A Quirky New 3D Typeface Using Our Favourite Eco-Friendly Companion

This brand new typeface Type-Cycle is the latest project from motion designer Marcel Piekarskiand combines 3D alphabet letters with monochrome bicycle parts. Fashionable, captivating and streamline, the animated series was created with Cinema 4D and After-Effects as well as deconstructed bikes.

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Each letter uses a different mechanical component from the handle bars to the wheels, given a new lease of life in the animated GIFs which accompany the still images of the series. Celebrating his two great loves: art and cycling, Marcel’s is an inventive example of both upcycling and typeface design.

Marvel begun the project (aptly) with the letter ‘B’: after looking at the separate parts he used the wheels to create the curves of the letter and the series developed from there. The result is both quirky and accessible: available in poster form so that bike lovers, or art lovers, everywhere can create their own works of art at home using the various letters.

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We spoke to the London-based motion-designer to find out more about the project.

The Plus: What inspired you to create this series?
Marcel Piekarski:
It’s a celebration of bikes and typography.
It all started with the letter B; “B for bicycle”.
After starting to design the letter I quickly realised that I needed a detailed 3d model of a bicycle first.
Whilst modelling the 3D parts for the letter B, I quickly realised that I wasn’t going to stop there and making the rest of the alphabet just seemed like a natural progression.
Once I had created the 3d model and the concept of the first letter I just needed to find time to develop and finish the project…

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TP: What was the creative process? (how do you design the letters etc)
MP:
Once I designed the letter B, modelled the bicycle in 3D and had the concept for the project it was a matter of exploring the shapes, typography and seeing what worked best.

TP: What equipment did you use? (what type of camera, animation software)
MP:
I used Cinema 4D, After Effects, Photoshop

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TP: Why black, white and gold?
MP:
I use a lot of greys in my work, but I wanted to keep the bicycle as real as possible.
Gold always complements white and black.

TP: Did you need a mechanical knowledge for this project?
MP:
I have one bicycle – but I am not a specialist. I had to do a lot of research once modelling the 3d bicycle to be as accurate as possible.

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TP: What is your own relationships with bicycles and how do your hobbies influence your work?
MP:
I like cycling – its quite popular here in london. I have a fixed gear, which is the type of bicycle I recreated in 3d for this project. I always find it useful to try to influence my work with hobbies or general things I like – the work usually ends up being better.

TP: How does this series differ from your other work?
MP:
It differs from my everyday work a lot – we don’t generally focus so much on typography in the projects that I work on at Future Deluxe.
In terms of my other personal projects the Type-Cycle concept is in the style that I feel the most confident with…

TP: What is next for you?
MP:
Looking forward to some time off work and holidays :)

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