Thursday, April 4, 2013

Jazz Dance Poster

I was asked to make a poster for an event by Helsinki Traditional Jazz Dancers. I don't know much about jazz dance but sounded fun, so I decided to do it. I hadn't done any actual hand-made lettering for a while so I thought that could be the starting point of the poster.

I first made some pencil sketches which looked all right. Then there was a break in the work and I misplaced the original sketches, so I drew more different ones, inspired by a book of Doyald Young's work that I read at a friend's place. There was still missing a certain flow that I had in mind, so I tried lettering with a Pelikan ink, the lettering instrument actually being the plastic tube that is attached to the cap of the ink bottle. This took a little practice at first, but I managed to get the hang of it quite fast anyway. This produced some nice randomness that I wanted the text to have.

I actually thought I would letter all the texts by hand but that turned out to be a bit too big job for the schedule so I settled for a font that would contrast the handmadeness. The client was very happy with the poster, as were I. Nice job. Now I need some more ink to continue. The final poster is below.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Koti6: Hollilla - music video

This is from the last spring/summer but I noticed I hadn't written about this yet so here goes. My friend asked me if I liked to make a music video for their band Koti6 (pronounced kotikutonen, meaning more or less "homemade"). They use a lot of sampling with some rapping / singing and instruments, and give a lot of room for their collaborators too. I also was pretty much free to do what I wanted with the music video, I did get some scanned reference materials but wasn't really required to use them.

I started figuring out the project with those scans but then turned to some of the more abstract video clips I had shot with my 7D. There was a lot of intentional blurriness and abstract surfaces I had shot just because I liked that kind of look. So I started testing those. One clip at a time they seemed sort of interesting but then I started layering them on top of each other which worked very well. There might be a maximum of seven layers on top of each other at the same time. What worked and what didn't was kind of intuitive, there might have been a million options equally good as the final video was.

I was aiming for some kind of semi-abstract world that would have a similar feel as some of the reference scans had, I think it worked out. The story is quite abstract too, but it moves through urban scenery, then to the forest setting and then underwater. In the beginning there's a bit of a mix of settings but the main  The video was supposed to have more graphical transitions between the parts but they turned out to be unnecessary after all.

I also learned a lot about Final Cut Pro X while working on this. I'd mostly used After Effects before, but since this was more of a pure editing job after all, it was a lot faster and comfortable to edit with FCP X. All the layering of the clips was done in FCP. All material is purely video, no generated material. Transitions and some color adjustment was used. And some retiming.

On a small record release party the Koti6 guys spoke about how they work in a kind of intuitive fashion when making music. That was kind of same as the process in the video editing too, I just didn't know it while making it. Nice coincidence in any case.

There's a new video coming for a remix version of this song later this spring.

Koti6 facebook

Monday, March 5, 2012


Late last year I was working on an identity & title design for Blogistania with my friend Riikka Kurki. Blogistania is a 10-episode series on finnish bloggers working mostly with crafts, featuring one person per episode.

We had an idea about making a kind of travel video of the country of Blogistania, featuring different locations, all built from stuff used in crafts and such. The producers liked the idea and the initial test clips so we built miniature sets in the Güüti Film Studios (my kitchen table) and shot them with Canon 7D and various lenses. For example, in the header image the water is cellophane on top of blue carton, the beach is brown sugar (boats are candy) and the palm tree is a brush standing in a clump of Play-doh with a pearl necklace around it.

There is some camera shake in the movements and other "errors" but they kind of fit the theme of the program so we didn't polish the camera movement too much in post-production. We did make a lego dolly track but it didn't work that well, sadly. There's a link to the title video at the bottom of the post.

The logo (above) is made with one stroke so it can be recreated with, for example, string. The end title background video below is an example of that. It's been shortened to 10 seconds from the original 40.

End titles background clip in Vimeo

The title clip at Riikka's Vimeo

Blogistania in Facebook

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I made a small postcard to promote the opening of a new website for Lucky's, a comic book shop in Vancouver, Canada. It's a nice little shop, we visited it this May while traveling there. The address is in the picture and you can also test the legibility of the text at the same time.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Office Lettering zine

I made a small office lettering -zine from the material on this blog. It's available this weekend from Helsinki Comics Festival small press area and later from somewhere else. I'll update the "later" part later. 20 pages, color.

Monday, August 22, 2011

ArtovaKino film club Logo

I'm slowly returning from long summer vacations, and it's time to start posting again. I was asked to make a logo / identity for a film club that takes place in autumn in Helsinki. There used to be an active film club tradition in Finland but it's lately been fading away. These guys want to revive it, and that's a very good thing.

I wanted to make something that play with transparency and give an impression of light, like the British Film Institute and Cinémathèque Française logos have. That is naturally very fitting for projected art. I started with some hand-made lettering but I couldn't quite make them work. Eventually I took a more geometrical approach that seemed to work much better in this case.

The logo is formed of lines but their thickness and coloring vary according to application. The basic form with thin black lines is for white backgrounds:

The basic color logo is the headline image of this post. Below it is placed on top of an image, the transparency gives nice effects on the colors.

When the lines grow even thicker, the form turns more abstract. Also, different line thicknesses on the colors break the forms up nicely. The basic form of the letters remains the same.

I'm working on an animation also to be shown before the screenings.

ArtovaKino website.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Tattoo Dictionary in Tate Britain

I was asked to come to Tate Britain in London to make the Tattoo Dictionary. That's pretty nice, I'm not complaining. The show is on this friday evening (June 3rd), welcome if you're around! The photos from the event will go to flickr afterwards.