Formstorming: Alexa Berg


Page 31 from Lynda Barry’s graphic novel “What It Is”


Lynda Barry’s graphic novel, What It Is, features a series of images (or collages rather) that help to support the idea of formstorming, a term Ellen Lupton and Jennifer Cole Phillips describe as an “act of visual thinking” in Graphic Design: The New Basics. Formstorming is using your creative abilities to approach design solutions for problems that require more than one way of thinking. In other words, it relies on the imagination the designer beholds. It requires much endurance and exhausting iteration, but discovers originality to design dilemmas that dont often require simple solutions. On page on 31 of Lynda Barrys graphic novel, the series of images featured could be an example of formstorming for a few reasons. For one, the page explores multiple ways to produce text in graphic design by using several different fonts to create unique experiences each time. The top of the page says “Think of something you want to share. Write it here.” while below it asks the question “what happens when we put words together?”. This is Barry reiterating how different words combined together will create a different experience every time. It is the visual representation of the text in front of us that spawns the sensuality we experience. Also present on the page is the sentence “what happens when we keep words a part?” in a font that has gaps between each letter, also an example of why font style can be important. However, the most unique thing about this page for me was the re-telling of her favorite part of a story (written in cursive handwriting), about the starfish and the oyster. It made me think about how there are many different ways you could tell your favorite part of a story in a visual way, and how each one of those different ways will produce something different every time.

This entry was posted in Spring 2016 Archive (336), Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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