On Randomness and Typography

Print publication & poster for my 2016 thesis at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design.

“Random” is not a word often used to describe the work of a graphic designer. Strategically calculated visual solutions drive much of contemporary design, but occasionally, a degree of randomness emerges through the layers of controlled design decisions. In my thesis paper, I investigate various effects randomness has on typography in the context of graphic design. Randomness, or chance, requires the designer to cede control over the type.

Through processes of chance, the form or layout of the type changes, according to its own rules. Yet, the designer makes crucial selections: which randomizing process is used, which resulting visual becomes part of the overall design, and how is it incorporated? This brings up an intriguing power play between randomness and control. Within this balancing act of giving up or maintaining control, surprising and exciting design solutions emerge.