It'll be fine.

The key to successful TASK AVOIDANCE is to play one task off against another.  The very first year of the Lichtenbergian Society, for example, I accomplished none of my Proposed Efforts, but I did build my labyrinth.

So you would think that with 1) finishing the book; 2) writing a ballet; 3) designing a burn; and 4) a flock of other small projects, I would have enough to keep me distracted and productive.  Well, sure, if you're going to think logically about it.

As all Lichtenbergians know, however, what bobs to the surface is what you need to work on, especially when it's more entertaining and a lot easier to get done than a book or a ballet.  This means that it's perfectly okay for me to spend an hour or so producing little memes for my work as Placement Lead for the burn.

A little background: last year about this time I woke up to find myself in charge of placing all the theme camps at the burn, and somehow the phrase "It'll be fine" became Placement's mantra.  I proceeded to create a series of graphics that I would use to anchor any Facebook post, and it became a game for me to find the most bizarre images and then plaster the catchphrase on it.

For example:

You get the idea.  It was a great way to keep the public persona of Placement whimsical and somehow reassuring.  (Spoiler alert: it was, in fact, fine.)

With burn season upon us, I realized I needed to replenish my supply of memes since part of the fun is that I never use the same meme twice unless there's an appropriate topic being addressed.  I recently realized that some pretty interesting photos were being handed to me on my Twitter feed, and so I've been right-clicking left and right like mad.

Why am I writing about this?  I want to show you why I enjoy it so much: it's because I am a font junkie.  ("Hello, my name is Dale and I'm a font junkie."  "Hi, Dale...")

I have 757 fonts on my computer.  I bought a new suite just the other day.  One never knows when one is going to have to design a hipster craft beer label, you know?  (Just kidding.  My son designs his own hipster craft beer labels.)

So the joy in making my "It'll be fine" memes is finding just the right typeface. Do I match the tone of the photo?  Do I choose an ironic font, i.e., a happy, elegant font for a creepy scene or a distressed font over some cute baby animal?

Then there are the issues of legibility and balance to deal with.  As I said, a great time waster.

Let's do one together.

Here's the image:

Lots to like here: strong composition, open spaces for text, curious and amusing subject matter.

So diving right in, with just your regular Century Gothic:

That's one placement.  Here's the other:

Or maybe a third one:

I don't often go for rotated text, but this might be okay.

Now the fun starts: which of the 757 fonts on my computer would be exactly the best?

I don't like this one right off the bat: too fat, too sloppy.  It belies the elegance of the penguins and the compositional balance.  So I can avoid all the hand-brushed poster fonts.

I have a plethora of script fonts, and this works kind of, but I think I need something stronger.

Even though I've been leaning towards sans serif fonts, this works too.  (I am by no means showing you every font I looked at—this post could fill the rest of the week if I did that.)

In the end, I've settled on Charmante, a sweet little hand-lettered font that, to me, gives us the sense of elegance and privilege, even though it looks as if the penguins are closing ranks for a dance-off.

And look, I just killed another 40 minutes when I could have been working on the ABANDONMENT chapter.

UPDATED: I got the ABANDONMENT chapter largely finished, so see, Lichtenbergianism works.  IT WORKS, I TELL YOU!


Feel free to leave comments on this or any other post!