Today, we are joined by Jolien Brands , she is a Graphic Designer. You can view her portfolio here.

  • What was the first typeface you fell in love with?

The first typeface I fell in love with was Didot. I love the way the font is classic and timeless at the same time. It was the first font I started experimenting with. I like the contrast between a contemporary design and a classic font and that is why I started using it.I still love it, by the way.

  • What are some of your proudest projects ever?

The first project that I’m really proud of is my mapping font Frag mental. I love how it brings light and motion together and how it gives a totally different dimension to a simple and clean typography. I really wanted to create a moving type and lightning is one of my biggest inspirations.

I’m also very proud on a new recent project I just finished. It is a font that fully reacts to music. It contains out of glass spheres that are connected together with a thin thread. The motion in the font blows life into the whole thing.

Absurd Humanity is my latest project that I like very much. I got inspired by weird diseases and how absurd forms can take over our bodies. I made a photography series about these illnesses and I tried to make something beautiful out of what people consider ugly disorders.

  • What do you think of Apple and their approach to design in general? How does their industrial and web design compare to typeface design?

You got to love Apple. If it wasn’t for them, we still would be stuck on a slow computer that didn’t support our beloved programs. I can’t go a day without my Mac-book Pro, so I am really grateful for the materials that they offer us.

  • Can you briefly describe what the current process is like for you to create a new typeface and where do you get your inspiration from?

I get my inspiration out of the daily life. I got my inspiration for my last font by bumping into pictures of a women with the disease “Elephantiasis”. I always start by sketching forms that eventually become letters. I sketch the whole font and then I start using my digital software. Sometimes I use 3D-software like Cinema4D and sometimes I work with the program Font lab to create my typefaces.

  • Where are some of the areas where typography is improving and where do we need to see more growth?

Newspapers and magazines are improving. I really saw an evolution over the last few years typography-wise. The typography became clearer and they really put more thought into their designs in general. I think we still need more improvement on the web and on mobile apps. Some of them really are going into the right direction, but there are still so many sites out there with some very bad typography. I have a habit of clicking them away very fast J.

  • Taking into account small sizes, aliasing and browser font rendering engines, which fonts do you think should be used for body text on the web?

Something that looks good, but mostly is clear and kerned well. Readability is one of the most important factors.

  • What’s the most overrated font in the world?

Arial. The font really isn’t designed well, but everybody knows it and it is one of the most popular fonts in the world, which is a shame.

  • Let’s talk a little about the creative process and how you work. Can you describe your ideal work environment?

My ideal work environment is a clean, but cozy space. I can’t work when there is stuff lying around on my desk, it needs to be organized so I can clear my head. It also has to be cozy, I can’t work in a cold environment. My workspace is black and white, organized, with a few candles and a cozy chair.

My ideas mostly come at night, so I start in the morning usually by making quick sketches and notes. I always start by doing manual sketches and drawings, because the ideas come quicker that way. Than I figure out what medium I want to use, but I mostly end up on my computer. I scan my sketches or I start completely over in my software.

  • Which typefaces’ styles do you think will be the most popular in the near future and why?

Clean and forward. We don’t have time to waste, we are people that want to go forward as fast as possible. So I think that the typefaces should be clean, kerned well, so that we can read fast and easy. The average human won’t take the time to figure out complex typography, because he will flip the page or click it away in less than a second.

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