Activating Creativity Using Typography with Designer Ian Lynam
Written in Japanese by Izumi Tanaka
Translated and Edited by the SCBWI Japan Editorial Team
On May 8, 2015, designer Ian Lynam presented a workshop on typography entitled "A Little Bit of Type Goes a Long Way" for SCBWI Japan at the Tokyo Women's Plaza. The event was divided into two parts: the first half was a lecture on the history of American (and European) graphic design, and the second half was a hands-on workshop on typography using Letraset. Though I am an illustrator, I never really thought about text design as part of storytelling, so it was very interesting for me.
The first thing Ian did during the workshop was pass out various photographs of both interior and exterior designs created by Zaha Hadid. We each took a photograph, tracing paper, and white paper. Next, he asked us to lay the tracing paper over the photograph and to write numbers 1 to10 based on visual hierarchy. He said, "Just put number 1 over the item that catches your eye first. Make sure the number is big. Then put number 2 over the next item. Keep going. Make sure as you go higher in number, the smaller the text becomes." Then we laid the tracing paper over the white paper, and using several dozen sets of Letraset Ian brought, we started to create designs using letters. For an illustrator like me, I never thought that letters and words themselves could be designs, and that you can place them acccording to visual hierarchy. So many light bulbs went off in my head! This was such a discovery for me. Thank you, Ian!