Group Font sees 37 very different creatives contribute a letter
Benedikt Luft, Sophy Hollington and Fisk are just some of the great names behind this global typographic project by Raissa Pardini raising money for WHO.
- Jenny Brewer
- 12 May 2020
“Usually fonts are made of letters that follow a certain style,” begins Raissa Pardini of her mega typographic project, released today, but Group Font is different. This new rule-breaking typeface is purposely irregular, as each letter and number has been crafted by a different creative – such as Aaron Lowell Denton, Benedikt Luft, Sophy Hollington, Fisk Projects, Gabriel Alcala and Nam Huynh – in keeping with their own unique aesthetic, to “bring the diversity of each designer,” Pardini says. In fact there are two versions of every letter of the alphabet, adding even further room for eclectism.
Pardini, a designer who has contributed two letterforms to the set herself, and an activist, was looking for an outlet for her anxieties around the coronavirus emergency and, importantly, a way to help. “I wanted to find a way to use visuals in a positive way during these tricky times, and do something worthwhile.” With a plan to make “the craziest font ever seen!” Pardini started contacting lots of her favourite creatives from around the world to ask if they'd take part. “Design can be powerful, but even more powerful if it's done together as a group,” she adds.
The brief was open, asking everyone to “use their own style and do their own thing,” with one caveat that the design was not inspired by the virus in name or style, to keep things positive. “We did have to start from somewhere so I gave everyone some guidelines in size, colour and a mood board which was purely aesthetic and neutral. It could have ended up looking really bad! But each letter is so different yet totally together. We gambled by breaking font rules but the result, honestly, makes me so so proud.”
There are illustrators, graphic designers, typographers, product designers and artists involved (full list below), each bringing “their own world” to their character contribution. “Some letters are more beautifully illustrated while others are technically impeccable,” Pardini says. However, designs are remaining anonymous so for now you'll have to guess who designed which (until they start popping up on their Instagrams).
There were challenges along the way, of course, but everyone was happy to help, she says, and “quick to make adjustments to keep the whole font in line. It's been an amazing reality check on how strong the creative community can be on a global level and how much we can do together”.
Group Font is out today with 100% of profits donated to the World Health Organisation.
The full list of designers is: Aaron Lowell Denton, Alec Tear, Barbara Malagoli, Ben Tipton, Benedikt Luft, Bijan Berahimi, Brandon Nickerson, Combrisi, Connor Mikita, David Strother, Dnorsen Design, Dominic Kesterton, Ethan Fender, Félicité Landrivon, Gabriel Alcala, Gabinete Exquisito, Gregory Page, Jackie Rivera, Jake Farmer, Jess Ebsworth, Mathery, Nam Huynh, Parco Studio, Polytype, Raissa Pardini, Renato Flores, Robbie Simon, Ruan Van Vliet, Sam Sheridan, Simen Royseland, Sophy Hollington, Stephen Rossi, Studio Sofa, Wedge Studios, Tamara Arkatova, Tiernan Crilley and Tim Presley. Plus web design help from FORM Digital.
About the Author
After five years as It’s Nice That’s news editor, Jenny became online editor in June 2021, overseeing the website’s daily editorial output.
Jenny is currently on maternity leave.