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Welcome to rachelsays... The blog of Rachel Lewis, containing my thoughts and musings on illustration, design, fashion, music, cakey-bakey goodness, culture and things that I generally find cool. There's also a good chance my own illustration work will pop up on here.

All work on this blog is copyright to me unless I state that it isn't. Obviously. Don't do stealing, kids.

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Sunday, February 07, 2010

New Work: 'I Fear The Distraction' Art & Fear Submission

This piece of work was created last week specifically for a submission for Underground Art School's Magazine. Issue 5's theme is Art & Fear and they wanted a focus on hand-drawn typography for this issue. "The two topics seem to go hand in hand. Create, draw, or design us your favorite quotes, lyrics, and positive affirmations that inspire you to move past the fear toward creativity. What are your creative fears? What worries you?"

This is an entirely hand-rendered piece, nothing done in Photoshop except tweak the contrast a bit. It is all rendered in HB and 4B pencil, with a hand drawn version of Adobe Caslon Pro, including ligatures.

I've just discovered ligatures and what they're actually for. I thought they were just typographic decoration. Designers showing off. Not so. "Ligatures usually replace consecutive characters sharing common components and are part of a more general class of glyphs called "contextual forms" where the specific shape of a letter depends on context such as surrounding letters or proximity to the end of a line." So there. And of course, the ampersand is a ligature; of et. Now everything in the world makes sense. There are all sorts of rules too, here's an article that looks at 18th Century ligatures, for all you history people.

Being that I never had any formal typography learnin's during Uni, I didn't know any of this. I am intrigued.

The quote is something I made up, addressing the worries that a lot of freelance artists/designers have when starting up; I need a 'real job' to tide me over before I start making a lot of money from what I do, but I don't want this job to take up so much of my time that I can't create/design when I want to. It's a common thing. I feel it a lot. It's easy to say, oh just do your illustration in the evening/night, but I don't want to do the thing I love at night. It's draining and tiring and above all, I want to spend my working time working on things that I love doing, not in a shop. Etc. The intended slight illegibility of the piece is supposed to evoke the frustration that this situation causes.

The whole idea was inspired by an interview I read in the current issue of Grafik magazine, with Project Projects, where they discuss a similar thing.

I'd quite like to turn it into a screenprint eventually. That'd look ace I reckon. Just need to get near to a screenprinting bed. I can't believe I lost my uni ID - can't use the facilities now :( Major lame.

I hope it makes it into the Issue anyway, I'm pleased with how it turned out; it was a labour of love and took a while, but I love doing hand drawn type and it was a departure from a lot of my work.

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