Yesterday another edition of Reasons to be Creative in Brighton, UK closed. This terrific three-day festival is the successor of the legendary Flash On The Beach. Voted “Best Conference of The Year 2013”, it gradually evolved into an inspirational event with a broad scope, mainly focusing on creativity and code. I was honoured to be part of it in 2012 when I provided the Tuesday night’s Inspired session with my movie poster talk and did a livestream from the Influxis Lounge, and last year I had a blast simply attending the friendly conference. Unfortunately I could not make this edition. Everything from programming to stage set-up feels relaxed yet is meticulously organised by the extremely huggable John Davey. One constant are the great opening titles. I discussed last year’s titles by Royal Bandit; this year they were produced by Dutch creative agency From Form.
Jurjen Versteeg, Ashley Govers and Wouter Keijzerhe, the founders of the Rotterdam-based film & design studio, have diverse backgrounds in film making, interior design and advertising. This is the basis for their signature style which combines contemporary digital techniques with good old-fashioned craftsmanship. To that effect they integrated their own workshop into the studio to enable them to custom build set designs and hand craft the props that are a common factor throughout our work.
The opening sequence for Reasons to be Creative is a great example of the studio’s approach. The titles are built (in a quite literal sense) around the concept of a fun fair. Names are revealed through old-style games, with letters falling, spinning and tumbling into the proper order. At the end the camera zooms out and we discover that all the elements are in fact part of one construction that ended up being displayed on the stage at the conference.
Even though every part of the installation was carefully created, assembled and painted by hand, the sketches were made on the computer with type. The main typefaces Brandon Grotesque and Neutraface may look very similar to the untrained eye, yet they have two distinctly different styles. Neutraface is more architectural with a whiff of Art Deco, while Brandon Grotesque’s proportions and almost imperceptibly rounded corners lend it a friendly expression. Trend and Detroit have theirs roots in the lettering tradition, which naturally led to the specific variants. Complemented with an arsenal of “novelty” faces, they form a typographic palette that lends flair and pizzazz to the titles.