K1NeT1C TYp0gRaPhY

One form of E-lit that has interested me the most is kinetic typography. Its appeal to me is its ability to make words come alive. Living in the age of technology we now have the ability to make words do things that they have never been able to do prior to computers. Words no longer have to lay flat on a paper page. The words are still technically flat on a screen, but they are energized, moving on their own. The words are now able to be actors who play a part in a story. The words and letters are animated so as to convey a more interactive message. In some cases the audience sees how certain words connect with other words in the work in a way which would have been difficult to see otherwise. The overall function of kinetic typography is to breath life into static text.

Kinetic typography artists use selections from all different mediums to produce a work. Clips of film, songs, and pieces of literature are all commonly used for kinetic typography works. A great example of a movie clip adapted to kinetic typography is the clip from V for Vendetta . In this clip the extreme alliteration of the letter “v” is highlighted with the color red, which adds emphasis for the viewer. As an example of a song put into kinetic typography I selected the extremely over-played/guilty-pleasure song “Fireflies” . I chose this particular video because it shows how kinetic typography can use a combination of animated words and images to convey a more interactive experience for the viewer. I believe kinetic typography is at its finest when it is utilized to animate a piece of classic literature. This portrayal of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 81 is a solid example of an older work being portrayed with images, typography, and music to create a whole new way to experience it. Speeches and sermons are also commonly targeted by kinetic typographers as seen in this clip from a sermon by Pastor Tim Keller. This is a great example of a common practice in kinetic typography in which the words come together in such a way that they reveal an image at the end of the video. Kinetic typography can also be used to present arguments similar to essays such as this brilliant presentation of a world without Facebook. Perhaps the most raw form of kinetic typography is that which does not incorporate a linear message of any kind. Some forms of kinetic typography rely solely on the creation of images using only letters or punctuation such as this work.

Now that we’ve seen some of the many various forms of kinetic typography, a question is raised. With technology becoming rapidly more accessible (as in tablets etc.), will kinetic typography eventually take over regular printed text? Will people prefer to read Shakespeare’s sonnets in kinetic typography rather than read it on a plain white page? Will printed books begin to disappear as a much more engaging way of reading emerges? It is difficult to think of this happening all around the world especially in third world countries, but what about America? I believe it is very possible that kinetic typography could replace regular reading at some point in the future.


  4 comments for “K1NeT1C TYp0gRaPhY

  1. February 19, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    I believe it is very possible that kinetic typography could replace regular reading at some point in the future.

    Really? This seems kind of extreme. I do really like kinetic typography (or just plain old expressive typography, when it’s not moving, that is), but I don’t know that we always like our words moving.

  2. egajeton
    January 20, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    Kinetic typography seems to be very interesting. I think it’s also valuable that you pointed out that it could be used across various mediums, connecting e-lit to film, music, etc. However, I’m not so sure it might replace regularly printed text. That being said, I don’t want to take away from its uniqueness and ability to portray in a different view.

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