Sunday, July 3, 2011

Number Plate Typography-350!!

My brother got his long due Bullet Classic 350 a couple of weeks back. He had been riding it without a painted number plate and unable to get one to do it the task had come to me. I was a quite skeptical of my capabilities to do it. When your canvas is expensive and beautiful, you wonder how badly you will ruin it. Anyway, I got myself up for the task. When I sat down to work on it, the days of letter design surfaced in my memories. During Mahendra Bhai's course in my third year I had to do sheets of letter drawing with shaved wood nib. But this was way up the notch in difficulties. For example - you have a brush in hand, which is slightly beyond your command in compared to a nib. Secondly, your hand doesn't rest on a huge desk, it has to find its rest in the air while your strokes are trembling on the number plate.

Since I was no way close to the skilled number plate painters who dance their hands masterfully with a determined control, I had to do a rough line drawing to keep the paint within. I imagined the type to be a serif one keeping the classy Bullet look. But as told earlier lacking the dexterity (painting the fine strokes required in serif with a brush) and tackling the visibility issues of serif on small number plate was a tough call. I stuck to san serif to keep it simple and safe. 

I was able to finish one number plate with long hours of sitting on the ground and bent back. Once done, it didn't look that awful as I had feared it to be. 
Although, if I sit with the rules the mistakes are in plenty - the 'K' is a bit too bold there but it is too late to rectify things and the scare of the canvas lingered. I am sharing the images taken from my phone while working on it. I think painting a number plate will make a fine exercise for a letter design course. 


  1. ...quite a wonderful job painting on the number plate as well as the telling its story...tu to harfan maula hai..!

  2. awesome work! when i get a new bike im coming over. :D
    also i want to see a picture of the bike!
    (because ive been wanting the same one for a long time now,too) :)

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