Artist Draws Detailed Portraits Using Only a Typewriter

While most graphic designers use high-tech software to create images, Álvaro Franca has chosen to return to the basics. Using a vintage typewriter, he creates incredibly detailed portraits of his favorite authors.

Franca begins the process by creating a reference image on his computer. This allows him to plan out the areas of light and dark shading on the portrait. Once the reference is ready, he uses it as a guide and proceeds to choose the letters and the number of strikes he needs to achieve the desired level of darkness.


For example, an ‘m’ creates a darker spot than an ‘i’  or ‘o’, because of  its density. So repeated strikes of the different letters at a single location cause different levels of darkness – sometimes even a deep black. But at first glance, you won’t be able to tell that the portrait is made of typewritten letters – not unless you look very, very closely.


Alvaro Franca has made five portraits so far – of authors J.D. Salinger, Jack Kerouac, Clarice Lispector, Jose Saramago, and Charles H. Bukowski – and plans to make another five before the end of the year. He calls the unique project ‘Typewritten Portraits’.







via My Modern Met

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