TYPO London 2012: Social provided a unique
opportunity to investigate the myriad ways in which designers can function socially. There is no single path; there are many. But we can be sure of one thing: the socially minded designer is the designer best equipped to deal with the changes that we all face as a culture. Close to 900 attendants followed the presentations of more than thirty international speakers in a unique atmosphere of inspired curiosity. The Conference presented a relaxed atmosphere that encouraged the speakers, students and professionals to be â€˜Socialâ€™ and network. I am sharing ten insightful quotes from the Designers, Typographers and Educators who shared not only their experiences but also their humanity. Lisa Whitaker
Paula Scher is a ‘social’ designer in the best sense of the word – her work is literally on the streets and in the buildings where people live, work and study. A Pentagram partner since 1991, Scher is a giant of contemporary graphic design. Her most recent work includes the bold new identity for Microsoft; designed to coincide with the recent launched Windows 8. What I thought: Great to listen to a Female Designer who was part of another era of Graphic Design in the 70’s and who has been evolving and achieving throughout her career
# 01 / 10
All design is social. We design for people. We work with people. We effect the culture. The thing I try really hard to do, which is what we all want to do as designers, is not to save the world but try to raise the expectation of what design can be.
Designer Tim Beard together with Jonathon Jeffrey and Mason Wells founded BibliothĂ¨que in 2003. An independent design studio based in London that has earned an international reputation as an innovative company working in the fields of brand identity, spatial and digital design. Recent collaborations include developing the Signage and Environmental Graphics for The Google Web Lab at The London Science Museum. What I thought: Tim Beard presented with sincerity and authority. BibliothĂ¨que is a -forward looking Design Studio with an emphasis on Social both as part of the Creative process in their studio and collaborations and with their clients. # 02 / 10
The BibliothĂ¨que approach is a Social Studio. An open plan office without walls and boundaries and a no headphones policy. The work surrounds us which penetrates our thinking and stimulates discussion and questions; ideas bed in and develop. Everyone gets to air their views, regardless of their position. So, its no surprise that the studio is filled with dialogue and discussion.
Simon Manchipp is the Executive Creative Director and Co-Founder of SomeOne, the progressive London based and internationally operating design practise, Simon launches and relaunches brands worldwide. SomeOne have been behind recent re brands for The Royal Opera House, Eurostar and the National Maritime Museum. They developed the â€˜Compare the Meerkatâ€™ Branding which made Compare the Market.com the market leader. What I thought: He came across very pleased with himself, like a Design Director version of Simon Cowell; however behind the mad Cat gifs presentation he did speak a lot of sense and kept the audience entertained, if a bit distracted. # 03 / 10
Clients need to understand that weird works; itâ€™s what is remembered. No-one remembers the colour of the carpet.
Patrick Cox is an Independent Creative Director with over 25 yearsâ€™ experience and has worked with the worldâ€™s leading brands Patrick lives in London and works with organisations and individuals facing complex design and innovation challenges. Formerly Executive Creative Director of Wolff Olins he worked on projects including London 2012, Macmillan Cancer Support and (Red) He is currently helping Eight Inc (the design company behind the Apple Stores) set up shop in London. What I thought: A quiet unassuming, extremely earnest man. Spoke like an academic with authority and a lot of sense about his work, society and design in general. eightinc.com # 04 / 10
Brands need to become more socially engaged with an ever smarter population. As designers and makers we constantly need to be looking to create more useful, productive and fluid relationships; and keep a strong ambition to move these smart people and our society in a wonderful way.
Matthew Butterick is a typographer, lawyer, and writer in Los Angeles. And he has been making demands on design and designers since his first appearance at the Fuse 95 conference. After graduating from Harvard, he worked as type designer for David Berlow and Matthew Carter. He started a web-design studio, Atomic Vision, that was acquired by open-source developer Red Hat. Butterick then got a law degree from UCLA. He is the author of Typography for Lawyers. His most recent fonts are FB Alix and Equity. What I thought: The presence and charisma of a Hollywood actor but with a brain and a passion for society and typography # 05 / 10
Solving problems is the lowest form of design; investing your humanity is the highest.
Rick Banks is a designer, art director and typographer, working under the moniker Face37. In his short career since graduating in 2006 he has worked at SEA Design and This is Real Art. At this is Real Art he worked on the branding for the Musicians Union and the D&AD copy book about advertising and published by Taschen. He worked with Marty Brown from IDEO, where he redesigned the packaging identity of the coffee brand Douwe Egberts His most recent typeface design is Bella What I thought: Great to see a young lad of 26 from my hometown Bolton so successful, driven and inspiring. face37.com thisisrealart.com # 06 / 10
Work hard. Try to be nice to people and do everything and more, that is asked of me
Sara De Bondt is a London-based, Belgian graphic designer and she is also publisher and editor of Occasional Papers, a non-profit publisher of affordable books on the history of architecture, art, design, film and literature. Making knowledge available and affordable to all has become one of her central issues since starting Sara De Bondt studio in 2003. The studioâ€™s approach is research and idea driven, with strong emphasis on visual clarity and typographic detailing. Recent Projects have included Radical Nature for The Barbican and The Office of National Statistics for Artissima. What I thought: A presentation delivered sincerely and thoughtfully for a woman with great vision (No pun intended!) saradebondt.com # 07 / 10
* Fill typefaces with patterns rather than full colour to save ink
In 1994 Gerry Leonidas found a home in the Department of Typography at the University of Reading, where he teaches typography and typeface design, and is heavily involved in knowledge transfer projects. Since 2001 he has been running the MA Typeface Design programme. He has been contributing to Greek typeface design projects for over fifteen years, working with most of the designers and foundries that matter. His perspective is one of placing typography in a wider context, and helping develop in designers an understanding of the basic principles, and an insight into the potential for originality. What I thought: A warm generous man, obviously popular with his students who were at Typo to support him, eager to share his knowledge. He certainly inspired me to understand Typography with more depth. leonidas.org # 08/ 10
Donâ€™t rely too much on the form of things especially in design but try to ask yourself a different question. Ask why are things the way they are; where are they going and how are you going to move forward from this.
Kirsty Carter & Emma Thomas set up A Practice For Everyday Life whilst at students at RCA. Recent projects include the exhibition design and publication of â€œBauhaus: Art as Lifeâ€œ at Barbican Art Gallery and a new visual identity for Witte de With Centre for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam. Working on everything from brand identity, print to signage, wayfinding and exhibition design, Kirsty and Emma enjoy investigating, exploring, collecting and experimenting to arrive at outcomes that surprise, delight and engage on many levels. Currently they are working on the graphic identity of a new cross-disciplinary arts space in Hong Kong and the design of a major new retrospective publication for the artist Linder. What I thought: Unfortunately I had to miss their talk for Gerry Leondis however after looking at their websites I have watched the video of their presentation . Their work is incredible and the talented Arthur Carey, a graduate from LCA is going to Intern for them very soon # 09/ 10
Ultimately as designers what we are interested in is people who are making some kind of social commentary in the way that they work or striving for an impact that way As designers we are translators, observationists, inquisitors, and we are always trying to learn something new. Our work is with, out of and for people that is something we really value about our work..... its social aspect.
# 10 / 10
The final words from the Charismatic Matthew Butterick
We often overlook how consequential it has been; working with the written word is a Noble and significant tradition