Challenge: Based on the letterpress process, create your own version to execute lyric-based large-scale posters. This exercise should be done with a group of three to five fellow type enthusiasts.
Materials: Pressed foam, cardboard cut into 5 x 5 inches (13 x 13 cm) squares, paint (the more colors the better), foam brushes, large roll of paper or large sheets of paper (any color). You can also use fabric instead of paper for your canvas to create a more permanent piece.
Step 1: Print out the letters of a typeface you love. It should be large and bold. Each letter should fit within a 5 x 5 inch square. Using the letters as your guide, cut out foam versions. Glue these onto cardboard squares backward, as a mirror image. You have now created your own letterpress characters!
Step 2: Choose a few lyrics from a favorite song. Play this song, loudly. Set up your paper, paints, and brushes.
Step 4: After you paint your letter, press firmly onto the paper. Work with friends to create a system for who renders which letters in what color. Plan your composition. Add details with markers or other tools as desired.
Project collaborator: Steven Smith
Lara McCormick is the author of Playing with Type: 50 Graphic Experiments for Exploring the Creative Impact of Typographic Design Principles, due out in March 2013.