What is your process when creating custom lettering or custom type?
Unfortunately thereâ€™s no easy answer here. The process or approach is determined in large part by the client (or brand) and how I feel about the brand (my mood)! If the client is a streetwear brand I automatically think hand lettering so I start pencil to paper! If itâ€™s a client like Harley my mind jumps to hard edges and graphic effects so… I start with a font and see how far I can customize it. Each brand brings itâ€™s individual vibe that I consider and then theirâ€™s my mood. I literally will go against the entire grain and push in a different direction if I feel itâ€™s necessary. I almost think itâ€™s implied (at times) by the client. They want me to look at the brand and then go â€œI feel we should walk off in this stylistic direction!â€ They want me to interpret the brand through my creativity.
As far as tools in the process I stick to the basics BUT I always introduce new tools to play with (recently added some brush pens). The standard tools are a mechanical pencil, a ruler, varios Copic markers, a few microns, the mouse and the Pen Tool. I never use brushes etc.
The majority of the time the process goes like this. Start sketching to get some basic ideas in place. This is the time to â€œfree thinkâ€ with my hand. I just let go and see what happens. The next step is to choose which sketch (or sketches) I like and sharpen them up. This is over a light table and just sharpening the kerning, line weight etc. etc. Once that is complete I scan in. I then use the Pen Tool and re-build each letter (outline or fill, whatever the sketch calls for). After that portion is complete itâ€™s back to â€œfree thinkingâ€ I evaluate the piece and start to add, subtract, distort etc. etc. etc. all in an effort to get to a point where I feel itâ€™s done!
One thing worth noting is that each time I feel a piece of custom lettering or hand lettering etc. is complete I will duplicate the piece and re-hash it! Itâ€™s almost a game to me to see how far I can take the piece in a different direction from the original while still staying as solid as the first. Itâ€™s just another opportunity to explore really!Tags: cool lettering, custom lettering, custom letters, custom type, custom typography, Graffiti, hand lettering, hand letters, hand type, Jared Mirabile, lettering, Osiris Shoes, Sweyda, typography