Dude, where’s my bike? (a short lesson in 3D lettering)

February 25, 2007 at 12:15 am 1 comment

Got this shot from the snow this week.

Bikes in the snow
It’s quite fun on the picture of a bike in the snow, but imagine that as a 3D effect on text and you’ll see it’s not good for your lettering. Just like you won’t find your bike here, you’ll have a hard time reading the text.

Why – because it becomes hard to read. 3D effects on lettering decrease the contrast, so if you put too much on your piece the text and the art blend together.

On the post I did a few days ago on the Stencil Graffiti in Copenhagen by Dolk you see what high contrast means. Event on a colorful or random background, the lettering and art is clear.

There are still too many people that think modern means using modern tools (i.e. lots of 3D lettering because the new Photoshop software can make 3D lettering). Don’t fall into that trap.

Here is an example how it should not be done:
How not to put 3D effects on your lettering
What’s wrong?
– Bad font choice
– 3D effect overdone this looses all contrast
– Too much shadow and too strong
– Serif fonts don’t do well with any 3D effects
– No color choice

Here is an example of the same and how it can be done:
A better way to use 3D effect on lettering
what’s right?
– Sans-serif font
– 3D effect subdued
– Shadow just enough to give effect
– Font choice better
– Colors used to focus attention

The Dolk signature is a good font choice and good contast.
Dolk’s signature - Good example of high contrast and lettering

Hope this helps, comment if you have questions.

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Entry filed under: 3d effect, dolk, dolk lungren, font usage, lettering usage, tagging, typeface, typeface usage, webdesign.

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