Inspired by Letters

Planning a wedding has opened me up to so many new things in so many different areas. While I expected to learn about wedding etiquette, dress styles and fabrics, invitation wording…you know, the stereotypical wedding stuff, what surprises me the most is how much I learned about graphic design and print. Well, maybe not learned, but was exposed to…I still feel like I know nothing about it but at least have seen some of what is out there…and now I am starving for more.

Since the wedding, it seems I can’t get enough of anything artistic…whether it’s print, photography, even dance (I was a dance major for my undergrad). Maybe it’s because I know hardly anything about it, or maybe it’s from studying a bit of calligraphy to get ready for the wedding, but I’ve been somewhat infatuated with graphic design for the past couple weeks…letterforms and typography in particular. Even for my wedding, using a font I loved was important to me, but now that I have a lot more free time, I’ve been trying to learn more about type and checking into different artists that catch my eye.

This brings me to where I was tonight. While I can’t remember where I first heard about her (I do know it was somewhere in the 100+ wedding blogs I follow daily…most likely from the always-inspirational Nole at Oh So Beautiful Paper…), Jessica Hische had a way of popping up several times in my wedding planning. I think the biggest influence was from her “Hendrix” wedding invitations on Bella Figura:


I also remember seeing the work she did for Tiffany & Co.:

{ via }

The exhibition I went to see tonight at Art in the Age in Philadelphia though was of her Daily Drop Cap project:

“The Daily Drop Cap is an ongoing project by typographer and illustrator Jessica Hische. Each day (or at least each WORK day), a new hand-crafted decorative initial cap will be posted for your enjoyment and for the beautification of blog posts everywhere.” { from }

{ via Jessica Hische }

I went down to Philly right after work and was looking forward to seeing some of her prints in person. I felt a little out of my element and imagined that everyone else in there were all graphic designers/art students so I just casually checked everything out in the super-cool place while making my way to the back to see all the prints. I ended up talking to Daniel, the guy who is actually the curator for Art in the Age for a little bit! I explained my love of and appreciation for but lack of knowledge about type and design. He was super-nice as we discussed Jessica’s work and even offered to take a picture of me in front of the prints with my iPhone:

He definitely made me feel more comfortable. I was able to meet Jessica and chat with her for a little while too. She was so friendly and encouraged me to keep feeding my love of type. I picked her brain about letterpress, how calligraphy can help with understanding letterforms, and how I should expand my vocabulary of letterform variations (…did I just geek out there for a minute?). Before leaving, I did end up purchasing the F unmounted print (although I had asked the girl working the desk if they had her ampersand print which is my absolute FAVORITE of the letterpressed ones, to which I received the response…”am…amp…huh?” Sigh. Oh well, maybe once I can fit another print in the budget?) and a little present for Mr. that was totally unrelated to Jessica’s prints.

While her letters are “not for use in personal logos and branding”, I can’t help but be inspired by how one letter can completely change the feel of a document. Anyone else feel me here? So even though I’m already a huge fan of invitations that incorporate a unique font overall…

{ via RIFLE }

{ via Oh So Beautiful Paper }

…I’d be interested to see how the concept of a Daily Drop Cap could be incorporated into an invitation suite, aside from the traditional monogram.

First thing that comes to mind is the M on the reply card…the one where you’re supposed to fill in your name after?

{ via Minted … I don’t think it’d look right with this type of RSVP but just so you know what “M” I’m talking about… }

Anyone else have any ideas? I would LOVE to receive an invitation that uses type creatively and it would certainly make me even more excited for the event! …Is that bad?

It was awesome to be able to take the trip down to Art in the Age and meet Jessica. I am even more a fan of her work now than I was before! I will certainly have to get her ampersand print in the future too :)

Has anyone else developed a new, unexpected interest while wedding planning?

*Bella Figura is one of EAD’s fabulous sponsors.  For information on EAD’s editorial policies, click here.