With more than 180,000 followers on Instagram, typography artist—and artist with a capital A—Timothy Goodman, clearly knows what he’s talking about. His art and words have adorned anything from walls, buildings and packaging to cars, people, shoes, and galleries all over the world.
But whether it’s a large-scale public mural on the streets of NYC, a marker scrawling on a Uniqlo t-shirt, or writing personal stories on Instagram, Goodman hopes that his work is a catalyzer for dialogues about difficult topics such as love, heartbreak, politics, race, therapy, and mental health.
“A lot of designers try to impress other designers with the obscure stuff,” he remarked once in an interview with Magenta. “I think maybe early on I thought that was cool, but I no longer find that interesting or compelling. I want to make work that resonates with a lot of people,” he stressed, adding that it’s important to consider who you’re making your work for. “Are you making it for other designers, or are you making it for people in the world?” asks Goodman.
But with clients that include giants like Google, Samsung, Uniqlo, MoMA, Airbnb, Netflix, The New Yorker, and The New York Times, Goodman might be speaking to both high brow and low brow crowds. Believing that the greatest joy as a designer and an artist is the ability to connect to another human emotionally through his work and words, he treats design as a practice rather than a profession.
“I work all the time, but it feels normal,” he says. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. I hate those quotes about loving what you do, but it’s true. When you’re stimulated by your work and you’re running a business for yourself, it doesn’t really feel like work; you’re just doing it.” Words to live by.