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Basically I‘m a big fan of blackletter typefaces, … read more
Basically I‘m a big fan of blackletter typefaces, so it was quite obvious that I wanted to design one by myself. The lag of many gothic fonts is, that they fit well as a headline font, but not for bodytext. I decided, to design a font, that suits the characteristics of handwritten blackletters as well as some characteristics of antiqua letters and therefore is also usable for bodytext in print publications. The antiqua characteristics get more obvious the smaller the font-size or the distance of the reader to the text is. In relation to other modern blackletter typefaces, the Lektura is heavily based on calligraphic writing techniques and not that much on geometric patterns nor too antiqua-like factors.
How would you characterize your style?
For me, the concept is a part of the design, that can be styled, such as an graphical artwork. Even the best style can‘t cover a weak idea. Based on that conclusion, my style relates to the basic principle of „form follows function“. At least most of the time. That principle leads into a mostly straight and reduced design approach. It is important, that all the small pieces of a design fit together perfectly. While the last years I was also into film and generative design, so therefore I can‘t say, that I got one unique style like e.g. an illustrator. There are too many influences and different design tasks I am working in and they are so different, that it is nice to develope a bunch of different styles paralelly. For every single design product and each medium I try to develope a distinctive style and workflow.
How did you come up with the name of the font?
Because of the origin of blackletter typefaces in calligraphy of scripts, that were written by ancient monks, I was searching for a name, that represents the artistic work of this era. Monks wrote encyclopedia by hand and developed a distinctive style, that lasts centuries. I decided, that „lexicon“ would be a perfect meaning and dedication to those men. But it sounded inappropriate for the old times and so I searched some dictionaries. The polish word for lexicon is „Lektura“. A kind of a latin-like spelling and pronounciation fit that purpose.
What inspires you?
I‘m not massively browsing design blogs nor similar websites. Reading books, that match with the current work, helps me a lot more. That not necessary need to be a book about design – a novel sometimes inspired more because of emerging images in my mind. Many of my inspiration comes up, when I‘m having a break, am on my way home, doing sports or just relax. It is more the conceptual inspiration, that then visits my mind. I think, a good design need it‘s time to develope and lots of rethinking. And inspiration is something, that can be supported, but not forced. It‘s important to look at the daily grind, for example album covers, well made images and architecture, where I can study patterns and basic principles of a solidly build design. This is maybe a overused term, but in daily routine you can analyze, why it works or not, and that‘s the inspiration you learn from and develope your own workflow and principles of doing things.
Which is the bigger challenge: working on your own personal project or for a client with a strict briefing?
I think it depends on what job you got offered. If it is challanging, the work for a client can be as satisfying as a personal one. The only difference is, that personal projects are totally controlled by myself, so that I can do what I think is appropreate and of course it have to reach financial success. Finally the inner satisfaction is everytime much bigger, when other people appreciate what you are doing.
Do you have a working routine? What are your ideal conditions for you to work in?
My ideal condition is a tidy place with nothing more than a good sound, some books and a laptop. It is essential, to have a space, that‘s seperated from the rooms, where you are eating, living and sleeping. Sometimes, a kitchen can be inspiring and motivating as well, but not that often. And for me it is really useful, when other busy people share a working space with me – it acts like a catalyst.
What is the ideal usage of your font?
I think it best suits the needs of headlines as well as signets and packaging purposes. In smaller sizes it works appropriate for copytext. I tried it also on a photomontage on the oldstyle-signs of the Berlin subway and it works pretty well – so maybe the Berlin subway need some new signs.
How would you describe the state your handwriting is in?
If you mean my calligraphic skills, I think they are on an intermediate level. They need to be trained from time to time to produce nice letterings. My „normal“ handwriting looks a bit like a sketch: not bad, but more rough than perfectionist.
Where does the font end, where does the image begin? Is there a line to draw?
Definitely, but it‘s a floating border: the font ends, where a glyphs outline merge with the background, where a glyph cannot definitely be identified as a letter anymore or a glyph becomes that illustrated, that it‘s more a piece of art than craft.
Your future plans/projects?
Currently I am working on my Bachelorthesis and later from spring to summer on a functioning prototype. In the spare time I try to do some freelance jobs and create some new material for my music project. Further I‘m editing some new project showcases for my portfolio, which were created 2011.