The objective of this project was to create posters based on a personal experience using expressive typography. These designs are based on an event called “Second Saturday” at The Space Upstairs (thespaceupstairs.org), a hidden art lounge in Pittsburgh, PA. At this event, artists from the area gather to share art in varied mediums. Dancers perform improvised movement to live music artists, and after a certain point in the night, the floor is open to all. Improvising and taking up space on the floor amongst experienced artists was intimidating and borderline invasive. Vulnerability and fear of being criticized were prominent emotions. Despite this, The Space provides an overwhelming atmosphere of community, acceptance, and experimentation. Afterward, the feelings towards the event were largely positive and uplifting.
The three large colored circles and beams represent the red, blue, and green spotlights on the dance floor during the event. These colors reflect my experience: red for negative emotions, blue for collaboration and The Space’s values, and green for positive outcomes. Racing feelings are expressed through the repetition of words in the spotlights. The chosen typefaces contrast to show my conflicted emotions and emphasize the anxious nature of my thoughts.
The two highlighted words are placed sporadically to mimic patterns of movement in improvisational dance. The word “improvise” has both a literal and metaphorical meaning in the design: literal for the style of dance showcased that evening and metaphorical for the ability to feel more comfortable with the unexpected. The word “within” comes from a quote seen on an installation in The Space that evening: “awaken your forgotten love from within.”