Monday, September 30, 2013

Of cultures and alphabets

It’s my most recent interest lately, visual identity of languages, aka their alphabet. I’ve been randomly practicing my calligraphy for the Arabic, Hebrew and Birmanian and other south Asian alphabets, just because they had such a great calligraphy to them. It was part of the exercise, making my mind try to recover what are the characteristic behaviors of the Arabic alphabet, for instance, and what makes it so unique and beautiful to me.

In the last month I’ve been really interested in engaging in an advanced creation for my world, and so I’ve taken this interest in the calligraphy and the rhythm of letters and writings there. But before I can actually pull a tolkenian trick like making actual new idioms, I’d better focus on this simple identity of the flow of the lines. I am curious about the visual aspect of a new alphabet.

As an advanced part of this exercise, I’m glad to see I’m still pursuing the case of cultural creation I’ve settled for myself at the beginning of the year. That is, I’m getting familiar to the known cultural identities, and I’m already trying to see what comes to my sketches that might be independent from their initial inspiration. You see, quite like dioramas, in a way.

So far my alphabetic sketches are just small variations, but I think this is a ground that still has a lot for me to explore, and that will give me the roots I need for the new cultural identities I long to create.

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