Educational Korean Character (Hangul) Cards with a Filipino Twist


Design & Creative Direction

         February 2020


Cardstock, 5x5in.


Audra Hubbell

    Communication Arts 2021 Typography Annual 11 Winner

    Type Directors Club 67 Winner


Loosely based on Ray and Charles Eames’ House of Cards, this project aimed to design a cohesive set of cards that informs the viewer on a subject that is of interest to me as a design and as an individual. 


To provide a portal into a facet of my individuality and strive to make it resonate with a broader audience, I reflected on my past influences that shaped my identity and the way I see the world.

As a designer born in Korea and raised in the Philippines, I created a set of educational cards that is meant to teach users how to form simple Korean characters (Hangul) and pronounce them. Not only did I intend to express my cultural identity through the set of cards, but by incorporating a welcoming Filipino aesthetic, allowed users to see the Korean language as more approachable. 

The cards are divided into four sets, each set is a different organization/layout of the characters. The back of the cards have the English pronunciation of each of the characters.

Font used as template:
Black Han Sans by Zess Type

Given the timeline of the project, it was important to realistically consider the more complex Hangul forms. Although there are 24 separate characters, Korean words are formed in six different formations, as shown below— four of the simpler combinations were chosen to become sets. 

The left shows some of the words that can be created with the cards. As the characters distort and adjust to the square grid system, it was important for all characters to be custom-created and checked constantly to match its set. 

The card set’s design inspiration, the Jeepney, is the most commonly used form of public transportation that can be seen in the Philippines. Body panels are built with sheet metals or stainless steel, and decorated mostly with stickers or spray paint. Designs consist of caricatures, illustrations and pictures inspired from popular culture.

The crazy color palette and —my favorite element—the beautiful handmade type, make the Jeepney a symbol of a warm and welcoming country that is the Philippines. The card set draws influence from the Jeepney to convey the same sentiment and showcase the approachability of the Korean alphabets.

© 2021 Jenny SeoYoon Kim