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  • Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli: the rebranding

    Following the change of the University’s name from Seconda Università di Napoli (SUN) to Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, the Institution has decided to launch an international call for ideas to produce the graphic design of the mark and/or logotype and related visual identity system

    The call was created with the support, assistance, consultancy and patronage of Aiap - Italian Association of Visual Communication Design.

    The University was established in 1991 within a diffuse regional context, and since the very beginning it has been entirely autonomous from the other, older Universities for its history, culture, nature and organisation. 

    "More than twenty years later, the University can still boast the same levels of autonomy, a widely acknowledged reputation, and the ability to be a reference point in the region both in terms of courses offered and of its consolidated diffuse nature. Thanks to its relatively recent history and its inborn aptitude for innovation the University has become known as a competitive academic institution at the regional, national and international levels, enhancing the internal resources of excellence and setting up a repositioning strategic plan which may bring to light and value the results achieved over the years" says the University. "The reasons behind the decision to go through a rebranding process lie in the strong will to highlight the University’s modern, highly dynamic nature". 

    A small example of what the creatives have to offer is Milleunomiglia studio proposed identity.  “We decided to take part in the contest because it was an opportunity to demonstrate our skills as a design collective publicly” says the studio to It's Nice That explaining that the University's "poly-centric structure, characterised by the union of the three poles of knowledge (humanistic, scientific, polytechnic) and intentions to communicate itself as an inclusive, innovative, international and open institution" was an inspiration for the ultra dynamic and adaptable typeface.

    03Nov
  • Celebrating Cruz Novillo’s timeless Spanish graphic design revolution

    Cruz Novillo: Logos” provides a comprehensive guide to an important
facet of Pepe Cruz Novillo’s output, his logo design. The book from Counter-Print celebrates the work of Spain’s prolific graphic designer. Pepe Cruz Novillo, the graphic designer behind identities for Spain’s post office, police force and Socialist Party was born in 1936 and was a cartoonist, artist and sculptor before specialising in corporate identities. He went on to create logos and icons for art galleries, construction companies, schools, festivals, banks, laboratories and the Spanish Socialist Party as well as designing Peseta notes.

     “His work is now so ubiquitous, it has become part of the fabric of visual culture in [Spain],” says Counter-Print. “The influence of his use of geometric shapes, simple, strong line-work and a playful, illustrative aesthetic can be seen in the work of many contemporary designers and has helped in keeping his legacy alive” writes in the book’s introduction, Counter-Print’s Jon Dowling on the timeless aesthetic of Novillo’s work and his lasting influence on graphic design.

    “His studio Cruz más Cruz, that he now co-directs with his son Pepe Cruz Jnr … still garners praise and recognition globally…. Simultaneously, a new generation of designers are falling in love with the historical output of Cruz Novillo’s work and are beginning to appreciate its significance and importance to the visual landscape of Spain,” he writes.

    The book contains over 300 pages of logo designs. It also includes a Q&A with Novillo.

    “I strive to have a powerful semantic idea, I try to draw it in the best possible way … then I review it so that it acquires a pragmatic quality” says Novillo in this inspiring monograph.

    Get your own copy here.

    01Nov
  • Can you help Barry Spencer’s cryptic Clara typeface find its clarity?

    Legibilitator (yes, this is a word of fiction), speculator and doctor, Barry Spencer likes challenges - after all his is a speculative type designer who often makes letters that may or may not look like letters.Based in Melbourne, Australia, Spencer -currently a university lecturer and freelance designer- has thoroughly researched, explored and played with the Latin letterforms throughout his career. This task of his has allowed Spencer to reach a point where he has fundamentally altered the way that he creates, perceives and understands the shapes of the alphabet.

    Looking through Spencer’s portfolio we are welcome to follow the many visual avenues that he has taken over time with some leading to further exploration, some inducing confusion and some purely undertaken just for fun. Clara, his latest typographic challenge is pure joy. 

    Clara began life as a challenge from Spencer’s former student Riley McDonald to create something typographic for his magazine “PRJKTR” based in Geelong, Victoria. “With the issue revolving around ‘SIN’, I decided to create shapes that pushed my ‘sin’ of letterform speculation to a new level” says Spencer. 

    Utilising grid 17 from his own #100daysofspontaneous project, Spencer tried to compose shapes that elevated the obscurity of some of his typefaces and added an element of cryptography to them. He then put together a cryptic artwork using the letters for people to try and decipher -after all Clara is in search of “clarity”.

    This typeface of his goes “against the natural order of things” by twisting and pushing the constraints of the Latin alphabet. Looking to engage with the audience and challenge them further, Spencer provides subtle clues within the text that hinted at how he created the letter. So the question is, are you ready to decode this typographic challenge? Let Barry Spencer guide you though in the text below:

    "Within this text lies the key to decoding my cryptic artwork. A few subtle clues are riddled throughout the information, so attention to detail is important for decrypting the letterforms.The first person to decode the type and tell me how I created the letterforms will be rewarded. Good luck!

    The Natural Order…

    Clara is a typeface that is specifically designed to be challenging and against the natural order of things. However, from experience I know that it’s considered a great sin to sever the ties to the existing Latin alphabet in this way, even when born from twisted typographical fun and entertainment.

    Letterforms like these are prime to invite adverse reactions from those prone to more traditional perspectives of type design because making shapes that are intentionally hard (or near impossible) for people to read adds another level of abstraction onto the already abstract Latin forms that we have become familiar with in our daily lives. Essentially, this makes them lose their purpose — communication. However, what if this was the intention from the start? Does that re-imbue the shapes with an assigned purpose? The challenge of decipherment.

    See Artwork 1

    Divided Time…

    In my work I enjoy the challenge of pushing my perception and understanding of letterforms. I constantly to advance my knowledge (and appreciation) for the potential of letters every day, in each and every project I create. However, I did not arrive at this approach overnight.

    My letterforms started out as small experimental deviations away from the existing shapes and these small changes led to larger and more experimental trials, before finally moving into far removed speculations that explore what might happen if we follow more extreme and unusual ideas.

    This led to the completion my doctoral thesis “Speculatype” in 2014 and I have spent the years since divided time between a mixture of three things: creating, writing and teaching (with public speaking and workshops thrown in for good measure).

    See Artwork 2

    Out of Our Comfort Zone…

    My argument revolves around our ability as designers and creatives to explore our professions and outcomes more than what we might think possible. Creatively, we have the ability to question the status quo and the existing understanding of what we do and make.

    Asking, “what if I did it this way instead of this way?” is a simple question that leads us to try new things and allows us to potentially innovate. Removing ourselves from the comfort of doing things the same way as everyone else (which might be considered another “sin”), challenges us in new and interesting ways.

    See Artwork 3

    Because We Can…"

     

    31Oct
  • Urban activism at it's best: Manuel Kreuzer’s poster tribute to Passau

    Manuel Kreuzer, a graphic designer from Passau, Germany shares the same passion like we do. Type.
    Bringing his love for graphic design into the streets of his hometown, Kreuzer introduced his “Passau Posters” project on September, 2016. The design rules were as simple as they should.
    “I designed one poster per week for an event that I chose and provided the poster in print resolution on the website www.passau-posters.de for free” he says of his inspiring urban activism.“The posters were designed exclusively in black and white besides included only fonts”.
    The project gave him scope for exploring creative boundaries between visibility and legibility. On the other hand, Kreuzer wanted to prove how effective writing and typography can be - without picture or color - in the poster form he adores.

    Ever since the launch of his idea Kreuzer has created 52 posters. The project came to an end on August 2017 and since then Kreuzer’s introduction to Passau make his hometown a place to visit asap.
    Enter his version of Passau through Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/passauposters/) or Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/passau.posters/).

     

    27Oct
  • Village Voice: an ode to the iconic weekly gem with Google’s archive

    “Without it, if you are a New Yorker of a certain age, chances are you would have never found your first apartment” reports the New York Times on The Village Voice, the left-leaning independent weekly New York City newspaper which has announced that it will end print publication.

    According to the paper’s owner, Peter D. Barbey, the move was intended to revitalize the 62-year-old Voice by concentrating on other forms, and to reach its audience more than once a week.

    Founded by Dan Wolf, Ed Fancher, and Norman Mailer in 1955, the Village Voice introduced free-form, high-spirited, and passionate journalism into the public discourse. As the nation’s first alternative newsweekly, the Voice today carries on the same tradition of no-holds-barred reporting and criticism it embraced when it began publishing 60 years ago.

    The recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes, the National Press Foundation Award, and the George Polk Award, the Voice remains a vigilant investigative watchdog and a go-to source for coverage of New York’s vast cultural landscape. The Voice’s unique mix of in-depth newswriting and reporting, incisive arts, culture, music, dance, film, and theater reviews, and comprehensive entertainment listings provides readers with an indispensable perspective on the inner workings of the world’s most vibrant city.

    The Voice website, www.villagevoice.com , has twice been recognized as one of the nation’s premier online venues for quality journalism and local content. The site is a past winner of both the National Press Foundation’s Online Journalism Award and the Editor & Publisher EPPY Award for Best Overall U.S. Weekly Newspaper Online.

    “The most powerful thing about The Voice wasn’t that it was printed on newsprint or that it came out every week,” Barbey said in a statement. “It was that The Village Voice was alive, and that it changed in step with and reflected the times and the ever-evolving world around it. I want the Village Voice brand to represent that for a new generation of people — and for generations to come.”

    “The alt-weekly’s purpose was, in theory, speaking truth to power and the ability to be irreverent, and print the word ‘fuck’ while doing so’” wrote editor and writer Camille Dodero. With strong visual language, typography and illustration – after all it is a product made by and for New Yorkers - Village Voice’s mission has been accomplished too many times over.

    Enter Google’s Village Voice archive, featuring 1,000 scanned issues going all the back to 1955 and lose yourself into the iconic publication before it’s leap of faith towards the digital realm, here.

     

    24Oct