As part of my first year studio course at CalArts, we made type specimen posters. I selected Granville—a modulated sans-serif typeface designed by Jean-Baptiste Levée of Production Type in 2015. It has a high stroke contrast, yet is adaptable to many contexts and sizes.
In my early stages of research, seen below, I realized that Granville’s elegance and sophistication was most comparable to tennis. So I used tennis motifs—fuzzy lime green balls, French burnt orange clay courts, and crowds of people—throughout the design.
modern book design
In my Typographics course at CalArts, we designed modern book designs using the Swiss Modern model of grid layouts and alignments. I chose to create my own book made up of paintings of women who are tired and/or over it, titled Reposed Malaise. I used Avenir as the book typeface with a 7x12 grid. Pages include front and back cover, half title, title, table of contents, section opener, chapter opener, and a text and image spread.
As part of my studio course at CalArts, I designed an entire brand identity for mmry—a memory management company that would exist 50 years from now. Users would be able to review, save, and delete memories of their choosing.
As part of the brand guidelines, I came up with the idea for the company and designed the logo, color and type palette, and various applications including: business cards, social media icons, ads, device, guide book, uniform, swag, spatial experiences, and website mockups.
I wanted to design a logo that conveys the intangibility and fluid nature of memories, and how mmry will help users keep (or delete) theirs. The stencil, paired with a subtle blurring, is both legible and conveys the sentimental + technological aspects of the brand. Sirin Stencil was used for the logo, and Bariol for the body text.
The spaces are mmry banks: communal spaces, similar to museums, where the public can submit and view memories as part of a greater archive. I used a lot of my own personal memories for the project, including a photo of my mom as a baby with her dad in Iran in one of the ads.
As a first generation Jewish Iranian American, I wanted to find a way to both document and better understand how all the conflicting parts of my identity coalesce. Cooking, but mostly eating, this exquisite cuisine has helped me better understand what it means to be Iranian, Jewish, and American post-Revolution and post-assimilation to American culture.
I photographed, wrote, and designed a trilogy of books chronicling the culinary and personal history of my grandmother Mahboobeh, my mother Mersedeh, and my own.
In Mahboobeh and Mersedeh, I sat down with my remaining grandparent and my mom to discuss our family history through food. I hoped to better understand my identity and heritage through the recipes and stories that have been passed down from generations.
All the Farsi in each book is each woman’s handwriting, and the color palette of each is inspired by the dishes discussed and prepared.
As part of my first year studio course at CalArts, we were tasked with iterating on compositions—a la Bauhaus exercises—for over a month. Here are some of the resulting comps.
classical book design
In my Typographics course at CalArts, we designed classical books, meaning we used a golden section to layout text and images. The typeface used had to be a classical serif, so I used Times New Roman. We designed an entire book, but I’ve included the cover, half title, title, table of contents, and chapter opener.
The zine and photo series Spaces I Occupy features honest, untampered commonplace scenes of my life since moving back in with my parents after college. As a child of Iranian immigrants, our home is a crashing of two worlds: my parents’ preservation of the old is at odds with our modern existence.
I approached our home as a stranger, catching my surroundings off guard in their messiest states. From the communal spaces to my own bedroom, I have relinquished control.
I used black and white film to accentuate the ‘stuck in time’ feeling my settings convey. These external spaces embody the dichotomy that I experience internally every day. I used Photoshop to edit the photos and InDesign for Spaces.
These larger format designs feature promotional band posters, play on words, favorite song lyrics, and prose + photos by me.
I made this poster for my friend Rachel, who hosted a backyard charity comedy night. I worked closely with her to incorporate her love for 70s color and type into a lighthearted, eye-catching design. Knowing this would be posted to social media, I made the poster a looping gif that she later timed with music.
Best Coast music poster
This poster features the final line from an essay I wrote after I felt underappreciated. I wanted the poster to be quietly powerful, one that is visually strong enough to carry the weight of the words. A serif felt too delicate, and many sans-serif fonts lack character. Futura was the perfect choice for this because it is a strong and relatively unconventional font. Futura is often found in Barbara Kruger’s work, which mostly highlight poignant phrases and social commentary.
This poster features an excerpt from an essay I wrote after someone compared me to the Disney character Princess Jasmine from Aladdin. I used a strikethrough on the words I most wanted to emphasize, similar to Glenn Ligon’s paintings of text. By partially obscuring the most important words, the viewer inadvertently pays the most attention to those words.