Typography can give silent words a voice, to bestow otherwise texture-less text a tone. Timba Smits is one such typographer who injects his text with life.
Much of Smits’s work brims with style; his words attract our attention both with proportion and colour, causing our eyes to jump from word to word at varying speeds as we decipher the sentence. This very manner of reading gives the letters a pitch, bold letters with character seem to swallow space, almost shouting, however this isn’t the standout feature in Smits’s work. Manny typographers utilize big bold letters, Smits’s manages to evoke a sensory overload with his thick letters that too alternate between font/colour, bold words that drown out the small, forcing the reader to lean in and find out more to the loud message written above.
Smits has an immense amount of detail within the limited colour palate, aiding the commotion. There is a cascade of lines, print and colour that work with the eye to escort it in a various manner of directions, but not necessarily controlling our eye in a linier fashion around the image, letters may be read out of order, and the message will be discovered upon further inspection of the visual.
Smits has been sighted to bear a love for the olden style “I have quite a lo-fidelity to my work quite common in late 50’s and early 60’s design and quite a good spraying of texture,” although he takes a liking to this style, he detests being called retro, as his practice naturally amounts to the old aesthetic, and there’s no attempt at being antique.
The tone within Smits’s work is a result of working largely by hand “the main characteristic of my work is that it is almost always 3 parts handmade, one part computer finished,” from a young age Smits adopted this particular style through cartoons and other such interests he harbours a fondness for. The pop culture influence is quite hard to miss.
Smits manages to give his type a voice, a voice that shouts above itself. Although his words are far from annoying, but closer to beautifully chaotic.