One of the highlights at Typography Day was the workshop by Mahendra Patel. He is such an amazing teacher, I can’t help but be jealous of the people he taught typography and type design during their undergraduate studies.

During his workshop, he introduced us to the word ‘Hongusky’ which he uses as a test and a beginning for type design projects. We worked in pairs in his workshop, to create the word ‘Hongusky’ using just white and black paper, a pair of scissors and glue. We weren’t allowed pencils or any kind of doodling. It was all supposed to be spontaneous and we were running with a tight deadline.

This is what Varghese and I made, and ours was selected by the jury as one of the top ten designs. Woohoo!

The moment we put the design up on the soft board, both of us saw so many things that were wrong with it. In all our excitement, we didn’t even manage to get all the letters to be the same height. Plus, the triangular negative spaces in the first half of the word are the lateral inversion of those on the right side. I have no idea how we missed that when we were making it. And, there was so many wonky angles.

Now I’m back home so I figured I’ll try to clean the design up on Illustrator. Here’s what I looks like after some re-thinking,

I like how the ‘ha’ has turned out in this one so much more than the original. Actually, I like all of it better; well, all of it except the ‘sa’.

And, while writing this, it dawned upon me that I could work on this design on Fontstruct, which would make it so much easier. How long it has been since I worked on something there! Its time that this changed.


Comments 8

    • Pooja March 2, 2010

      He talked about how the word has a good combination of simple and complex letters, its constituent letters have vertical, horizontal, diagonal and curved lines so it becomes a good starting point to design 🙂

  1. sheel March 2, 2010

    Hey! looks very interesting.. were you asked to take these specific alphabets in hindi and english or was it open to take up any letters in any of the two languages as per your choice?

    • Pooja March 2, 2010

      He split ‘Hongusky’ into three parts Hon+Gu+Sky. You had to do the first and last part in one script and the middle one in the other. This presented us the challenge of balancing the prominence of two scripts, one which was prominent due to quantity and the second one was prominent because of its location.

      When the jury made their comments, they said that it was important that even with two scripts, it has a coherent word image.

  2. Mahendra Patel March 4, 2010

    Thanks, Pooja, I am pleased that you have shown interest and sense of committment to foolw it further. I am also impreesed by the understanding and comprehension you have reflected in your dialogue. I agree with the feeling that Devanagari “S” needs to be worked upon to bring better legibility, may something can be done for the joint. Regards and best wishes, Mahendra

  3. Pingback: Fontstructing Hongusky | Its a Nerd's Life!

  4. Pingback: Boru: Not a Display Fontstruction! | Its a Nerd's Life!

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