Discussion Response 6 – Reflections

Looking back on this unit, I have enjoyed the variety of subjects covered, but I wish I had had more time to spend on the activities. Of the weekly topics, my favourite was data visualisation, and I am glad that I chose this topic for my final essay as I still found it interesting even after reading a bunch of texts on it! I would have liked the opportunity to create more of my own visualisations, and have plans to do so over the upcoming break. This topic could almost be its own unit and I hope that it comes up again later in my degree.

I also enjoyed the week we spent on Michel Gondry and film. This is a medium which I know little about and it was interesting to read about it and watch the videos. Also, when the set reading is a movie, it’s a welcome relief!

I appreciated the two tasks which focussed on the final essay, the first which got me to start my reading early and the second which got me to see that I had more reading to do! I find academic reading a hard task to stick to, so it was great to have those reminders along the way so I wasn’t stuck reading when I was supposed to be up to the writing part.

The continued use of referencing was a pain to begin with, but now I feel quite confident with the APA style.

As someone who is completely new to Design, this was a great introduction to the different kinds of works available to design professionals, and it gave me hope that I, someone who is truly not gifted with artistic ability, will be able find my special niche in this world.

Thanks for an interesting unit Anna, and thanks for your excellent turnaround times for marking and always helpful feedback!



Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Finalising Submission

I have taken a few days away from this project to clear my head, but after doing another review of it this morning, I’m pretty happy with where it’s at. Time to print out another rough version to double and triple check everything, and then I’ll send it off to be printed.

I have contacted the printer I used last trimester for another subject, but they have quoted me $40 for the job, so I might have to use Officeworks, which is only $20. Or there’s an option to use a printer near Swinburne, that means I’d also be saving on postage, but I think I’d like to see it before it gets sent off.

Below is a smaller JPG version, and I’ve also uploaded a PDF version.


Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Draft Analysis


This is my favourite version so far. I finally feel like it’s coming together.

I have changed the heading line to be a little less prominent, and have changed some of the images. I think including a portrait of Wim Crouwel brings more life to his section, and the addition of lines help separate the sections from each other. I have changed the image used in the phototypesetting section, as I realised that the previous image I was using was more suited to the 1950s technology than the 1960s. This new image shows the Digiset machine, which I talk about in the text in that section. The large image of the a shows how letters are created using the bitmap format.

I have also added captions to the images, which I think is a big improvement. Otherwise you won’t know what you’re looking at!

I feel like the layout and the spacing of the elements is hugely improved compared to my first version where there wasn’t any whitespace at all. But at the same time, I think there could be even more.

Things to try:

  • Changing the headings so they stand out more… maybe a different colour or typeface?
  • Changing the quote so it stands out more

Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – First Drafts

It was quite a challenge, but I have (finally) come up with a handful of first drafts for my A1 information panel on typography in the 1960s. This exercise has revealed how little I know about InDesign, layouts and grids! I had no idea how many columns to make my grid, and so I wasted a lot of time fiddling around.

I have chosen the font Sitka for my poster, it’s a pretty neutral serif typeface which I don’t think looks too heavy on the page. I have gone with 20pt for my body text, which seems HUGE! I printed the first draft to get an idea of how big things were, and the font is really quite large… but I suppose it’s large enough to read if you’re standing in front of the panel without having to get too close. Is it too big? I have no idea.

Not all the drafts have a space to put a reference section and I’m not entirely sure if that needs to be included, so if it does, I’ll need to ensure I can fit it on there.

Draft 1


Draft 2


Draft 3


Draft 4


Draft 5


Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Content Proposal

Decade Allocated – 1960s

Topics Chosen

  1. Wim Crouwel
  2. Phototypesetting
  3. New Alphabet





References (APA)

Bigman, A. (2016). Digital Fonts: A condensed history. Retrieved from https://99designs.com.au/blog/creative-inspiration/history-of-digital-fonts/

Dutch Profiles. (2012). Dutch Profiles: Wim Crouwel [Video file]. Retrieved from https://vimeo.com/54351371

Iconofgraphics. (n.d.). Wim Crouwel. Retrieved from http://www.iconofgraphics.com/wim-crouwel/

Glancey, J. (2011). Wim Crouwel’s extraordinary alphabets. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2011/apr/07/wim-crouwel-design-museum-typography

Loxley, S. (2011). Type: the secret history of letters. London: Tauris.

MoMA. (n.d.). Wim Crouwel. New Alphabet. 1967. Retrieved from https://www.moma.org/collection/works/139322

Novin, G. (2011). A History of Graphic Design. Retrieved from http://guity-novin.blogspot.com.au/2011/07/chapter-42-swiss-grade-style-and-dutch.html

TypographyGuru. (2016). Phototypesetting with the Berthold ‹diatype› [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76qwCF6ThLs

Image References

Vormgevers, 1968, poster, 95x64cm, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

Edgar Fernhout, 1963, poster, Van Abbemuseum Eindhoven

Raysse, 1965, poster, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

Morris Louis, 1965, poster, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

Beelden in het heden, 1960, poster, 95x64cm, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

New Alphabet


Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Phototypesetting

For my “the development of typesetting or typographic technology from the period” portion of Assessment 4, I will be covering  phototypesetting.

Phototypesetting is a method of setting type, and it’s now obsolete thanks to the humble computer.

The way it works seems pretty complicated. A black disk is created and each character is cut out of it. This disk is placed into a phototypesetting machine. Light is projected onto the disk one character at a time, and the image is captured on photo-sensitive paper. A thousand captures or so later, and you have a page of type. The paper is developed and then can be used to create a mold that’s used for printing.

Image source: http://www.tipografos.net/tecnologias/phototypesetting.gif

This technology was created in the late 1940s, but in the 1960s it was digitised. Digital phototypesetting machines, like the Digitype machine created by Dr. Ing. Rudolf Hell, used cathode ray tubes instead of physical disks. This allowed the typesetter to check and edit their work before the final capture (yay for fixing typos), and also when floppy disks were invented later on, their work could be saved and stored for later.

Image source: https://maeddesigns.files.wordpress.com/2017/09/47e3a-12142712_951570288259648_1976523959_n.jpg

Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Wim Crouwel

For my “profile of a designer, design group, studio or movement, or an influential or significant typographic design work from the period” portion of Assessment 4 I have chosen the Dutch design Willem (Wim) Crouwel.

Willem Hendrick Crouwel was born in 1928 in Groningen, Netherlands. In early adulthood, he first studied Fine Arts, and was then drafted into the army. On his return, he began working as an abstract painter. In 1952, he studied Typography at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, and in 1954 he quit painting and began working as a freelance designer.

In 1963, Wim Crouwel helped to found Total Design (now called Total Identity), the first multidisciplinary design studio in the Netherlands.

Crouwel worked extensively with the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, creating many posters, catalogues and exhibitions for the Museum. It was through his work with Stedelijk that he was able to develop and refine the application of the grid system, for which he is especially well known. My profile on Wim Crouwel will focus on his work and contribution to the grid system.

Crouwel designed the typeface New Alphabet in 1967, a unique looking typeface which includes only horizontal and vertical strokes, as early phototypesetting equipment could not replicate curves. The New Alphabet typeface was designed so that the letters were equal width and so they fit into his grid system both horizontally and vertically.

Another one of his typefaces is Gridnik.

Wim Crouwel has also contributed to the education of future designers, teaching at various design academies and universities over the years.

The work of Wim Crouwel has been exhibited all over the world and he has won a number of European design awards. The Design Museum in London and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam featured his work in a major exhibition called “Wim Crouwel: A Graphic Odyssey” in 2011.

Vormgevers by Wim Crouwel (1968)


Discussion Response 5 – Letter Arguing For Funds


Dear Grants Officer,

I am writing to you on behalf of SELCO India, with the hope that you will consider our organisation for your financial aid program for the 2017-2018 financial year.

SELCO India was established in 1995 to provide energy solutions to under-served and un-served areas of rural India. Our flagship product is the Solar Home Lighting System, a wireless solar power system which can be used by families in rural areas to fuel electrical appliances and lights.

More than one third of India’s population live off the electricity grid and an equal number suffer from frequent power cuts due to poor electrical service. The Solar Home Lighting System allows electricity to be gathered during the day, and then used by night to allow families to pursue income generating activities and also allows children to study and read after dark. These families currently survive on kerosene fuelled lamps, which are hazardous to their health and the environment. Kerosene is also 325 times more expensive for the same level and quality of light that can be provided by a standard incandescent bulb fuelled by a Solar Home Lighting System.

Our products are purchased by farmers and families on a payment plan, where the customer places a 15% deposit and is then required to pay the balance over three to five years. Many of our customers experience an increase to their income and to their children’s literacy and education levels due to the improved electricity service in their homes.

We are in need of financial partners to allow us to continue the production and distribution of the valuable Solar Home Lighting System. Through generous donations and partnerships with government agencies, private companies and financial institutions, our product has bettered the lives of 100,000 households in Karnataka, and it is our goal by 2023 to extend our services to neighbouring states Maharashtra, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu. Your financial aid would help us and the rural communities of India immensely.

For more information about the Solar Home Lighting System, please visit our website http://www.selco-india.com. I can be contacted through the below details for any further information or documentation.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Jane Doe
Chief Technology Officer


Design for the Other 90%. (n.d.). Solar Home Lighting System. Retrieved from http://archive.cooperhewitt.org/other90/other90.cooperhewitt.org/Design/solar-home-lighting-system.html

SELCO Solar India (2008). SELCO Solar India. Retrieved from http://www.selco-india.com.



Assessment 4 – 20th Century Type – Fonts of the 1960s

For Assessment 4 we have to create content on three topics – the design of a typeface or type family from the period, the development of typesetting or typographic technology from the period, and either a profile of a designer, design group, studio or movement, or an influential or significant typographic design work from the period.

Let’s start with the easier one – typefaces of the 1960s. I have used the book Typography, referenced : a comprehensive visual guide to the language, history, and practice of typography by Tselentis et al (2012) to identify some fonts, and also this Wikipedia page.

Aurora (1960)

Ad Lib (1961)
Antique Olive (1962)
Eurostile (1962)
Forte (1962)
Compacta (1963)

Friz Quadrata (1965)
Impact (1965)
Rail Alphabet (1965)
New Alphabet (1967)

Sabon (1967)

Syntax (1968)
Bauhaus (1969)

This webpage also seems like it will be a useful reference – https://fontsinuse.com/tags/301/1960s.

I think that Eurostile and Bauhaus are probably the most commonly known fonts out of the above collection, but I really like the look of Fitz Quadrata. It’s been used in video games and science fiction-y things, and I think I will enjoy learning more about it.