Anagha Narayanan
 

TYPE

Ilai


TYPE

Garnish


TYPE

Sharp Earth Devanagari


POSTER

The National


BRANDING

All Kind Studio


EDITORIAL

Your Highness


BRANDING

Aditi Candles


EDITORIAL

Black Foundry Catalogue [SOON]



Experiments
Information
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ILAI
Role: Typeface Designer
Year: 2018–2020

Typeface Design


CREDITS
Font Production Help: Anurag Gautam
Illustrations: Luca Schenardi
Animation: Paul Sturm
Images: Universal Thirst, Anagha Narayanan


Available through Universal Thirst


Ilai is a modern interpretation of 60s psychedelia. It takes Tamil into new territory, drawing on the psychedelic type styles of the 1960s and 70s and reinterpreting them in a different form. It is inspired from counter-culture visuals, including movie posters and record covers - particularly their use of compressed and experimental lettering. The design can speak in many different voices, from an elegant monoline to a deliciously top- or bottom-heavy weight. It can be clean and simple, or uncompromisingly quirky in its expression. The heavier versions offer a futuristic interpretation of psychedelic shapes, with the letterforms resembling slow-moving fluid or puddles of ink. It’s designed for subheadings, posters, and other display uses, including branding.

Ilai won "Best in Discipline" at the prestigious TDC69 awards in 2023, and was a shortlist at the D&AD 2023 awards. Ilai was released in 2022 with Universal Thirst, a Bangalore & Rejkavik based independent type foundry.





Ilai was a component of my personal project at Universal Thirst, where I was given creative freedom both artistically and in terms of vision. Variability was being considered not just as a linear concept but as one where the letterforms change. The two extremes — top and bottom heavy — were thought of as if a physical force were pushing down on these forms.







Graphic design of the 1960s [when type acted as image] was a huge source of inspiration. Viewing the script as an image allowed for design decisions unrestricted by familiarity with the script. The culmination of learning the script with a flexible brief created a perfect playground.



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