The shapes in Bertrand’s paintings made it into the movie. Vermette and his team assigned meaning to the inky tendrils that project from each ring, developing a dictionary of 100 symbols. A single logogram can express a simple thought (“Hi”) or a complex one (“Hi Louise, I’m an alien but I come in peace”). The difference lies in the complexity of the shape. A logogram’s weight carries meaning, too: A thicker swirl of ink can indicate a sense of urgency; a thinner one suggests a quiet tone. A small hook attached to one symbol makes it a question. The system allows each logogram to express a bundle of ideas without adhering to any traditional rules of syntax or sequence.
Interesting how much it relates to a real design process for a real world typeface.