Shaun Schinault is senior graphic designer for the Peppermill and communications director for the local chapter of the American Institute for Graphic Artists. The group has been hosting an annual type walk event since 2011 in which participants take photos of the letters of the alphabet found on signs, graffiti and other places.
To learn more or purchase tickets for the Aug. 2 event, visit https://bit.ly/2LxTxME.
Tell me how a type walk works.
It’s a scavenger hunt. The idea is to capture “A” through “Z” with any example of unique, fun, cool, interesting looking typography—so neon signs, letters on the road, anything you can find.
How would a person progress through the type walk?
We do a little map. We kind of give a little zone to stick within. Every year we have an area or a theme. Last year we did midtown. … We’ve done Virginia City. We’ve done downtown. We’ve done downtown Truckee. The idea is to actually try to keep it in order. That’s the challenge. You’re supposed to go “A,” “B,” “C” as you do it. It’s kind of a fun event because it makes it open to anybody. It’s not just designers or artists or photographers. It could be anyone who wants to walk around.
So you take pictures of the letters, “A” through “Z.” Are people doing this with cell phones or, like, their Nikons or Canons?
Both—you get cell phones. You get cameras. You get everything.
Is there a place you’re focusing on this year specifically?
We’re starting over right by the Basement, with the idea of trying to capture a little bit of the neon that’s still downtown before it all disappears.
That’s definitely something we face. A lot of it is disappearing.
Exactly—and quickly, too. And we have cool examples that are very unique to Reno. And, you know, those are disappearing quickly.
How long do people have?
About two hours—so it’s quick.
At the end of the two hours you’re meeting at 10 Torr? Then what?
We’re going to share. The idea is while you walk and do it, you’ve got your cell phone connected. So share it on Instagram. And we always do a poster. The first year was a “T” made out of letters, “Y” and “P,” out of the letters. So this year will be the “K.” We’ll actually spell out “type walk” with this year’s poster. And then we’ll have a poster pick up party in September.
A poster pick up?
Your mission is a poster. So if you collect them all, you can spell “type walk.”
When you put the poster together it’s comprised of, what, the photos of letters you like best?
Right. We go through and pick our favorites, “A” through “Z” and make the letter out of the 26 letters of the alphabet.
How many people are into typography? What kind of crowd does this event draw?
That’s kind of the cool thing about it. I mean, it’s obviously graphic designers. But it’s also fun for photographers, artists. And, again, because it’s kind of a fun just go out and search, it’s easy to bring a friend. … It’s accessible to anyone. It’s kind of like the old license plate game when you’re a kid in the car.
Twelve dollars. That includes your poster, the poster pick up party and there will be a little typography lecture, too, at the pick up party.