Girlhood and Shattered are typefaces inspired by Tiny Hands International
, an organization in Nepal, India, and Bangladesh that helps orphaned and abandoned children find secure, loving homes.
There are currently 12 children’s homes where orphans and new parents who love them can form a new family. Each home is kept “family-sized” so each child can receive the attention he or she needs and so necessities can be provided more easily. The parents focus on the development of the whole child, not only by providing food and a place to sleep, but by providing the opportunity to be creative, to get an education, and to learn to overcome obstacles. A “Dream Center” is currently under construction in Nepal that will consist of six children’s homes, a school, and a medical center. The school and medical center will not only be available to the people living at the Dream Center, but also to the greater community surrounding it.
The design of Girlhood is inspired by Devanagari, a language spoken in India and Nepal. In its written form, many of the characters are connected. While brainstorming ways to make this idea compatible with English, I realized that we also have a connected way of writing: calligraphy. The variation in stroke weight and placement on the baseline reflect the uniqueness of children being helped by Tiny Hands. While many of the kids may come from similar backgrounds, each is different in his or her own special way. When each letter is used in combination with others, they form little families, or words, different from any other with their own unique meaning and purpose.
The design of Shattered is inspired by the background of the children being helped. The world has broken these kids through neglect and deprivation, and the childhoods of many have been shattered. To reflect this, the letters have been broken and shaken; however, hope remains where the letters connect. Despite the fact that the individual letters have been shattered and are barely legible, the connectors remain. Words can still be formed where the letters build community. Words provide the context that helps each letter become more recognizable, much the same way that the people close to us help us find ourselves.