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Next Stop Mars

Contributed by Alex Darbyshire on Jan 4th, 2021. Artwork published in
November 2020
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    Next Stop Mars 1
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    If humanity intends to survive the next million years, our only hope is to become a multi-planetary civilisation––at least that’s what many are arguing. This publication explores the need to colonise Mars and questions the potential scarifies it will demand of humanity.

    The (fictional) publication is designed for adventurous individuals excited by the unknown. The audience is deeply invested in the future of humanity, far beyond their own lifespans. They embrace new technology, being excited by the prospects its presents, but also recognise its potential dangers.

    Next Stop Mars takes inspiration from the principles of the modernist movement, The New Typography, in combination with contemporary typefaces – explained in detail in the image captions.

    Next Stop Mars 2
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.
    The humanist axis of  Variable is influenced by hand-scripted type forms, as was the style during the Renaissance era. The essence of this publication is humanity, not space and modern technology, so a typeface with humanist references acts as a subtle reminder that having the technology to get to Mars is only one small element in the successful migration to Mars. A diverse family with multiple weights, including small-caps and text figures was required.
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    The humanist axis of Minion Variable is influenced by hand-scripted type forms, as was the style during the Renaissance era. The essence of this publication is humanity, not space and modern technology, so a typeface with humanist references acts as a subtle reminder that having the technology to get to Mars is only one small element in the successful migration to Mars. A diverse family with multiple weights, including small-caps and text figures was required.

    Reckless Neue is a contemporary display serif with Renaissance influences. The letters were inspired by Plantin, Times New Roman and Caslon, with a humanist axis, open counters and an elevated x-height. This results in a legible typeface that can be adapted to a variety of scales. The abrupt, unserifed terminals and contrasting stroke widths add personality and a contemporary appearance, despite the old-style influences. The type family assimilates well with Minion while providing a contemporary aesthetic.
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    Reckless Neue is a contemporary display serif with Renaissance influences. The letters were inspired by Plantin, Times New Roman and Caslon, with a humanist axis, open counters and an elevated x-height. This results in a legible typeface that can be adapted to a variety of scales. The abrupt, unserifed terminals and contrasting stroke widths add personality and a contemporary appearance, despite the old-style influences. The type family assimilates well with Minion while providing a contemporary aesthetic.

    The similarity between Minion Variable and Reckless Neue required a third addition that was boldly different to maximise contrast in the publication. Something that could add weight to the page, given the fine strokes of the previous two was also necessary. Sharp Grotesk is a variable, humanist sans-serif. Its breadth of weights and widths provides the opportunity to create type with towering x-heights or elongated type widths. Its pointed ink traps in the capitals add personality and increase legibility when used on a smaller scale. It is with Sharp Grotesk that there was the greatest opportunity to be expressive and flexible with the type.
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    The similarity between Minion Variable and Reckless Neue required a third addition that was boldly different to maximise contrast in the publication. Something that could add weight to the page, given the fine strokes of the previous two was also necessary. Sharp Grotesk is a variable, humanist sans-serif. Its breadth of weights and widths provides the opportunity to create type with towering x-heights or elongated type widths. Its pointed ink traps in the capitals add personality and increase legibility when used on a smaller scale. It is with Sharp Grotesk that there was the greatest opportunity to be expressive and flexible with the type.

    Next Stop Mars 6
    Source: https://www.alexdarbyshiredesign.com License: All Rights Reserved.
    Next Stop Mars 7
    Photo: Alex Darbyshire. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Typefaces

    • Sharp Grotesk
    • Reckless Neue
    • Minion

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