Think Helvetica's a boring typeface? Check out the inventive uses these creatives have put it to, and you may think again!
Helvetica, the typeface so iconic that they even made a movie about it, is often accused of being a boring and obvious choice. But it doesn't have to be that way. Here we present 10 examples of creatives who have taken the iconic sans-serif typeface and done something very different with it...
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The designers of promotional material for the Mikser Festival 2012 used the concept of printing mistakes to create this very original take on the Helvetica typeface. Through a very systematic and mechanical process of editing they produced this 'photocopy that went wrong' idea concept, which was then implemented in a number of diverse ways to create a range of promotional products is beautifully done.
This powerful typographical statement, created by Turkish designer Caglayan Aktug, symbolise the passion many designers feel towards the 'perfection' of the Helvetica typeface. On his Behance site, the image switches between the above and a distorted image of the man's face. Aktug's point is that to distort a typeface and reduce its legibility is as bad as distorting the image of a human being.
Here's another brilliant and original way in which Helvetica has been used in an unconventional way to create beautiful work. Johannes Klein-Reesink took her typewriter apart and arranged it back together in the style of Helvetica Neue Bold, creating a whole A-Z of incredible, inventive lettering.
For a student project, Rachel Katstaller and Eduardo Love were asked to create type with material they had never used. We could use anything we wanted. Lovo had the idea of creating Helvetica with fire and renaming it 'Hellvetica'. This amazing creation was produced with a camera and a lighter, burned fingers and a lot of patience. Although it doesnt quite achieve the perfect arches of the original letter forms it's a fabulously inventive idea, beautifully executed.
05. Dress Helvetica
Giulia De Amicis is an Italian based designer who wanted to celebrate and bring a new light and perspective to Helvetica by using clothing, fabric and everyday objects to build a whole, usable typeface. The use of vibrant colours and diverse pattern and complexity work really well here, recreating the perfect structure of the original typeface.
This awesome illustration produced by the talented French art director and graphic designer Paykhan slips in a sly reference to the typeface's Swiss origins.
This project by German designer Stephanie Wiehle cleverly combines the complex and subtle beauty of paper art with the simplicity of Helvetica to create an enchanting narrative. Wiehle's design was made with paper in different colours fixed with ultra-strong glue.
08. Glyphs only
A typeface isn't just about the letters A-Z. For this small and humorous spin using the Helvetica typeface, Polish creative Aleksandra Szwalko looked at the elements of Helvetica typeface that are less obviously recognisable. She played around with just these glyphs to interpret the term 'Type Faces' in a literal way.
Delhi-based designer and illustrator Disha Roy wanted to demonstrate her love for Helvetica throughout mainstream design. She aimed to add personality to the letter forms in keeping with visual rules and atheistic of the typeface. The result was a uniquely beautiful and vibrant collection of letter forms.
Dutch designer Rosa de Jong has created a tasty alphabet that's perfect for the typographically inclined chocolate lover. The subtle and delicate attention to detail here pays tribute to the much-loved Helvetica typeface.
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Have you seen an unusual use of Helvetica? Let us know in the comments box below!