Didot: Type & Motion

10/10/2020 Project Introduction:

  • Design a 60 second video that introduces and highlights unique characteristics and personality of selected typeface.
  • Look back at the adjectives and 50 word statement/list you created in the last project as a guide for your video.

10/11/2020 Finding Music:


  • Fashion-like, runway music but has variation in beats to pique interest.
  • Not too slow-paced, but not too fast either.
  • Up beat, not too subtle.
(above) example of fashion house music I listened too

List of songs I put down as potential picks:

Top Picks:

  • Has a nice punch to the beats.
  • Satisfying clicks.
  • Too short, no extended version :(
  • Has the ‘fashion runway’ feel but with a twist.
  • Has variation in the beat, some parts feel sporadic.
  • Easy to trim at 1 minute.
  • Has a stronger fashion runway feel than “Match” by Alltta.
  • Slow start, first minute has no variation in beats — will be difficult in staying interesting.
  • One of the songs in 20syl’s minute tunes created for the whole alphabet.
  • Has fun synths and variation in beats.
  • A song I’d listen to honestly aka working with this song would be most enjoyable.
(above) created a playlist on Spotify of songs I found on both Spotify and Youtube

10/12/2020 Script + Storyboard:

  • Rarely used in body copy, mostly for display purposes.
  • Has horizontal unbracketed serifs, along with upright/vertical stress.
  • Strokes within each letter have abrupt thickness modulation, distinct to modern styles.
  • Iconic uses/variations of Didot were created for companies like CBS, Vogue, and Harper’s Bazaar.
  • Creation of Didot was inspired by John Baskerville’s process for the Baskerville typeface.
  • Didot was the first modern typeface created, made with the purpose of idealizing written calligraphy rather than emulating it.
(above) revisions of script
(above) storyboard 1
(above) revised ver. of storyboard 1

Meeting Jaclyn for Crit:

  • “Hash”, “Peek-a-boomer” by 20syl were interesting song choices, but agreed that “Match” by Alltta fit nicer.
  • It’s okay to put emphasis on color throughout the video, doesn’t have to have some super distinct graphical element
  • If color is used effectively, the video can be equally as impactful.

Other notes made by Vicki:

  • Remember to consider the things we’ve learned in the past: grids, flow, and hierarchy.
  • Read script out loud as you play your music, helps check if the sentences in the script is too complex/hard to process if video is faster paced.
  • As you animate, also read it aloud as it plays to check readability and pacing.

10/14/2020 Starting the Animation:

  • Too fast paced, if you tried reading it out loud, it’s hard to process.
  • Type size is too large, consider shrinking it down.
  • “Modern” transition/effect is too thick, Didot is buried under stroke weight of Proxima Nova.
(above) crit. notes Jaclyn was kind enough to take for us 😮

10/16/2020 Full Draft:

(above) even though I strictly stick to a certain module/grid layout, I used guides to keep transitions consistent.
(above) adding image with multiply layer; Image Credit: https://unsplash.com/photos/hy1R37C1ypk

Critique with…

  • Some parts of song is high pitched weirdly??? watch out for the transitions?? maybe its Zoom.
  • Recommend translating image into other parts of video.
  • Date was a millisecond too fast, very thick line between dates (can get distracting).
  • Exaggerating the emphasis on letterform ‘t’ in ‘different.’ can make message more clear.
  • Thinner horizontal + vertical stress dotted lines at end would look more consistent with the hairline lines I’ve been using.
  • Can consider music fade at the end of the video if concerned about music ending too abruptly.
  • Show more of Didot, characteristics, sneak peeks in middle of video.
  • Reminder to watch out for kerning/tracking!!! (i.e. DIDOT and Didot) (Think Optical vs Metric Kerning)
  • Use type as image.
  • “Grandeur” can consider having it ‘grow’ with the beat for a change in pace??
  • Concern with abrupt ending: Didot ending on the ‘dropping’ beats, pause, credits roll, then coming back with last few beats can provide a sense of closure.

10/22/2020 Final Critique:

(above) final video for critique — subject to potential changes after


  • Good music choice.
  • Has a fashion show vibe but not cliché.
  • Struck by music even though sporadic, type was handled well.
  • Fashion show vibe was definitely strong.
  • Pacing overall was too fast??? (couldn’t hear him oops)
  • Including moments where its intentionally slower can maintain interest while watching the video, especially when the whole video is consistently fast paced. i.e. If video was slowed in some parts at 10–15 seconds in.
  • Multiple stroke weights + size makes some parts feel random(??), if want to make consistent, keep type size consistent to make it more harmonious.
  • Watched it three times, and couldn’t really read it a single time haha
  • But was visually informative which kind of makes up the pace. (i.e. the ‘wooshes’ at “different” scene).
  • Super informative video.
  • The pause in music (the “best used for display” part) was very effective in giving a break that puts people on the edge of their seats.
  • Use of color is very effective in highlighting.
  • Use of color and motion does a lot to make this succeed.
  • Wonders how I might give “more detailed views of the face’s characteristics in lieu of other imagery”.
  • Agrees with comments made about color use and music choice.
  • Also agrees with considering using more and/or different images throughout video.

Revised Final Video + Spread:




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Sarah Xi

Sarah Xi

Hey! I’m currently studying design @CMU with a focus on communications design + minor in HCI. You can find some of the projects I’ve worked on here.