Turn That Frown Upside Down? The Project Faces Debate.

The typographic twitterverse is aflutter today. The subject? Project Faces, an iPad app by Adobe that allows users to customize the skeleton of a typeface and watch it magically change from flat to fabulous in a matter of seconds. Well, not exactly. At least, that’s not the consensus on Twitter. The application itself, demoed at Adobe Max last week, is perhaps less interesting than the ensuing discussions. Here are a few collected tweets worth sharing.

So, what do you think? On a sliding scale (haha!), is Project Faces just a fun application for novice play or an insult to the process and craft of type design? Feel free to comment below.

3 Comments Turn That Frown Upside Down? The Project Faces Debate.

  1. Tiffany

    My initial tweet was a bit uninformed. This is what I get for having an instant (bad) reaction to the video found via Khoi’s initial tweet (https://twitter.com/khoi/status/653691824188604416). The application can only create from pre-installed skeletons. It cannot be used AFAIK to manipulate other typefaces.

    The problem with this is that it depends upon where you sit to know how you will see this. I can understand that for those who do not understand typeface design (and the task that it truly is) that this would seem like a sort of godsend. And for some typeface designers I could also understand that it is an insult to their hard work and determination.

    I don’t think type designers should be threatened by this. It is more an app and less a real tool. And the clients that would throw this in a type designer’s face and say “but look I can do it all here”, well those aren’t the clients you want anyway. Am I right?

    Reply
    1. Amy Papaelias

      Agreed. I think, ultimately, the twitter discussion(s) sparked a host of interesting questions: to what degree must a tool be functional rather than playful? Does a playful tool succeed if it helps educate the general public on type design? What are some existing / previous / current efforts in parametric type design and how does this overlap / differ? Why an iPad app instead of a web application?

      Reply

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