British identity and branding firm Johnson Banks undertook Arkitypo: The Final Alphabet when approached by client Ravensbourne and asked “if we were interested in developing a research project to test and showcase the in-house 3D prototyping skills and technology at their site in Greenwich.”
Johnson Banks’ site explains: “We suggested they do something typographic – just the briefest period of research revealed very few examples of prototyping merged with graphic design. So we set ourselves the brief to develop a 3D alphabet of alphabets. Each letterform is different, each in turn interprets its own alphabet.
“For each letter we carried out extensive research, made drawings, built maquettes and did simple 3D visuals on our machines, before handing the ideas over to Ravensbourne’s team.
“There was a period of ‘virtual proofing’ where we examined the ideas as rendered files, and when all parties were happy, we began the printing (which for some letters took as long as eight hours). Some of the ideas worked straight away, some needed refining. Some fell apart, some were perfect, but after about six months solid work by December last year the ‘alphabet’ was ready for the photography you see here.”
[nod to Fast Company Design]