Going Trypography

If you compare typography vs graphic design vs photography vs illustrations, you will realized that typography is in fact the cheapest way to create good cost cutting, value added design. Here are some things to consider in the world of typography and some additional tricks to trypography.

There are some principles that guide us in this decision-making. It is the focal point. In What typeface, what size, what color should the text be? The hierarchy and dominance, unity and variety, balance and proportion also dictate how effective one uses typography to communicate.

A good visual communicator manages the treatment and placement of elements. An organized type will lead the viewer through the composition and to the message.

TARGET advertisement

Using type as a linear element to guide the viewer’s eye from the large lamp at the right. This makes a clear hierarchy and establishing the size and prominence of the type. Balance determines the visual distribution of the type and how it will appear in relation to other visual elements.

The image on below shows a symmetric arrangement and bottom demonstrates a asymmetrical arrangement to balance positive and negative space. Although type size and format are identical, the visual impact differs.

Varying weights also adds interest to the visual aesthetics. Rhythm and repetition also plays an important role in the success of communicating the visual design. Here’s an example of using repetition to create interest.

Type is also used in formats to suggest the shape of a vase in this poster design. Text type can be formatted to rectangular columns and made to conform to shapes to support a visual’s composition and communicate the message.

Another interesting use of typography is to use texture. A variety of sizes and weights and layering create typographic texture to communicate and promote the visual. The perception of texture is largely controlled by the weight of typefaces and degree of negative spaces, spacing and layering.

To demonstrate how type alone can be scaled, colored, arranged to create a sense of depth and movement in a dynamic composition check out this design by Piet Zwart in 1930. It uses contrast, balance, scale and manipulation of graphics space to create illusion and dictate design elements.

Piet Zwart 1930


Typography in visual communication is very important in the overall concept. May it be a poster, advertisement, TVC or video or a webpage; it is the key element in creating and fusing the message and design together. It makes you focus on what’s important, librating the limitations; breaking barriers.

In trypography, one should try to make your own text and be different. To start this design process, one should get a sense of the flow of the copy into pages and get a sense of how the information is communicated.

Using hand-written copy will produce a feeling of humanity and approach that will represent the message far better than any font. However, this requires a lot of tweaking and can be quite daunting to make changes in analog workflow.

One example I can find is the Otetiana Council annual report which uses handwriting to give an honest message to it’s viewers.

Otetiana Council Annual Report

It’s never easy or simple. There are always problems when using visual puns or multiple typographic images. If one can create a design personality, trypography can be a powerful and inexpensive tool. It will take a detailed eye to create stunning visuals that will communicate yet makes an impression and attention grabbing and engages the viewers. One of the most interesting and memorable brands is the ta-ta breast cancer movement. Definitely a perfect typography solution.

TaTa Breast Cancer Brand

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