Using Adobe Photoshop, we learned how to create a displacement map, which is something that is used as a background image when distorting another image. The displacement map is an arrangement of waves that can alter the image in the foreground by combining the image. By using the displacement map and the previous helvetica distortions, we were taught how to distort the typeface even further for the final helvetica poster. In this lesson, we were also introduced to different ways we could distort the image using the liquify tool in photoshop, which could also be used in our final project later on.
Helvetica Poster Project Inspiration Board
Letterform Typographic Portrait
The typographic portraits are portraits that consist of only letters and in only one font. Each portrait is made with a different font, and you can clearly see that each of them, although they are the same photo, express a different mood, personality and appearance from the original photo.
Helvetica Typographic Portrait
I created this typographic portrait of myself using the Helvetica font. Out of the three portraits that I have created I think that this was the least interesting one to make because the letters seem quite 'normal' without a serif or another type of effect. They look very block-like, and they make the image look very structured and tense, in a way. Because the letterforms are quite thick and look very digital, the portrait looks a bit closed off and makes the photo look very unkind. I did not really like using the Helvetica font to create the portrait because it did not express a light, cheerful mood that I was aiming for.
Serif Typographic Portrait
For this portrait, I used a font that had serifs, and it gives the original photo a very different appearance than the Helvetica portrait. The use of the serif font makes the image look more formal, and I think that it gives it a bit more personality. The face looks more open and kinder, and the font adds a more cheerful expression to it in contrast to the more blank look of the portrait using Helvetica.
Typographic Portrait (Using Font of Choice)
The third portrait uses the font 'Gloss and Bloom', which has more of a handwritten, brush stroke type of effect. I liked using the font because it gives the original image a very flowing effect and, because of the curviness and creativity of the letters, it was very easy to make the hair. The letterforms in this font are ideal for creating a portrait because there are many soft shapes and curvy letters to use. Overall, the font gave the image a softer and more flowing look and, because it is hand-written, the font makes the image look more lively and interesting.
Transferring the Typographic Portrait onto Lino-prints
While we developed our typographic portraits a lot digitally using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, we also laser-cut the images and printed them out on a lino-print so that we could print them onto paper manually with paint. During the lesson, we used paint and rollers to evenly spread the paint out onto the lino, and then tried to evenly print the paint onto a piece of paper using a spoon and other tools to transfer the paint. The most challenging thing about this activity was to use the correct amount of paint on the lino so that the paper would not tear while transferring the paint onto the paper, and also transferring it evenly to create the clearest image possible. On some of the prints that I made, I did not use enough paint on the lino, which caused the surface of the paper to tear off because it stuck together. Some of the prints also have white edges and spaces between the black paint, which means that the paint was not evenly transferred onto the paper. The last print was the most successful because it has the greatest contrast between white and black and looks the most clear.