Above the Fold Awards Winner: Type Connection

Brian Miller’s Above the Fold Awards, which honors the best web, motion and interactive designs from students around the world, had more than 125 entries. The jury selected 34 winning entries, including a Best in Show and seven honorable mentions.

aura seltzer, designer, creator of type connectionThe Best in Show went to Type Connection, created by Aura Seltzer, a student of Ellen Lupton at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore. She’s going to receive the Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 Design Premium, a ticket for the HOW Interactive Conference, registration in a HOW Design University online class and the Above the Fold Awards trophy.

We asked Aura to tell us a little more about Type Connection, her typographic dating game.

type connection typography game

How did the idea for Type Connection come about?

Type Connection originated from an idea I had that typefaces’ personalities are very similar to those of people. Even the adjectives we use to describe typefaces are quite anthropomorphic. I thought that applying a familiar metaphor like love and dating would create a fresh, lighthearted approach to pairing typefaces.

What software tools did you use to create the site (if any)?

I designed Type Connection using Adobe Creative Suite Design software. I coded the website in HTML, CSS and jQuery using Coda.

type connection typography game

What was the timeline for the site’s creation?

I was set on my thesis idea in September 2011 and dedicated the subsequent months to creating the core pieces of the website: selecting typefaces, coming up with strategies, and creating the characters and matches. I developed the bulk of the site’s writing while creating mockups and early layouts for the site. By coding multiple iterations of the site, I was able to refine the interface gradually. It all came together in the end. The website’s launch coincided with the opening reception for my thesis exhibition at MICA in late March of this year.

type connection typography game

What’s it like learning from a design legend like Ellen Lupton?

I am extremely grateful for the feedback and encouragement that all of the MICA faculty gave me during my graduate studies. MICA’s program is quite flexible, which allowed me to pursue my interests while learning new skills and working collaboratively. My professors pushed me to produce my best work. Ellen, in particular, helped me clarify my concept and edit my writing. She forced me to clarify and simplify—two very important points when creating a website.

type connection typography game

Where did you do your undergraduate work?

I recently completed my MFA in graphic design from Maryland Institute College of Art. I received my undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, where I majored in fine arts with a concentration in communication design.

What’s next for you?

I’m excited to move to Philadelphia where I will be working as a designer for Happy Cog. I look forward to expanding my web design skills by focusing on large-scale websites and user interfaces.

We want to see your best web design work! Enter HOW’s Interactive Design Competition to show the world what you’re made of — deadline: July 2, 2012