Posts Tagged ‘ typographic portrait ’

Typographic portraits February 2012

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Fox News chief: a typographic portrait

Thomas Porostocky, credited as the illustrator of this portrait, has produced a striking piece of typography for a profile about the Fox News CEO Roger Ailes, that appears in Esquire magazine.

It’s worth zooming into the left page to see the details.

[ Esquire February 2011 ]

Typographic portraiture


In a previous post I showed how to create a typographic portrait using an existing photograph and several tools in Photoshop.

These wonderful examples above, from the book Men of Letters & People of Substance, show the art and craft that goes into creating a typographic portrait through careful observation and appropriate abstraction of form. The equivalent of drawing with letters, and the pun in the title of the book.

The really clever aspect of these portraits is they are made almost entirely from the letters contained in the person’s name. The only exception I see is the use of an occasional parenthesis.

In addition the letters are all from one typeface. Greene uses only Gill Sans, and Wolfe uses Argenta.

Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich, the artist behind these examples, is a past master of such typographic ingenuity. His wonderful book and subsequent website, Bembo’s Zoo is a spectacular demonstration of the art of type.

Typographic portrait: How to create one

If you’ve ever wanted to create a graphic portrait like the one below from type, you’ve come to the right page. You need a good black and white image, then follow the steps underneath. Thanks to Valerie Tracy for the image, and to Kimberly Hines for the instructions.

How to create typographic portraits

If using a PC – Replace (Command) with (Cntrl)

1. Select a portrait photo with good contrast & a light background.

2. Go to image>adjustments>brightness/contrast and adjust the contrast to 40

3. Go to Select>Color Range [choose shadows & click OK]

4. Copy the selected pixels in a new layer [Command +J]

5. Go back to the photo layer

6. Go to Select>color range again and choose mid tones

7. Copy to a new layer [Command + J]

8. Click the shadow layer & apply Edit>Fill (use black color with preserve transparency selected & click OK)

9. Click the mid tones layer & edit>fill with 50% gray [this makes a portrait from black & gray color]

10. Click on the shadow layer & press [Command + E] to merge it with the mid tones layer

11. Merge the Shadow layer with the mid tone layer

define a brush made from type

12. File>New Document. Set Foreground Color to black [press D]

13. Use the type tool to type different words in various fonts & sizes

14. Ctrl-click on type layer to rasterize type for each word

15. Click on each type layer and go to Edit>Define Brush Preset (may want to hide other type layers while you do this). Name each brush so you can keep track, and click OK

apply the type brush to the portrait

16. Go back to the portrait document; create a new layer & make sure that black is the foreground color [ press D]

17. Select the brush tool [press B] and select one of the brushes you created
You can adjust the spacing between each word by going to window>brushes to adjust spacing—clicking on brush tip shape in the brushes panel

18. Brush across the photo and repeat with all brushes

19. Fill it up really well and try to follow the areas where it makes sense on the picture—sort of leave empty areas clean—more or less play around until you get something you like.

create a mask and paste the type inside the mask

20. Create a new layer & press (Command + Delete) to fill it with white

21. Drag this layer under the brush layer

22. Hide all the layers except the black and gray portrait layer & then click on the layer to activate it

23. Select All (Command + A) of the layer & then copy (Command + C)

24. Activate the layer brush & click on Add layer Mask

25. Hold <option> & click on the layer mask thumbnail

26. Paste the content of the black & gray portrait layer in the mask (Command + V)

27. Deselect (Command +D) & then invert the mask (Command +I)

28. Activate the brush layer by clicking on the layer thumbnail (not the layer mask) & the text will appear inside the white & gray areas of the mask

29. Create a new layer & add more text brushes outside the mask