If you’re one of those people that begins their morning scrolling through Instagram, you may have noticed the #36daysoftype hashtag take over your feed once again. So what on earth is this thing anyway? 36 Days of Type is a project started by Barcelona-based designers Nina Sans and Rafa Goicoechea, inviting illustrators, designers and graphic artists to reinterpret the alphabet, designing a letter or a number each day.

The very beautiful thing that I love about this project is that the base symbol is quite universal, but there are so many different ways to express the alphabet visually. Some designers like to decide upon a theme for the project, with each alphabet representing a different aspect of the theme.

For example, This year, independent animator Sandhya Prabhat (below) is using the project to focus on women characters in literature, using a quirky, digital style.

Other people tend to veer towards a more hand-drawn aesthetic, like letterer/illustrator Namrata Bhagat, whose theme for the year is environmental conservations.

Themes for the project don’t necessarily have to be complex. Take for example, San Francisco-based designer Tanya Bhandari’s simple but beautiful hand drawn typeface that combines a simple serif font family with the artist’s favourite plants.

They can even be rather abstract and grimy, like Delhi-based illustrator Pia Alize Hazarika’s rather raunchy typeface…

On the absolute other side of the spectrum, illustrator Parvati Pillai takes the theme a little further, using the project to share a deliciously illustrated recipe every day.

But maybe you don’t have a theme at all! Maybe you aren’t even drawing out your type! Some artists choose to interpret their alphabet in a rather more physical manner, simply using the materials around them to create…

While others tend to go a step further and add a layer of movement, whether it’s simply animating a letter in some form…

Or animating according to a theme, like Nisha Vasudevan’s adorable animated animals…

You can even simply use the project to rediscover the versatility of type, and observe it in different forms around you, like Mohini Mukherjee and her series of found type around Bombay.

Or, you can just look through the hashtag and swipe through the work of illustrators, artists, designers and creatives worldwide, looking for inspiration. Either way, the #36daysoftype project is an excellent way to make a foray into typography of all sorts, whether it’s creating, reinterpreting, or even just learning. It’s a great glimpse into how just a single letter of the alphabet can mean so many different things to different people.


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