When I was a kid, I had this crappy play table, with a light blue leatherette top and animal decals on the side. I spent hours drawing at that table, going through reams of cheap newsprint. Even on a sunny weekend day, I’d be at that table drawing. My mom was good enough not to toss me outside with the old parent refrain “Get outside and get some fresh air!”.
When I got older, I was sure I’d become a pilot, but that seemed a bit lofty (pun intended). I never connected drawing to an actual career. It was something I did for fun. Growing up, it was suggested I become an architect. Listening to this year after year, I accepted it. Then I found out you actually had to know math, and physics and all that stuff. Then it wasn’t so fun anymore. I sucked at those things. It was in my later high school years that I discovered this thing called “Commercial Art”.
Lettering is a happy collision of both graphic design and illustration. There’s a part that’s familiar, but a lot of it’s new and forces me outside my comfort zone. It lets me use my decades of experience with design, sketching and typography but in a new way. The process is quite different from graphic design. While I give myself boundaries, it opens up more opportunities for expression.
I love that lettering merges old-school, analog techniques and computer technologies. Over the years, my analog tools made their way into storage boxes. Now, they’re coming out into the light again. I didn’t realize how much I missed them.