This week, I am focusing on two things: International Typographic Style & Psychedelic. The former is an impactful movement that shaped Visual Communication heavily in terms of organisation of information. The latter is a movement that I’m focusing on purely based on aesthetics and the message behind it which intrigued me.
International Typographic Style
- Traces back to Neue Grafik - aka Swiss Style - Emerged in Russia, Netherlands & Germany - Further developed by designers in Switzerland - Emphasis on readability & objectivity to communicate ideas effectively Characteristics: - Usage of grids & Sans-serif typefaces - Style is associated with preference for photography instead of illustrations/drawings as a primary design in addition to text
The emphasis on clarity for this movement paved the way for universally understood way of communication through visuals. It creates a sense of order and control in my opinion. This allowed room to play more with the graphic element be it photography or illustrations etc since the texts are more structured using compositional grids. It is also laid out better to create a better eye flow that is natural so that the message comes across more clearly.
- Art, Graphic or Visual Displays related to/ influenced by Psychedelic experiences & hallucinations form psychoactive drugs - Visual Arts were a counterpart to psychedelic music - Evident in concert photos & record album covers - Generated controversy due to its links to illicit substance Characteristics: - Kaleidoscope swirling/spiral patterns - Strong colour palette - Concentric circles & repetition of motifs & symbols (eg. Paisley) - Art Nouveau & Victorian influences
It also had an influence on comic book artists who created undergroudn genre of comic book known as “underground comix“. They were often satirical in nature.
I think this movement stood out to me visually due to its association with Art Nouveau influences, which in my reflections before, I did highlight my interest in. The contrasting colours were refreshing to see and although jarring at times, it somehow created harmony as colours were carefully curated to complement one another and placed with thought. In this art form, in my opinion, the text came secondary to the image shown. I believe this is due to the fact that since they were attracting controversy, through this manner, they were still able to attract their targeted audience and those who were interested in the scene. It created almost a, “camoflouge” for them to continue existing and to spread their movement/style/message.