Posted by Doug White on Friday, October 4, 2013 - 00:00 | Follow me
When responding to a text message, most people use their fingertips or a stylus. Freelance designer Cristina Vanko busts out a golden-tipped, ink-filled calligraphy pen.
Well, at least that's what she did during a recent weeklong experiment. Vanko says her hand-lettered texting project yielded some interesting responses – and lessons.
Vanko, 24, graduated from Indiana University with a BFA in graphic design in 2011, but has since expanded more heavily into digital design. Her experience designing for screens prompted her to start the clever "Modern Day Snail Mail" project. "I've been creating apps and doing more mobile design and didn't want to lose my roots in hand-lettering," Vanko says. "I also wanted to question my texting habits."
So for seven days in August, Vanko responded to every text message using an old calligraphy pen. She'd draw some decorative and "flourishy" letterforms on spare paper (or the back of a random receipt), snap a quick photo with her iPhone, and then send that as her "text" message.
Vanko says several findings have stuck with her:
- It's critical to be clear and thoughtful in all of your communications, even if it's just a text message.
- Spelling and grammar still matter. Again, even when texting.
- People feel special and appreciate it when they receive any form of a handwritten note.
- Our culture relies way too much on emojis and emoticons. :-)
Here's a look at some of Vanko's typographic text messages:
Freelance designer Cristina Vanko says seeing how friends responded to her hand-lettered texts was one of the best parts of her Modern Day Snail Mail project.
Using her dad's old calligraphy pen, Vanko created some sweet-looking texts.
A collection of Vanko's typographic text messages from her weeklong project.