Marie-Anne Verougstraete, a graphic design teacher at The New England School of Art & Design at Suffolk University, knows how important it is for graphic designers to work for social causes, “Graphic Design has a social function: it can make a difference in social situations, can improve the environment in which people live, and can give people new ways to think about things. In a way, graphic designers serve the community and I think it’s important that they use their talent for the greater good, not just to make a living.”
This past spring, Marie-Anne and students in her Computer Typography classes participated in Font Aid V: Made for Japan.
Font Aid is a part of the Society of Typographic Aficionados (SOTA), an international not-for-profit
organization that supports the promotion, study, and support of type, its history and development, its use in print and digital imagery, and its designers and admirers.
Font Aid V began in March 2011 and is a collaborative project between typographers and designers to raise funds for Japan after the devestating earthquake and tsunami. According to SOTA’s site, “Nearly 300 contributors from 45 countries sent in over 500 glyphs in a single week.” The typeface is complete and ready for purchase for $20 at MyFonts, Veer, Fonts.com, and Linotype.
Marie-Anne had been involved with Font Aid previously after the earthquake in Haiti. Her Computer Typography classes of Spring 2010 participated in the creation of Font Aid IV: Coming Together, a font made entirely of ampersands to represent the idea of people uniting to help each other. After the disasters in Japan, she was called upon to participate in Font AID V: Made for Japan. This typeface was made up entirely of glyphs that symbolize Japan in some way.
Upon telling her students that they would be involved in the creation of Font Aid V: Made for a Japan, “They were excited to have the opportunity to work on a real world project and to contribute to a great cause. They created beautiful work. ”
Learn more about the Society of Typographic Aficianados and Font Aid here.