I was asked by CD Stephen Skalocky to create some custom hand-lettered elements for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. Alongside the likes of other industry-leading letter artists Jessica Hische, Erik Marinovich, Cyla Costa, Kyle Letendre, and Luke Lukas, the 2019 issue is a lettering-filled colossus.
Initially, I was just asked to work on one of the location story openers, an editorial headline piece that lived on the opening spread of the section of photos from a certain location.
For Kangaroo Island in South Australia, Stephen was looking for the decorative, highly flourished cartouche style lettering that I'm known to be obsessed with.
Anyone that knows me, knows that I love a good script captial 'I' (read: they're the worst), but with a little creative swashing, I was pretty happy with the way this one turned out.
The supporting text of the location and the photographer credit were suggested to be included in the actual design as well, if it made sense, and with a flourish-heavy design like this, those swashes can easily lend themselves to forming some great banner-like containers. It's always a fun challenge to get letters to follow a very specific and unusual path without looking wonky and forced, so I was pleased with how this one turned out.
After the Kangaroo Island piece went so swimmingly, Stephen asked if I would have time and the interest in rocking out another piece. He warned me, however, that this one would not be script focused.
Contrary to popular belief (and my portfolio) I not only can, but love to take on projects where I can flex my non-script skills that people don't see from me as often.
The desired direction was to have a high-contrast elegant serif that extended the length of the spread, so I wanted to accomplish that, while doing something totally custom and stylized. Exuma was the hero of this design, with "Great" and "Bahamas" being secondary, supporting text that could be in whatever style I chose. I'm a sucker for a script-interacting-with-a-high-contrast-serif solution, and that proved to be as enticing as ever for this piece, with Great getting a fittingly apt treatment.