Monday, October 10, 2011

Breaking Rules

Some of the biggest traditions in typographic design has been played around with and redeveloped for contemporary compositions, such as legibility and readability. Reconstructing these traditions has surely opened up a bigger field for contemporary designs, but which ones have broken these rules successfully for more playful designs, and which ones have just made a mess. This is where evaluation is needed for breaking these traditional features of legibility and readability in typographic designs.

Playing around with positive and negative space is one factor, where when it is played around nicely, can be quite effective in its presentation. For example the one above uses positive and negative space creatively to generate letters without actually presenting its full letterform, and in result is still very legible. However, the example below has used too much of the positive and negative space in its design, making it overall very illegible and hard to read.

Reshaping type to fit together, or to create a certain shape or image is also a very common design in contemporary typography. However, this technique can lead to type being illegible. For example, the image above has successfully transformed the texts to be the shape of a body, but has failed to present the type to legible. If the love heart sign was not part of the composition, it would have been a struggle to read the text. The example below has utilised different fonts, resized the texts, and slightly reshaped, but overall is still very legible and readable.

Legibility and readability in typographic design has evidently been broken and redeveloped in contemporary compositions, but must be performed well to execute a more effective presentation and experience for the audience.

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