Friday, September 16, 2011

Dumbo the Flying Elephant

For this week’s case study we find ourselves back in Fantasyland, looking at one of the most popular attractions within the Disney theme parks, Dumbo the Flying Elephant.
Dumbo the Flying Elephant is a simplistic carousel-like attraction, where guests can board one of 16 pachyderms on an aerial adventure. Each elephant "gondola" vehicle has its own joystick that allows guests to control how high or how low they want to go. As guests whisk through the air to jovial circus music led by Timothy Mouse, they can catch spectacular views of Cinderella Castle and the rest of Fantasyland.

Dumbo the Flying Elephant will soon be moving as we all know by now. Its new location will be Fantasyland Forest, which is a part of the new Fantasyland expansion. Dumbo's new home will come with various upgrades and enhancements. I look forward to seeing it in its new surroundings with all the wonderful thematics and atmospherics, and of course, the type treatments those Imagineers are plussing into this time-honored classic.
From a typography standpoint, Dumbo’s pickings are slim. Not much signage or pathfinding is used around the attraction, so most of my research comes from attraction posters and what little signage there is. It comes as no surprise that Dumbo the Flying Elephant is branded heavily with circus-looking display fonts, also classified as Tuscan display fonts. Other prevalent classifications are Woodblock, Western, and Slab Serif, and let's not forget some of those classic medieval fonts used to brand Fantasyland, which also make guest appearances. All of the display fonts and typefaces are crisp and clean compared to the look of the fonts used on the billing for Storybook Circus. I'm excited to see which look will win out once the new land opens.

Well that does it for Dumbo. Tune in on Monday as we continue our Epcot Center World Showcase Retro '71 shirts. Until then, have a great weekend.