Ollie Caldwell is Making Magic with Her Ambitious, Psychedelic Typography

Posted inSVA Branding: 100 Days

100 Days is an annual project at New York City’s School of Visual Arts that was founded by Michael Bierut. Each year, the students of the school’s Master’s in Branding Program spend 100 days documenting their process with a chosen creative endeavor. This year, we’re showcasing each student in the program by providing a peek into ten days of their project. You can keep an eye on everyone’s work on our SVA 100 Days page.

100 Days of Magic

Has there ever been a time when you noticed the arousal of emotions caused by simply looking at a word? If you see a sign that says “danger” or “beware,” what do you feel? Are you scared, or nervous?

We all know that words are powerful, but could some of that power be accredited to the ways in which words are visually displayed? Whether they are short or tall, wide or narrow, whimsical or sturdy, colorful or monochrome, simple design elements can play a big role in how we perceive or respond to words. More specifically, this manipulation of text, or typography, is the art of arranging text to draw attention, evoke emotion, or convey a message.

Ollie explores the “magic” of typography and its psychological effects by expressing variations of the same word through various design elements such as font, texture, color, size, and hierarchy. In addition to experimenting with different design elements, Ollie also plays with the concepts of function and legibility to elicit different responses, emotions, attitudes, and perceptions from her viewers. What began as a simple experiment has evolved into a more profound study of fundamental design elements, typographic form and function, and color theory.

Follow Ollie’s project on instagram @100daysofmagic. To see more of her work, please visit her website ollieportfolio.com, or email her at ocaldwell@sva.edu.