THE NON-DESIGNER'S TYPE BOOK
2. Most Amazing Trend:
Special Effects Type
The first time I saw a designer stretching and squeezing type on a com¬
puter monitor, I knew my graphic Ufe was going to change, but little did I
know what magical changes they would be.
Some of the things you can do with type today aren't new. Dazzling effects
were being created before desktop publishing, but mainly by those lucky
enough to have giant budgets and lengthy production schedules. Most of
us flipped through the design annuals of yesteryear and wondered how this
was done or what genius did that? Who has that much time or budget?
Fortunately, there was a digital daybreak on the horizon emblazoned with
the motto: New Ballgame, Amigo!
Tired of flat type just lying there, staring at you? With software and
software plug-ins available today you can transform your headline into a
piece of art, or at least an eye-
stopping dynamic graphic. You
can render a word or a sentence
in 3D, rotate it, render it in
color, and specify what direc¬
tion the light is coming from
and what color the light is.
Change the color of the ambi¬
ent light and map a texture to
the surface of the type. Bevel jwry /A\
the edge of the type. Create a ^^&¿'-^*/L,*m
soft drop-shadow that blends—^^Y\f^Cl\ dl
into the background color.
Twirl, zig, zag, ripple, shatter,
or vector warp your type. Shade
the inside of the type with
blends of color. You can do all
this at your desktop in less time
than it used to take you to find the phone number of some master hand-
The software tools for creating special effects are getting more powerful,
more affordable, and easier to use, so this is a trend that is just becoming a
way of life. The only designers jumping off this bandwagon are ones who
are looking for the next big whatever. The next time one of these tech¬
niques jumps off the page at you, say hello to a trend.
TRENDS IN TYPE
3. Most Beautiful Trend: Rendered Type
I've separated this category from the previous one because this one is really
a combination of illustration and typography. These are the kinds of typo¬
graphic examples that really used to seem out of reach. How often were you
going to hire photographers, illustrators, and retouch specialists just so you
could have a snazzy looking headline? Forget it, Junior Art Director. . . use
Garamond Bold and color it bright red. But now it's everywhere. It's every¬
where because it's easy!
Type that's partially blended into a photograph or embossed onto a texture.
Photomontages rendered on top of a headline. How about textures and
effects that look photographic but were created from scratch on the com¬
puter, or patterns that have never even been created before? If you really
want to dazzle 'em, this one's for you.