Immigration…

Paul Cutler's picture

This is strictly about a graphic interpretation so I sincerely hope that it doesn't become a flash point.

What symbols, images come to your mind when you think about this topic? I have a few in mind but they seem very obvious and I was hoping to get some fresh perspectives.

I am specifically interested in immigration as it existed at the turn of the 20th Century.

Any thoughts are appreciated in advance.

pbc

fontplayer's picture

Hours of waiting, bureaucratic headaches, and a bunch of people who should be fired is how I think of most government agencies where paperwork is involved. Speaking from some experience with the INS pre-9/11.

Scalfin's picture

Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty, and Jewish New York.

Paul Cutler's picture

That's more what I'm looking for Scatin, just a little more abstract. You nailed the time period.

pbc

jupiterboy's picture

Hats, horizon, photographs, ocean, radio.

Dan Gayle's picture

The first graphical thing that pops into my head are old registration forms using typewriter-inputed names and info, slightly crooked.

The lines of quarantine, ALA the Godfather II, where young and old had to wait as nurses in white slowly made their rounds.

Entire families hoarding together in overly-cramped cargo ships in stormy Atlantic ocean waves.

blank's picture

Boats. Luggage. Lice. Horrible food. Incarceration and/or institutionalization of anyone deemed undesirable or mentally unfit. Irish, Italian, and Jewish names being changed. Paperwork. Confusion.

And of course, relief. Ellis Island and New York may have been pretty crappy places to stay, but it beat the hell out of starving while the aristocracy of Europe slowly choked out a collective death rattle.

Dan Gayle's picture

Thousands of Swedes and Norwegians getting their last names changed to Johnson instead of Björn's son or other non-English sounding phonemes.

prakash6164's picture

Its first day today. Not exactly lost but how much time is needed for the PICTURE 60 x 60 to get uploaded.
Have few interesting extensions to fonts and calligraphy. Would share ideas and thoughts.

Paul Cutler's picture

Thanks people. The typewriter angle is one I am mulling over for sure.

What about this scenario? Does this bring anything else to mind?

Apparently when you arrived by boat you sailed past the Statue of Liberty and then landed at Ellis. If you weren't going to NYC after processing there you went to a train terminal in New Jersey and from there you entered America. Trains, the western migration, manifest destiny, etc…

Any more thoughts?

pbc

blank's picture

“Trains, the western migration, manifest destiny, etc…”

Sounds good, but you’ll have to be very careful to keep the immigration angle from getting lost. Americans have a weird nostalgia about trains.

pattyfab's picture

This is a beautiful book of portraits of immigrants through Ellis Island. It's mostly portraits altho there are some photos of Ellis Island and some documents in the intro.

http://www.aperture.org/store/books-detail.aspx?ID=433

Paul Cutler's picture

True James but at this point I just have to let my mind wander - there's something out there and I want to find it.

Love the book Patty, that is spot on.

pbc

Paul Cutler's picture

How about narrowing this down to a font since this is typophile. What font has the spirit of those times? Typewriters, obviously. I was looking at P22 Declaration Pro and it has a feel I like. What I like about it is it's maritime feel and it's placement in our subconscious. It feels just a tad off though.

thoughts?

pbc

blank's picture

What font has the spirit of those times? Typewriters, obviously.

Maybe for immigration officials working in offices, but I doubt that too many of the immigrants of that period would have had much interaction with typewriters. Something much more blue-collar seems more appropriate.

Paul Cutler's picture

The main text in this piece is set in Berthold Akzidenz Medium Condensed. That has the period feel for me. I am looking for a headline font or a font to base a logo on just to unravel this a bit more.

pbc

pattyfab's picture

From the little bits of writing/printed matter in this book I would suggest three possible approaches:

1. typewriter

2. handwriting - but an old-school script kind of writing - P22 Declaration is in the right direction but maybe too formal. A lot of these photos have writing on them, it's script but not so flourishy.

3. Fonts that were in common use for printed matter at the early part of the century, such as Century Old Style, Cheltenham Old Style, Caslon 540.

Also you might try to keep the design in line with the look of the period, centered type (at least the headlines), nothing too flashy. Keep in mind the limitations of metal type. A broadsheet type of design could be nice.

Also look here: http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&q=ellis+island+documents&um=1&ie=U...

http://images.google.com/images?q=ellis+island+records&um=1&hl=en&start=...

Paul Cutler's picture

I like direction #2 - Declaration almost had the right feel for me and I think you nailed it when you said it was too formal.

I'll take a look at the last 3.

The first thing I looked at was typewriter and it just didn't do it for me. Haven't had the chance to look at the distressed versions though.

Thanks Patty.

pbc

jupiterboy's picture

Clarify migration vs. immigration. Maybe ships vs. trains.

http://www.csub.edu/~gsantos/img0005.html

Paul Cutler's picture

That's what I liked about Declaration - had a slight maritime feel to me. Old maps, etc… But it wasn't quite it.

Thanks for the images Patty - what struck me was the word refugee. That may lead somewhere…

I guess fogginess only got me so far. Here's the design brief:

We are doing a festival in Liberty State Park. This is a new identity - I have the main body of it nailed down and just need the correct spice for the name. The name is All Points West. Apparently that's what they called the train station in New Jersey where the immigrants left for the rest of America. The train station is right there - I believe it is part of the park.

I searched for distressed scripts and Batarde Coulée from Lineto looks promising. Almost there…

Unfortunately I can't find a place to test the text - oh well keep searching.

pbc

Paul Cutler's picture

BTW I have already done a logo using Akzidenz with a NYC subway tilt to it. A wordmark with a tiny twist. They are not digging it and the more I look at it I agree.

pbc

Hiroshige's picture

An early piece I did using this great iconic figure. I see this figure as a Canadian outside of America, to represent immigration. But also I see the Statue of Liberty to represent the true qualities of freedom which still attract the American immigrant to this day.

I'll leave the multicolours and strong thematic repetitions (abstract crescendo and decrescendo), to your own interpretation...

Paul Cutler's picture

You can see the statue from the park Hiroshige so no doubt that is in play. I have a photo shot from a helicopter as a background that shows NYC, the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, etc…

So it's definitely in there already.

Thanks for your input.

pbc

Sharon Van Lieu's picture

Earlier in this thread, my strong impression was of a handwriting font. Something like this maybe -

Petronella

Sharon

Paul Cutler's picture

Nice Sharon - I don't know if it's bold enough for an identity but I am definitely going down the road of handwriting fonts today. I've been screen-grabbing samples and dumping them on a small version of the piece to see how they look. Don't worry font designers, I will purchase instead of outlining when I find the right one.

I like that a lot Sharon - just put it in there.

Still pretty fond of this.

pbc

Paul Cutler's picture

I really like the Petronella Sharon - it is probably too bold of a statement to get through the minefield of opinions, but I think it works all day. Thanks.

pbc

Sharon Van Lieu's picture

You're welcome, Paul. :-)

Kellie Strøm's picture

All points west? It's not too far from Liberty's crown to a compass star.

Dan Gayle's picture

I recently purchased Secret Scrypt Pro from Canada Type. Loving it! There are something like 4 alternates per letter, and good Opentype programming. It's messy and sloppy and bold. Just like real handwriting.

pattyfab's picture

Dan, that's great and looks like it might be just what Paul is looking for. The alternates make it actually look handwritten. I think Batarde Coulée may still be too light and formal - reminds me a lot of Chanson d'Amour from MVB. Viner Hand could work but it's so overused.

A few more here:
http://www.texashero.com/houstonpen.html
http://www.archivetype.com/Single-Fonts/
http://www.myfonts.com/browse/foundry/sherwood/

Paul Cutler's picture

Kellie -I went down that road and it just felt too literal - but thanks for the thought.

I like that Dan. The price is certainly right. I just tried it and it's a little too real… :)

Those first 2 foundries are really cool Patty - texashero actually lets you download a demo with some letters disabled. That's a pretty cool idea. After trying Emily Austin, Lamar Pen, Houston Pen and Texas Hero I am digging Lamar Pen.

And now I'm in big trouble because I like too many things - time to put it away for the moment and revisit. It will be a miracle if they let me get away with it - a festival identity that isn't the heaviest weight font available. But one never knows…

Thanks everyone.

pbc

ebensorkin's picture

Olicana? Or does that feel too pleasant/optimistic?

oprion's picture

Hmm, iconographically, I'd say: Hats, trunks, britches, head scarves, smoking pipes, fiddles, sacks, small stacks of books tied with thread, crudely written papers, badly weathered shoes, fleas, lice, beards, monocles, walking sticks. Typographically, for some reason, it makes me think of FB Cheltenham.
_____________________________________________
Personal Art and Design Portal of Ivan Gulkov
www.ivangdesign.com

dezcom's picture

The Ellis Island web site has plenty of visuals that can give you the flavor of the place and times,

http://www.ellisisland.org/photoalbums/ellis_island_photo_album.asp

ChrisL

Paul Cutler's picture

You guys are amazing - so many insights.

Going down this road of handwriting it's either Sharon's suggestion (Petronella) or bust for me. It just feels right.

I have poured over those Ellis Island sites and it all came down to that eventually.

thanks

pbc

Paul Cutler's picture

Sharon - it survived. Not only survived but was really liked. I actually used the line "It's the handwriting of every immigrant who went through there on their way to the American Dream" as a justification behind this "anti" logo. Petronella has been purchased, tweaked a tiny bit, outlined and sent off to New York for them to populate it with the bands and other local info.

You can take a look here.

Excellent tip.

I love it - it is SO not what you're supposed to do for a rock fest. Perfect.

pbc

jupiterboy's picture

Paul, I have a friend in LA that is looking for help. Contact me if you are interested.

The type looks great BTW.

Sharon Van Lieu's picture

Thanks, Paul. I'm really tickled.

Sharon

Paul Cutler's picture

FYI - here's the website for the festival - if you click on the poster it will enlarge…

http://www.apwfestival.com/

pbc

Sharon Van Lieu's picture

You did a great job, Paul. I love it. I'm glad you posted the end product.

Sharon

Paul Cutler's picture

Thanks Sharon - you're a definite part of this… -:)

I wish I could have done the typesetting for the bands - seems pretty ragged to me but the identity was all the time I can spare.

pbc

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