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workshops, Detroit 04 2003, daily

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american-stencils background info

daily impression/final result
the publication

day 1 : day 2 : day 3 : day 4 : day 5 : day 6 : day 7 : final result

Revisions galore! After compiling another round of revisions, the students gathered around all the characters to decide what forms must be grouped and unified. For example, all the bottom left sides of the characters must be flat (the angles were all over the board). C,G,O, and zero must have the same curvature. All top left serif must align and correspond to the main axis of the typeface. The list was long . . . much work was done to refine. The students then broke off into smaller groups to work on refining like forms. During this phase the students were also thinking about the final application and name of the typeface. Names that surfaced as possibilities were Neat Meat, Stencizzle, Meat Shop, Polygamy, Quite ok, and Chopshop. Chopshop was the one chosen so that is the name of the typeface. The students felt that Chopshop reflected the process, the nature, and the environment in which it was created in. Next the final application had to be decided. Students discussed that the application should reference the process, reinterpretation of interpretations and interpretations of reinterpretations (and so forth). Ideas in regard to the form were T-shirts and salvage clothes (to be silkscreened), an installation at a local cultural center, stenciling messages around the city, and less permanent vandalism such as spraying on grass, dirt, etc. Moral issues with vandalism surfaced and we decided as a group that government would not be pleased with spraying the city with the new baby Chopshop. Ultimately, the students decided to cut the type out of wood large format - approx 8" x 10" for each letter - and take photos of the city through the cut type. Off to the woodshop we go.

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8 comments so far: read comments , please do comment
bas -- Friday, April 11 2003, 03:45 pm
you fontographer lovers, I still have the feeling that this stencil typeface is not so much stencil like, and quite hard to stencil. I think forms like the capital T are much more 'stencil like' than 'V', 'D', 'N' or 'R'(!). ps. Don't forget about the 'S'.

dirk uhlenbrock -- Friday, April 11 2003, 04:09 pm
hi - love the "K". the "M" is a bit to weird, the "stairway- look" doesn't fit very well.

sami -- Friday, April 11 2003, 04:23 pm
Man, what a besserwisser that Bas is... yes, you're right, the letters needs the chopping much more, and at the moment we are just doing it. In the early stage we decided to first tune the basic elements; bows, arms, straight lines and so on - to see what are really the places that needs cutting on first place. So yes, now many counter forms still were extremely complex (A, B, R...). Wait for the picture from tomorrow (day 06), the students are really going for it.

chester -- Friday, April 11 2003, 08:39 pm
I concur with Bas, that the stencil "functionality" should be more than just a matter of blocking strokes at the final stage. Since you set out to make a stencil font, those construction details whould have been design details. _ You have created a truly beautiful typeface, and I'd love to see it as a non-stencil version as well. (And I'd love to see the stencil version have "stencil funtionality" that is as sexy as the letterforms. _ Best, c

sami -- Friday, April 11 2003, 10:59 pm
Chester, thanks for the critics. I agree; the concrete application should define how the elements are behaving, that should define how the type looks. But, during the workshop things change quite rapidly finally today (Friday) we agreed on the way how to apply font. It may have been better to decide this earlier, but it was also hard to come up with a concrete plan. So now we are in the practical stage: the group just cut the word 'CHOPSHOP' out of wood and we saw the difficulty of craftmanship...:)

bas -- Saturday, April 12 2003, 12:50 am
Also think about the spacing in between two letters. The space which is in between the two different seperated forms of the 'T', should be equal to the space in between two 'T's next to each other. Now they look extremely close to eachother.

bas -- Saturday, April 12 2003, 12:52 am
Oh yeah, I am too late with my comments probably, everybody is already struggling around with the 3d material. Time, time, time, you could need another week....

ed -- Wednesday, April 16 2003, 04:25 pm
What can i say about this workshop? I'm not expert like you are. But i guess dealing with font means dealing with words. And words need meaning. Why dont you cooperate for demonstration purposes with people that deal with speech?

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