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36 Days of Type: Looking Back

Several months have passed since I completed the 36 Days of Type challenge, and today I took a look back at my work. It’s interesting to see the stylistic and thematic choices I made, while remembering the frantic rush of trying to create something every day.

From a quality perspective, there are a few letters that turned out quite well (if I do say so myself). Below are my two absolute favorites:

The two letters are similar, expressing a sophistication through the deliberate curves and emphasized terminals, and displaying confidence with their wide, chunky stems. Limiting the palette to just black and white helps create this stylish feeling, similar to a high-end fashion brand or retailer.

Some of my other letters however, were not as successful. In fact there are a few that I am ashamed to have ever shown to the public! But ultimately this was a challenge to myself, to see if I could make time to produce something that was solely for me, every single day. And from that perspective, it was a success, even if the results were not always aesthetically pleasing.

As a professional in the creative industry, it’s often challenging to find time for personal projects. But in my opinion, finding that time is essential to sustained success. Being able to let your creative juices flow, without restraints or deadlines or quantifiable goals, keeps your mind fresh and your sanity intact. This will raise the quality of the work you output, and increase your efficiency. Sounds like a win-win to me.

36 Days of Type: Completed!

Confession: I have a love/hate relationship with social media and what it’s become these days. One thing it is fantastic for is following other creatives you admire and respect, and seeing what’s happening within the community at large. I’ve always been fascinated with the amazing personal projects and side work I see people doing, but I always think to myself- “who the hell has time do all this great stuff, and still get any work done?”

Several months back I decided to challenge myself to create something every day that was just for me, not paid client work. While studying lettering and looking at inspiration, I stumbled upon 36 days of Type– an open curation project, where each day people create a single letter and post it with the hashtag, #36daysoftype. The creators sort through all of the submissions each day, and post their favorites to their instagram feed.

Within a few days of discovering 36Days, they announced the 3rd installment would be starting soon. So without any planning or foresight, I decided to join in on the fun and see where it would take me.

Disclaimer: Some of these were done in very little time (less than 30 minutes), so the quality of the designs may be lacking…

Day 1: A
Day 2: B is for bacon, didn’t you know?
Day 7: G
Day 21: U, similar style to the J
Day 25: Y made with new brush pens

Woot! With only 10 days left for the numbers, I’ve been thinking about a music theme for the numbers. Next time around maybe I’ll do a #36DaysOfMusic theme for the whole damn thing.

Day 27: 0
Lyric: Just telling everyone I give 0 fucks about Coachella. #36DaysOfMusic
Day 28: 1
Artist: Eminem
Song: Lose Yourself
Lyric: You better never let it go, you only get one shot. #36DaysOfMusic
Day 29: 2
Artist: The Doors
Song: Love me two times
Lyric: Love me two times girl #36DaysOfMusic
Day 30: 3
Artist: Bob Marley
Song: Three Little Birds
Lyric: Three little birds, pitch by my doorstep #36DaysOfMusic
Day 31: 4
Artist: Neil Young
Song: 4 Dead in Ohio
Lyric: 4 Dead in Ohio #36DaysOfMusic
Day 32: 5
Artist: Phish
Song: 555
Lyric: 555 #36DaysOfMusic
Day 33: 6
Artist: The Lovin’ Spoonful
Song: Six O’Clock
Lyric: Up and down on the hands of the clock, Six o’clock, six o’clock #36DaysOfMusic
Day 34: 7
Artist: Phish
Song: Seven Below
Lyric: Seen several kinds, through seven below. #36DaysOfMusic
Day 35: 8
Artist: The Beatles
Song: Eight Days a Week
Lyric: I ain’t got nothing but love, babe, eight days a week. #36DaysOfMusic
Day 36: 9
Artist: The Clovers
Song: Love Potion No. 9
Lyric: Selling little bottles of love potion number nine. #36DaysOfMusic

Wow, that was crazy fun! If they do another one, I’d like to stick with one conceptually style, as I think that would be an even greater challenge, and make for a much more cohesive and well designed set of letters.

You can view all the letters I've created so far on my instagram account, and make sure to check out the entire project here to see some truly stunning work.