Phase 4: Week 13

The exploration of characteristics continued during this week, I began looking at Jenson and deconstructing relevant characterstics. I printed a piece from “De evangelica praeparatione” the first book Jenson printed with his Roman.

I printed the source and traced some of the letters from my list of characteristics.

Characteristics Jenson:

Capitals to ascender height

D H N S  – Wide

M – Serifs on the inside of stems

M – Top serifs

Q – Long tail

a f – Top terminals

b d p q  – Tilted bowls

e – Small eye and extending oblique bar

f – Extended arch

h – Non-uncial form

i j – Small dot offset to right 

y – Straight tail

And put them back in the computer. The reason for this process is basicially that I wanted an analog feel to them, they were not supposed to be perfect letterforms but rather deconstructed abstract objects.

I printed them again, and started cutting them up with a scissor and then scanned them back in.

These experiments looked at a quite literal deconstruction. The aim was to see if the microtypographic characterstics could be enhanced and still be presented as a letter.

I chose some that I liked and worked a bit more on them, looking at possible texture and how they could be used.

I tried to contextualise these fragments from the letterforms a bit, but that was not at all what I am going for. The deconstructed letters seem too apparent, I want the material to allow the audience to reflect a bit by themselves, to let the material be less literal. I let this go for a bit and went back to working on the structure of the bundle. This is an overview of the formats and their intended use (some notes in Swedish).

Since I have started exploring possibilities with folding and found some formats I just went with that. I am open for later revisions or the project taking another form or direction. But for now I will explore this further.

I mocked up my format sequence in the computer, this is just for me to have easy access to the formats so that I can get a quick overview if I need it.

Applying structure

I have most of my formats figured out, I need an overarching structure for them. I want modular grids across all applications and therefore I have wanted to create a grid from the Fibbonacci scale (1,1,2,3,5,8,13..) that would overlap with the golden ratio structure of my formats. My intention is to use the Fibonnachi grid and those measurements as foundation for constructing modular grids across the material of the bundle.

This is a simple and organic way to work out a grid according to the Fibonacci:

From the overarching fibonachi grid I extracted a square and from that square I created a modular grid that aligned with the format. Usually I align my modular grids with my intended hierarchy of typography, but I wanted to try out this more intuitive way, since my formats are so centered in this project.

I extracted the smaller square for one of the smaller formats and constructed a modular grid from that. This basically means that besides the format sequence there is also a sequence of modular grids based off the Fibonacchi scale. I can possibly base my typographic hierarchy of that scale as well.


I feel like at this stage in the process, it is necessary for me to explore whatever part of design I feel like. I restrain myself a lot from the premises of what I think is expected of me. I am trying not to and just go for what I think is suitable for me and the project at the moment. The deconstructed letters did not lead to anything and that can be ok. The result from those experiments let me know that I want to let the audience draw their own conclusions. That is something that I will have to remind myself of, because in the bundle there will be a written essay with necessary information. That means that I can allow the rest of the bundle to emphasize and extend that research without being too literal and leave some ends open for interpretation.