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International Women's Day Winners

This year we’ve teamed up with International Women’s Day to celebrate the awesome work of talented women typographers. Our mission was to help raise visibility and increase the volume of commissioned work for female lettering artists worldwide.

To help achieve this, the last 2 months we've been running an exciting competition calling upon female lettering artists to develop creations with impact that support the International Women's Day (IWD) 2020 campaign.

We’ve been overjoyed with the response from this competition. With nearly 300 amazing entries it was difficult to select only 3 winners from each category. Below are the winners of our first two categories. Here you can see their amazing outcomes and learn about their process and what this campaign means to them. We’ve also shared more creations that were close runners up!

 

Each for Equal Winners

Vera Drmanovski

Instagram: @vera.drmanovski

Describe yourself to us.
Persistent and passionate, cut out for paper cuts (pun intended) lettering artist, who believes that child-like creative curiosity and humour are essential for personal & professional success.

What is the concept behind your design?
I took an abstract and playful approach with this piece. I strategically used colour and shape to communicate the message behind Each for Equal; they represent our individuality and uniqueness, and equality in opportunity. The mission behind this campaign is to raise visibility and opportunity for female lettering artists, I thought the eyeballs can be a good way to symbolize that mission in my design, plus they look cool. :)

What was your process for creating the artwork?
I always start with a sketch and make most of my creative decisions in this stage of the process. This is a stage where I experiment a lot until I find the right concept. Once the conceptual stage is completed, I move to Adobe Illustrator to create vector art that is later used as a cutting template. This is when I start playing with colour so before I move onto making a paper art all creative decisions are made and I have a solid vision of how the final artwork will look like. Then the fun part starts, cutting my designs. I use the template created in Illustrator to transfer the design so that my cuts are as accurate as a human hand can create. All my pieces are cut by hand on purpose, as I love the imperfect organic look of the final art.

What does being each for equal mean to you?
Equality is a romantic thought unless everyone is on the same page. That is exactly what Each for Equal means to me. But it will not happen organically, work needs to be done to make this a reality, and we all have a part to play. Recognizing and embracing our differences is the key; see the beauty in it, not a threat. It not only applies for career opportunities but equality in all aspects of life for every individual on this planet.

Do you have any views or comments about any gender issues relating to the world of “women of typography”?
We are living in a time of major social changes, and gender roles are a part of that change. I do believe that one of the reasons for the disbalance is the double standard when it comes to age with women and men. Often women, under the social pressure, give up on their dreams and goals after they reach a certain age, therefore shortening the time and opportunity to succeed. Partly there is still a stigma out there, and partly we do it to ourselves as we see age on our faces. World of lettering and graphic design is presented as a young people’s game and as a person who got into this game later in life, I used to feel the need to hide my age as I feared judgement. I think it’s very important to recognize this and to encourage women of all age to pursue their passion and never give up. It’s not the age that counts, it’s how you use it.

 

Reiko Hirata

Instagram: @letterordie

Describe yourself to us. 
Hi. My name is Reiko Hirata, I’m a Japanese expat for the last two decades, currently based in Milan, Italy via Los Angeles, CA, USA. I’m a freelance graphic and motion designer with a strong interest in letterforms, and I discovered my love for lettering 6 years ago.

What is the concept behind your design?
For this piece, I wanted to express and celebrate unity among women/people and acceptance of diversity. I decided to use women’s smiling faces for a positive attitude through the message in lettering on top.

The faces are in different shapes to represent diversity. The ornamental lines are not only decorative, but also can be perceived as hair, ribbons (representing celebration), and strings to connect each other (representing the sense of unity).

What was your process for creating the artwork?
I did quick thumbnails on paper, then I worked on all the rest digitally: sketch to inking with Procreate, finalized in Photoshop.

As a lettering style, I wanted to do something dynamic, energetic, and positive. Therefore I decided to use a slab serif with interlocks with a mid-century flare, which is something that comes naturally to me.

What does being each for equal mean to you?
It’s not only about women but about every human being.
I hope one day we will live in a world where people don’t judge each other, but embrace and celebrate differences instead.

Do you have any views or comments about any gender issues relating to the world of 'women and typography'?
Right now, I am mainly working as a graphic and motion designer, so I don’t have a direct experience in the typography field. I personally never had any major issue by being a woman in the design field in the US nor in Europe, but I have to admit that in my beloved home country, before undertaking this career path, I felt the weight of the difference in gender expectations on the working environment. This is to say that unfortunately Japan still is a patriarchic society. I really hope that will soon change for future generations.

 

Sonia Yim

Instagram: @just.drawing.words

Describe yourself to us. 
I'm a hand-lettering artist and illustrator based in California :) My speciality is telling a creative story through all my art. In addition, I love adding a positive spin to my art pieces and using bright & bold colours.

What was your process for creating the artwork?
All my process starts with a concept. I wanted to convey a strong 'feminine' concept while emphasizing the typography. As such, I utilized the female sign (with the typography inside the sign) as the focal point of my design. In addition, I wanted to use the female sign as the magnifying glass to further emphasize the meaning of 'each for equal'.

What does being each for equal mean to you?
Each for Equal means making this world/ art community to create a gender-equal world. One of my goals as an artist is to overcome any challenges we face as female artists and celebrate our achievements together!

Do you have any views or comments about any gender issues relating to the world of 'women and typography'?
I think the view toward 'women and typography' is changing. I believe it used to be more male dominant, however, I see so many talented ladies breaking this barrier. And I'm all for celebrating that!

 

Each For Equal Runner Ups

Marta Silva

Instagram: @marta_type

Olga Muzician

Instagram: @olgamuzician

DelphieJoy

Instagram: @delphiejoy

Jane Wongjirad

Instagram: @cottonwood312

Cynthia Lopez

 Instagram: @cynlopink

 

Happy International Women's Day Winners

Evgeniya Antonova

Instagram: @antonova.lettering

Describe yourself to us. 
My name is Evgeniya. I am a graphic designer and an illustrator from Moscow. A couple of years ago I fell in love with lettering and started experimenting in this area. I like to combine illustration and lettering, adding a bit of humour :) I can even say that drawing letters is my real passion nowadays!

What is the concept behind your design?
In this specific work, I tried to show a woman in her calmness, love and beauty. She is free and happy. This is what I feel today, and what I’ve been always trying to find! This is the harmony in myself—the harmony I’ve tried to depict in letters :)

What does International Women's Day mean to you? 
In Russia, Women's Day is an important holiday. We greet our loved women of all ages with flowers and gifts trying to make this day a special one for them. It’s not much about women fighting for their rights. It’s just a happy family holiday that we all love.

 

Stéphanie Deldicque

Instagram: @s9photographizm_art

Describe yourself to us.
Hi, I'm stéphanie aka s9photographizm, I'm a thirty-something french woman who does lettering,  graphic design and I'm also a photographer. 

What is the concept behind your design?
My concept behind my design are the old school posters, but I wanted to give a touch of modernity by my style of "wavy" lettering and the flashy colours, pink being a reference to women for a long time! 

What was your process for creating the artwork?
For my process, I prefer to start on paper for drawing my letters and then I move on photoshop with the graphic tablet to clean this and add the colours and texture. 

What does International Women's Day mean to you? 
I think it's important, women should have the same rights as men without having to justify themselves, men don't have to, so why should we do it?! I don't understand that in the 21st century we still have to do this.. so come on ladies we have the girl power!

Do you have any views or comments about any gender issues relating to the world of women typography?  
I've observed some changes, with people like "Gemma O'Brien", "HomSweetHom" or "Jimenezlettering"  (they are a lot of more), people started to see that lettering or graffiti or more generally painting wasn't reserved only for men! Accounts are being created to represent us like you IWD or "ladieswhopaint", when I saw this, I was happy to see other women doing these murals or lettering or whatever and they inspire me to do the same!

 

Anna Suvorova

Instagram: @suvorovaart.ru

Describe yourself to us.
My name is Anna Suvorova. I have been doing calligraphy and lettering for seven or eight years. I teach at the Suvorovaschool online school. I participate in festivals and exhibitions of calligraphy in Russia. I wrote and published two books and two recipes on calligraphy and lettering. 

What is the concept behind your design? 
I wanted to draw something after a hard day, I went to your account and saw that today is the last day of accepting work. I decided to just draw the inscription fofan, because there are a lot of wonderful works on hashtags, I was not even sure that I would be in time on time. So quite by chance, this work was born :)

What does International Women's Day mean to you? 
I like Happy International Women Day! This holiday is associated with spring, awakening, the sun and good weather.

Do you have any views or comments about any gender issues relating to the world of women typography?
The gender problem in typography and calligraphy exists, while from the lips of women and men we hear phrases such as “Women's calligraphy”, “Men's calligraphy”. While people think such phrases will be such a problem. I believe that in calligraphy there is no such separation, this is fiction and stereotype. I hope that over time this separation will be less common and will disappear altogether.

 

Happy International Women's Day Runner Ups

Tamara Arkatova

Instagram: @tamara_arkatova 

Maria Tabarcea

Instagram: @artabarcea

Samantha Quinn

Instagram: @squinnandco

  

Thank you to all who have participated in this competition. We are continuing to accept creations for our third category, Women's Equality statement or thought, throughout 2020. We will share these sporadically throughout the year on both the International Women’s Day and Typism social media channels.

 

 

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