not just talking about our collective exhaustion regarding Pharrell’s eternal single from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack (make it stop). But since it’s a new year and our jaded levels are set to low, we’re looking at fun and inspiring examples of “happy” architecture. These cheerful buildings and delightful designs aim to please the eye and lift the spirits with their vibrant palettes and pleasant facades. Here are a few happy works of architecture we hope will make you smile.
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10 Typographic Art Installations

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Typography enthusiasts know that sometimes there’s nothing more satisfying than an elegant and expressive typeface. There is a science behind composing and arranging type, but often it is used for pure artistic expression. After spotting a unique typographic sculpture on Colossal that doubles as a bus shelter (featured below), we searched for other font-friendly installations that appeal to our inner typography nerd and explore our interaction with text (and art) in various environments.
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Magnified Photos of Tears as Otherworldly Aerial Landscapes

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If scars are the roadmaps of our bodies, then tears are the maps of our souls — at least according to this photo series by Rose-Lynn Fisher, which we first spotted on Ego-AlterEgo. The Topography of Tears looks at 100 human tears through a standard light microscope. Magnified, they appear as vast aerial landscapes. “The project began in a period of personal change, loss, and copious tears. One day I wondered if my tears of grief would look any different from my tears of happiness — and I set out to explore them up close,” the artist writes on her website. Indeed, tears of joy and sorrow do appear to be different. “Although the empirical nature of tears is a chemistry of water, proteins, minerals, hormones, antibodies and enzymes, the topography of tears is a momentary landscape, transient as the fingerprint of someone in a dream. This series is like an ephemeral atlas,” Fisher poetically concludes. Get lost in the typography of tears in our gallery.
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Inspiring Quotes Beautifully Illustrated on the Same Chalkboard Each Week

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Every week, a strictly anonymous pair of Columbus College of Art & Design seniors (they go by the name Dangerdust) take over a chalkboard in an empty classroom on the third floor of an academic building, leaving painstakinglycrafted illustrated quotes in their wake. The illustrations, which we first spotted on Laughing Squid, run the gamut from a type-heavy Jessica Hische quote to a Bill Cosby quote accompanied by the ultimate TV dad thumbs-up. Sometimes this weekly endeavor takes up to 11 hours, according to the pair of Advertising & Graphic Design students behind the endeavor, but it’s still a refreshing change from the usual grind. “When you’re working on long extended projects for graphic design classes it’s easy to… lose motivation. I think we’re tired of the computer, and [chalking] gives us motivation.” As do their chalkboards.
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12 Books That Indulge the Senses

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Rebecca Steinitz’s beautiful essay about the smell of books, published in The Millions this week, inspired us to seek out books that indulge all five senses. We’re always on the lookout for unusual designs that boldly go where no book has gone before. Luckily, there are people like us out there who want a truly tactile experience with their books — reads you can taste, smell, and more. Here are 12 book designs that cater to the senses.
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Whimsical Illustrations of Rooms Composed With Words

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Thomas Broomé, a Swedish artist we learned about on Fubiz, creates illustrations of rooms composed entirely of words. The artist doesn’t randomly assign words to objects; he defines the objects themselves with text. The word “wall” repeats across the walls of rooms and becomes increasingly distorted with the changing perspective. Words, letters, and lines become patterns and form. Give the artist’s whimsical rooms a read in our gallery.
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Photos of Graceful, Nude Typography [NSFW]

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You could describe Anastasia Mastrakouli‘s Naked Silhouette Alphabet artworks as a photo or printmaking series since she uses her nude body to imprint her limbs and flesh against a steamy wall of glass. Individually, images of letters like “D” appear to be a voyeuristic snapshots, but Mastrakouli’s alphabet — which we first saw on Beautiful/Decay — is gracefully choreographed. The series is most powerful when viewed as a whole. We’ve shared more of Mastrakouli’s nude alphabet in our gallery.
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This ‘Effing Typeface’ Is the Dirtiest Font You’ll Ever See [NSFW]

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Now that everyone under 40 is an amateur graphic designer who can use “kern” in a sentence, the Internet is bursting with what you might call “typography porn.” Brooklyn-based designer Alex Merto makes that figurative term literal with his Effing Typeface, an alphabet where A is for anus, B looks like a pair of breasts, and so on. The font isn’t for the delicate design geeks among us, but those who don’t mind mixing their chaste love for typography with dirtier proclivities can page through Merto’s NSFW ABCs, which we discovered via HuffPost, below.
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10 Obscure Punctuation Marks That Should Really Get More Play

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Recently, we were apprised of a proposed addition to the world of punctuation: the “ElRey Mark,” a symbol that looks a bit like an exclamation point with a dot at each end and is meant to be read as “somewhere between the deadpan period and the excitable exclamation point.” That is, it’s the perfect punctuation mark for every polite email you’ll ever send. In honor of the ElRey, we’ve put together a list of ten obscure punctuation marks that we’d love to see in print more …Read More