Digital Storytelling

Found Ephemera – Text

There are a number of ways to use text as design elements in your family history projects. A little creative inspiration can make your words as beautiful as the thoughts they project. All it takes is a little imagination and some great fonts.
typeart01
Something as simple as a beautiful font combined with changes in size and color can turn a simple quote into a beautiful sentiment. In this case I used the ALS SyysScript font [OpenType – $30] on a Keynote slide. Because I have different font sizes on a line, it was also necessary to adjust the line spacing to maintain symmetry.

Another option is to used scanned text – from personal documents like letters and journals to printed text like old books, newspapers and advertisements. When the text is relevant to the person or story, it becomes even more significant. In the example below, I found a scanned copy of my great grandfather’s book at Google Books and grabbed a screenshot of one of the pages to include with his photograph on a sketchbook page. I reduced the opacity of the text to give the photograph more emphasis.

Scanned type and photo

Scanned text and handwritten pages from your family archives can also be converted into brushes for your favorite photo-editing app. These brushes are the digital equivalent of rubber stamps. Yes, you can download any number of existing text brush files, but why do that when you can create your own in a matter of minutes. If you don’t believe me, this short tutorial shows you just how easy it is.

Now, go take another look at your family archives – with a designer’s eye this time.

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