What is queerification?
Queerification is the process of making things and places friendly for LGBTQIA+ individuals.
Please read this research by Arup and the University of Westminster or watch the supporting film.
Fritha has created a new tool for design using 3D animation as 2D sequins or glitter. Fritha is calling these 2D graphics, "tassays" after a tassie which is an old Scottish word for a small cup. Cut glass and crystal whiskey decanters and glasses were a major inspiration in creating these graphics. Some exquisite examples of ceremonial crystal goblets can be seen in Room 079B at the Museo Del Prado in Madrid. The other meaning of tassie is the jewel or decoration found on some luxury pens, for example the iconic tiny snow-capped bead on the end of a Montblanc pen.
These tassays are similar to 3D graphical objects called "meta-balls" (hence meta-tartan) which are 3D balls that blend together to make new blobs. They are really useful for sculpting organic forms like humans or animals in 3D animation software like Maya or Blender. Tassays, when rendered from different angles have the effect of appearing like beads or sequins when laid out in multiples in 2D.
Fritha has decided to use this new invention for the queer community because, having looked into queer design and read through Queer X Design: 50 Years of Signs, Symbols, Banners, Logos, and Graphic Art of LGBTQ by Andy Campbell she was disappointed to realise that the only major, clear signifiers of queerness are the rainbow flag and possibly the hanky code. Indeed she found that a book that covers 50 years of queer culture is sadly, although beautifully designed and well written, rather flimsy because, it seems, there is not much to write about! She also found it strange that so many famous fashion designers are queer yet have not created signifiers for queer communities.
Coming from a background working for brands like Charlotte Tilbury, Burberry and Jo Malone, Fritha felt it appropriate that queer communities should have something a bit more luxurious and indeed, wearable, as a signifier.
The tassay seemed to fit the bill. Because it looks like glitter or sequins and can be used across various media from textiles to projections or signage on buildings it is extremely useful and will hopefully prove a handy tool for queer designers and their allies.
The hope is that in time the tassay will become synonymous with queer communities and add to the growing sense of pride in people who for millennia, been marginalised and oppressed and still are in much of the world, including, unfortunately, Fritha's home country, Scotland.
If you would like to look into queer art, design and signifiers further:
If you would like some of these tassays for your club, bar, bookshop or charity in digital form please get in touch at email@example.com. We have some very low cost options for charities and small businesses - we want people to sprinkle these liberally across their premises, posters and t-shirts! As liberally as glitter at a Pride parade.