Audio from Typo-Outlines


Gestern auf der Konferenz der Association Typographique Internationale in der Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw: Type-Designer Just van Rossum (FF Beowolf, ITC Officina, FF Justlefthand) zeigt, wie sich die Formen von Lettern anhören, wenn man auf den Koordinaten in den PostScript-Daten in Wellenlängen konvertiert. Ich finde dazu nicht mehr, als die zwei kurzen Videos, die haben mich aber schonmal völlig angefixt. Wenn da mehr kommt, sag ich Bescheid.

There are many parallels between sound and letters, music and typography. While interesting, these are often based on subjective perception and therefore remain rather vague. This talk documents a serious, yet playful exploration of shape analysis and transformation based on signal processing, inspired by trigonometry, analog synthesizers, Lissajous and Fourier (but not Fournier!).

Imagine we take the cold hard numbers that define shapes digitally, and pretend they are sound waves. What do letters then sound like? What does an ‘E’ sound like? Can we hear the difference between Gotham and Garamond? What can we learn from looking at the harmonics of letterforms? But things become less abstract once we do the reverse: reconstructing shapes out of sound waves. What happens when we apply audio effects to letterforms? Can we meaningfully modify shapes via that route?