What does Star Wars and Helvetica have in common? More than you might realize. The original designer of the Star Wars logo based her work on a modified version of Helvetica Black. Still, it’s safe to say that most people don’t think about Luke Skywalker and Helvetica together very often.
But as these colorful typographic posters by Argentinian designer Fernando de Carabassa show, Helvetica and Star Wars might just be the graphic design equivalent of chocolate and peanut butter: a match made in heaven. Intellectualizing why it works, though, is a little harder. To me, I think it’s because, thanks to its iconic title crawls, Star Wars is already synonymous with large blocks of clean text. It feels like a natural extension to use colorful blocks of Helvetica to expand those title crawls into Word Art.
De Carabassa’s designs use painstakingly laid-out blocks of text and solid colors to evoke the imagery of the first three Star Wars movies: everything from the sight of two suns rising over the planet of Tatooine, to the crackle of a lightsaber igniting, to the barren, ice-cold world of Hoth. In my mind, I like to imagine these posters come from a world in which Massimo Vignelli was asked to contribute designs for the original Star Wars press kit. Star Wars, Helvetica, and typography might not be closely related ideas in most people’s minds, but maybe they should be.