"Although they have had remarkable longevity, the Trajan letterforms have not always been as hot as they are now. In fact, the last time they enjoyed such popularity was in the... first century." Includes Carol Twombly's recollection of designing the iconic modern typeface. (You've totally seen it.) [more inside]
"ON DARK evenings in late 1916, a frail 76-year-old man could often be seen shuffling furtively between The Dove, a pub in west London, and the green and gold turrets of Hammersmith Bridge. Passers-by paid no attention, for there was nothing about Thomas Cobden-Sanderson’s nightly walks to suggest that he was undertaking a peculiar and criminal act of destruction." The Economist's Christmas Edition tells the story of "the Fight Over the Doves": “No more graceful Roman letter has ever been cut and cast,” [more inside]
Typehunting. A very long page of very well curated snippets of lettering and typography on packages from decades ago.
Typeface based on sculpture becomes motorized sculpture. The (European) typeface Jigsaw, “which was inspired by sculpture,” finds a use in typesetting the names of donors to a (U.S.) regional arts council. “A motorized disk contains approximately 2,000 names.... Pushing an initial letter on the control panel allows the viewer to find a particular name. The disk rotates and stops at the requested letter and displays all the names corresponding to the requested letter by backlighting them with white LEDs.” (Gallery; Vimeo video.) [more inside]
The Lost Type Co-op is a collaboration between Tyler Galpin and Riley Cran. It was founded with the intention of providing unique and quality fonts based on a pay-what-you-want model. All designers get 100% of the donations their font receives.
You might expect a jokey April 1 press release announcing Comic Sans Pro is yet another seasonal prank. Yet here it is, as little as $35 per face or $120 for the whole family.
The new Egyptian régime blows its chance to legitimately use the Papyrus font. The Egyptian president’s official site (for standardistas: HTML 3.2 with no language declared!) squanders a chance at typographic symbolism, Typophile explains: “Unfortunately, they had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to legitimately use Papyrus and they blew it. Instead it’s Algerian.” (Type specimens: Papyrus; Algerian. Cf. Papyrus Watch [previously].)
The Museum of Modern Art announced this week it would induct 23 digital-era typefaces into its permanent collection (Times coverage). But what do the designers of these fonts look like? Pics or it didn’t happen: first set; second.
The Art of Hermann Zapf film "was produced in 1967 at Hallmark Cards in Kansas City and in my design studio in Dreieichenhain, Germany... After long discussions and the help of a lot of alcohol we started late in the night. I was sitting at a slanted glass table with a hot spotlight in my neck. Frank Robinson was lying on the floor with the camera ready for a frog-view shot. My task was to write beautiful letters with ink which dried as soon the pen touched the slippery surface of an astralon sheet." — Hermann Zapf
If you are a fan of the quirky type fonts of a pre-digital era, you may enjoy "the" project, a whimsical little romp through the graphic yesteryear brought to you by the hound of lettering. (via Mira y Calla)
Mefites love type foundries. Here are some more. Typeplus | Klim Type Foundry | Process Type Foundry | Typejockeys | Village | Darden Studio | Bold Monday | Hand Made Font | SMeltery | Reserves | righttype | OurType | Colophone Foundry
Fraktur mon amour: Ruud Linssen’s Book of War, Mortification and Love is a collection of “essays on voluntary suffering” that works as a specimen of the Fakir blackletter typeface issued by merry pranksters Underware. Bored already? Well, try this on for size: It’s “printed in the author’s blood.”
Typography of World Cup jerseys: In general, or just Italy’s. Or read an interview with Paul Barnes, who designed the faces for – yes – Italy and several other Puma-sponsored countries (Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Switzerland, Uruguay).
John Mayer gets some really bitchin’ typography. House Industries (last MeFi mention: 1999!) designs a limited-edition tour poster for the crooner who constantly steals the show on TMZ. “[U]ntil they come up with a JPEG format that makes metallics shimmer like a Solid Gold dancer’s outfit, there just isn’t a substitute for physically walking around a serigraph and watching the light bouncing off metallic and fluorescent inks.” [more inside]
Stelae for 7/7. The London 7/7 Memorial consists of “52 pillars (or ‘stelae’), cast in rough textured stainless steel, each representing one of the victims” of the 2005 terrorist bombing attack. Typographer Phil Baines (profile) explains the development of the rough-hewn yet “British” typeface, based on “the 19th-century, untutored signmakers’ sansserif you see on buildings around the city,” that is moulded into the living steel.
Stereotypes -- Derided by typophiles as crass, "ethnic type" has a revealing taxonomy and, surprisingly, serves a purpose.
The Ministry of Type is a weblog about type, typography, lettering, calligraphy and other related things. The FontFeed, from the folks at FontShop, is a daily dispatch of recommended fonts, typography techniques, and inspirational examples of digital type at work in the real world. [more inside]
Decodeunicode.org has a useful and full-featured search for the names and glyphs for those Unicode characters that display as a plain box full of despair. It is presented by the Department of Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Mainz. Roll the dice ⚅⚄ and try it out. [more inside]
Definitive guide to fonts on Mad Men. Mostly the fonts that didn’t exist during the time of the show. Not every single thing is “historically accurate,” apparently. [more inside]
Israeli designer Oded Ezer produces stunning works of experimental typography. He has been lauded for creating [PDF link]"...Hebrew characters that melt," but it is his more unconventional work that is truly breathtaking - made up of letters with vivacity and personality. He calls his gorgeously abstracted work "typo art," existing wholly neither in the space of art or typography, with hope that it might transcend language altogether. See his flickr stream for more sketches, works, and arresting typescapes.
So You Want to Create a Font (Part 1, Part 2). For something with a less presumptive title, there’s this, this, this, this, this, or even this, Eric Gill’s An Essay on Typography.
It’s easy to talk about Adrian Frutiger in the past tense, since his most influential fonts – Univers, Egyptienne, and the eponymous Frutiger – are all at least thirty years old. But he is still alive, and in the summer of 2006, as he was presented with the Society for Typographic Aficionados’ annual Typography Award, type designer Mark Simonson gave a presentation on how Frutiger [pdf, 18 MB] affected, and continues to affect, him and all others who benefit from good typography.
Not My Type - An office and its occupants, made entirely of typographic characters, create a theatre of emotion. View the separate animations (Flash) 1, 2, 3 and 4. Also, visit an article on the work's concept development and storyboarding process. And there's more via Google.
The Scourge of Arial. It has spread like a virus through the typographic landscape and illustrates the pervasiveness of Microsoft's influence in the world. Arial, however, has a rather dubious history and not much character. In fact, Arial is little more than a shameless impostor...
BitFontMaker - Create, edit, and save your own truetype pixel font via this web app.
Are you a typoholic? It starts so innocently. One day you're mildly interested in the difference between display and text typefaces. Soon you can distinguish between teardrop and beak terminals. Suddenly you're annoying everyone in the movie theater by yelling out the names of all the fonts used in the credits. What's so scary is that you never saw it coming. You, my friend, are a type freak.
a blog for typography junkies! i'm in heaven.
A bunch of display type hacks... who just happen to be the berries in my book. Ok, I'm a type geek, I admit it - and I've designed a couple of fonts myself... But the boys over at House Industries are without a doubt the hippest cats this side of a kerning table.