Friday, April 18, 2008

Type Club Review Part 2: Ian Brignell

On Wednesday, the Type Club of Toronto presented Ian Brignell, a lettering artist and designer. If you haven't already heard of Ian you have surely seen his work, likely on a daily basis. From Burger King to Smirnoff to Estée Lauder, Ian has worked on everything.

After listening to his presentation I took away from it that he wasn't just a talented artist but an exceptional communicator, everything was clearly explained using case studies, personal references, showing his tools and an overall ease through his presentation. Like many of the other speakers before, he is meticulous with details (I see a trend) which is what really brings his work to that level of quality and makes him a master of his craft.

A lot of his work involved taking an older wordmark and updating it or softening it without losing its history, I do wish he had shown before shots to compare.

During all presentations at the type club there are always the typical type obsessed little comments and questions. During Ian's, it was about whether the curves were drawn by hand or computer rendered. I know designers and type aficionados are insanely obsessed with the details and technicalities (and I am not one to talk) but I wonder if the overall concepts and sheer beauty is lost on us when we get that obsessed, or does it only make our work better? Any thoughts?

The most important point Ian made all night was to rough out your work fast and in multiples to get the initial gesture and energy because you can't try and inject some energy later, it won't work.

Here are a few samples of Ian's work (all samples from his website):


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