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What an extraordinary year in type and typography. And I am certainly not likely to be alone in observing this. After a decade and a half of struggle, “web fonts” finally took off and ran smack dab into issues of rendering, metadata, and licensing, while also running right through various font formats and cross-platform output-equivalence issues without stopping for a chat.
Font designers, web programmers, server specialists, standards organizations, applications developers, and psychologists swelled the ranks of great people who are now focused on issues like: networked, multi-platform, dynamic typography and layout; auto-hinting for rasterization across operating systems; and my ...
Earlier this year, Fortune magazine launched a new redesign featuring a new logo drawn by Cyrus Highsmith.
Just recently, Fortune’s creative director John Korpics came back to us to commission a special version of that logo to add some depth to the cover of Fortune’s annual investment issue. He was looking to capture some of the complexity and dimensionality of old banknotes, but without straying from the logo’s strong, contemporary look.
Cyrus had started some 3D sketches while designing the original logo, so I had a great place to jump off from. That meant I was left ...
December 21, 2010
Fonts In Use will catalog and examine real-world typography. From the editor: “So much of design critique is focused on graphics and photography. It’s time to shed light on the most basic element of communication: the type. At Fonts In Use we’ll catalog and examine real-world typography wherever it appears — branding, advertising, signage, packaging, publications, in print and online — with an emphasis on the typefaces used.” Read on...
December 21, 2010
R Crumb said he traded one of his sketchbooks for a house in the south of France. I haven't had offers like that for any of my sketchbooks but I was very proud to contribute a few pages to Graphic: Inside the Sketchbooks of the World's Great Graphic Designers by Steven Heller and Lita Talarico. I received a copy yesterday. I am impressed with the diverse selection of sketchbook pages from some very talented people including Laurie Rosenwald, Scott Stowell, and many others. It’s a great book. Also, please get in touch if you have a house ...
We continue onward to early 16th century France. French type design was influenced by the Italian Renaissance (especially the work of Aldus Manutius) but eventually evolved to have its own distinct character. Augereau was among the early founders to start the trend, while Garamont’s roman types became the best known. Jannon’s types are most infamous for being mistaken for Garamont’s in the 19th century. And Granjon elevated the French oldstyle forms to new levels of vitality.
From Font Bureau’s library there is Throhand, FB Garamond, and Meno, all designed taking reference from these type masters.
December 1, 2010
Letter space is the white space between the letters. It’s like a puzzle piece that holds them together.
Chapter II, fifth installment. Italy. Venice and Rome more specifically. We meet great writing masters, punchcutters, and printers in such names as Manutius, Griffo, Tagliente, Arrighi, and Blado.
II. Old Style Roman and Italic Typefaces (continued)
Aldus Manutius (Venetian, ca 1450-1515)
Francesco Griffo (Venetian, died ca 1517)
Ten years after Jenson’s death Aldus Manutius and his brilliant punchcutter, Francesco Griffo, moved to Venice, where they printed from 1495 until Aldus’ death twenty-five years later. He ran four presses, the first industrial printer. Griffo’s first roman type appeared in 1495 in Cardinal Bembo’s “De Aetna.” In 1532 this ...
Part 2: Readability, Affability, Authority
On the i love typography blog, William Berkson, designer of Williams Caslon Text, posts part two of Reviving Caslon. He begins, “When their words are put into print, writers want the text to be inviting and welcoming, so that readers will read what they have written. And they also want the text to have an aura of credibility, so it will be taken seriously and maybe even accepted.” Read more...
[read Part 1: The Snare of Authenticity]
November 4, 2010
A limited edition poster by Cyrus Highsmith.
Obama is a central focus in this midterm election. Candidates associate themselves with the President or oppose him. So I would have thought the visual identity choices would reflect this relationship. Not so much.