Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Trajan Whores

Yes and Yes. Yes I like it. Yes it's overused.

I admire Trajan, even though at this point Carol Twombly's type can seem soooo late 80s. What's cool about Trajan to me is that it refers to—surprise!—Trajan's column and is an homage to the incised proclamations on the column. But it's so overused—lazily and badly—that it's a typographical cliché, almost as bad as that your students's typographical chestnut, Papyrus.

I can see why you think of Trump and Trajan as evil twins.
TRAJAN's column
is a monument in Rome to TRAJAN in TRAJAN's Forum to commemorate TRAJAN's victory in the Dacian Wars. The all caps face is perfect for a man like TRUMP who's built many a TRUMP Tower and TRUMP Hollywood and has had a few TRUMP cards in Atlantic City. Ego. Pride. Empires. It can get exhausting.

The Trump Hollywood logo is cleaner and less hackneyed, but the typography still lacks any detail and finesse and space. I do fear it's indeed the finished logo. At least it's used on the Trump Hollywood website, paired incongruously with a flirty flirty script (a nod to bikini babes?).

The most recent Ebert jacket (I'm not even going to talk about the earlier one) looks like an embryonic satire on movie titles and trailers. So many film titles use Trajan that there's a jokey film about it (which has no doubt been forwarded to you by at least 10 designers). My guess is that the jacket designer chose Trajan to evoke all those film titles and just didn't push it far enough.

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