Thanking Around


Thanking Around Process: Budapest

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Budapest, oh Budapest. Such a beautiful and cold (very, VERY cold) city. As a brazilian used to a winter with temperatures no lower than 10°C, Budapest really made me wear almost all my winter clothes at once just to go to the supermarket at the corner. Not complaining, because now I get out of home with 15°C wearing just one shirt, an opened coat and calling it summer. Do I miss the 35°C brazilian summer? Not at all.

So let’s talk about architecture. The Hungarian architecture is majestic. When you see the parliament for the first time (and second, third, tenth), you almost listen to a choir of angels on the background and it’s impossible not to say “wow”. It’s a gothic architecture, and it has the same details as almost every other Hungarian building (except for the patterns, we’ll talk about that later). Building in a light color, roof in a dark color (usually dark red, dark green or almost black).

Mr. Majestic during the day

The parliament from a sunny Buda side – yes, it’s huge.

Almost on fire, but with lights. And the Danube river.

This parliament was my first impression of the city (and the building I most loved by far) because we stayed really close to it, and this is why my main color inspiration was this building. But after that, I discovered another typical detail of architecture – geometric details on the roof. You can see them over the beautiful Matthias Church and on the Great Market Hall, below.

Matthias Church

The Great Market Hall

As you can see by the second picture, there’s a diamond-shaped pattern on the roof and on the first floor, and this shape repeats on other buildings around the city, but in a more smooth way. I thought it would be interesting to use it in the background of the lettering. I really love curves and ornaments, but these geometric styles conquered me.

Still talking about the ornaments, I found out that generally they have a lot of small ornaments on almost everything, specially on plates painted by hand (like those below that I found at a small hungarian fair). For the frames on the top and bottom of the postcard, I used those tiny details in black inside the plates.

The whole city is covered by those ornaments so I confess that it was very difficult to land on one option.

About the word itself, what caught my eyes the most was the second most ancient subway line of Europe (losing only for London), that is really small and it has those stylized titles on the drop cap of every station name.

The ornaments around the drop cap are so small, but so beautiful and to me that made all the difference.

With that in mind, I started to search about the main style, that would probably be a thinner serif. Here are some references:

With that in mind, below are a couple of sketches I tried:

In the end the font style chosen was one inspired on the streets’ signs and the one used on the ancient subway. I even added some details line the inner line and the drop shade, because even though Budapest is a city with a lot of gothic architecture, there’s A LOT of younger people taking over the city in a really positive way, and opening those amazing ruin bars (like these ones below). So I think the drop shade and the inner lines could break the classic-gothic appearance of the lettering.

To conclude, I think you could notice that I used the parliament and roofs’ colors that I mentioned before, with a dark background with the goal of being almost as majestic as that parliament. Not that I could get any closer, but we try. Anyways, here’s the final lettering:

If you have any other questions about something I didn’t say here, you can send me an email or reach me on social media!

You can see the entire project here!


Thanking Around Process: Lisbon

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When I first started planning to change my lifestyle and become a digital nomad, the first thing I thought about was to create this project. But as per usual, we tend to doubt that something on this level on amazingness can really happen to us – until it REALLY starts happening. The Lisbon lettering took a while to get ready and I ended up delivering the print to the host 3 weeks after leaving the city. These things happen, specially since we were only there for a week.

But it doesn’t matter how late you are with your personal projects – finish them. ALWAYS FINISH THEM. This is the most important thing, isn’t it? I believe so.

For the reference research, I initially thought of going to the city center and searching for Lisbon pictures on Pinterest. I know that doesn’t make much sense, because the city was all around me, waiting to be used as a reference – so why would I be looking at Pinterest?

As soon as I got to town, the things that called my attention the most were the abundance ornaments (obviously), decorative tiles on everything, and the titles below:

In a way, I knew that the “Cabelleireiro” title represented what I was seeing from the city, but I believe you should never accept the first option without knowing what else is out there, right? Right.

Afterwards, lettering inspirations only made me believe more on what I already had in mind.

n a way, I knew that the “Cabelleireiro” title represented what I was seeing from the city, but I believe you should never accept the first option without knowing what else is out there, right? Right.

Afterwards, lettering inspirations only made me believe more on what I already had in mind.

With the exception of the last two pictures, the others are from the “Cidade Gráfica” exposition, showcasing many amazing works from the XXth century. I don’t believe in coincidences so the feeling of making a bifurcated title was starting to come into shape.

The initial sketch:

(Initially the drawing itself was so poor on information that neither the picture I fixed on Photoshop worked.)

Now it was time to play with ornaments and Lisbon leaves nothing behind when it comes to balcony ornaments and decorative tiles.

Look at these:

I’m not kidding when I say that THAT was the sketch I used in the vector initially, and all the rest was improvised from my last minute research. After this experience I can say with certainty, don’t do that. It’s not healthy. It’s chaotic.

Basically, after defining the title, I tried to put as many ornaments as possible without overdoing it. This is what Lisbon represents to me – curves and ornaments. But as ornaments are secondary, I thought it would be interesting to add two ornament layers, in order to accomplish the Portuguese culture’s feeling and give focus on what really needs attention: words.

Something that I think is very important on the vector process is to avoid using colors when you’re still dealing with the design shape itself – colors can really affect your point of view, not allowing you to focus on what truly matters at that moment.

Below the work in black and white:

Only vector, without Photoshop adjustments.

It’s interesting how testing dark backgrounds can give so much more attention to a white lettering. I tested light backgrounds with the famous white and blue combination – most common in portuguese tiles – but nothing was as shocking as the blue background.

And here is the final art:

I hope this article gave you some inspiration or taught something new. If you’d like to get ask me any questions or talk about something that I may not have mentioned, you can get it touch with me via email or any of the social media links below!

You can see the entire project here!