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For nearly three months last year, I drew some type every day. Let me say this first: I know there are many designers who draw more and better signalist typeface option I; who have sketchbooks filled with lovely letters and exciting experiments. So it felt like quite an experiment last year when I committed to drawing some type every single day, on paper, and posting a photo of the sketch to a dedicated Flickr set. I had been getting a bit frustrated in the months after finishing my first typeface, FF Ernestine.
Signalist typeface option TYPO submission was a narrow, tall, contrasted sans that was reasonably hard to draw, and I sweated over it for the better part signalist typeface option a week-end until I deemed it nice enough to show.
That was when I realized I wanted and needed to get deeper into practice, into the process. Indeed process, like craft, seems fairly obvious to honor in theory and principle, but harder to embrace in practice. It is in this crucial point that paper is friendlier to the creative process than the screen: It supports and renders vagueness, sketchiness, better than computers do. Thus one gradually progresses from general proportions to details.
This was an exercise in signalist typeface option, too. So I started drawing, and I drew every day. It asked for wide seriffed faces and compressed signalist typeface option serifs, but also such strange things as a monospaced upright signalist typeface option for TV subtitlesa wide light monoline serif with swashes but no ascendersor a grunge monospaced Helvetica as drawn by Gerard Unger.
Making sense of these turned out to be interesting. Usually I first made a quick, rough pencil sketch of the approximate structures and proportions, then started working with a pen as soon as I dared, sketching rough proportions and areas before filling in outlines and details.
I never quite lost my urge to add outlines prematurely, but doing this too soon invariably derailed the sketch. The learning curve was noticeable. A good month into the experiment, I tweeted: But my fearfulness of the physical process was evolving into thoughtfulness, my dread into respect. I learned to think about type in new ways, practiced looking at it differently. I learned to see the space between the letters as an inherent part of the design.
I tried lots of different pens and attempted mostly in vain to trim the Tipp-Ex brush just the right way. And I began to feel more free to take on new ideas and try them out on paper without over-thinking details right away.
I had finally stopped worrying so much, and I was making letters, every day. The decision to make drawing practice a daily exercise was a trick to make me stick with it. Keeping it up was a challenge sometimes, but it also brought beautiful opportunities, like drawing together with friends I happened to be visiting. In a similar way, publishing the work online was intended to up the signalist typeface option and confirm my commitment, but I also hoped it could trigger discourse that might prove helpful to me and maybe also inspiring to others.
Of course, if embracing sketchiness and vagueness on my desk was hard, sharing it publicly was really scary. My sketches are snapshots from a process, stills from a learning curve. The project ended about as spontaneously as it began.
After almost three months of daily drawing, and quite a bit of welcome input and exchange, I went on a vacation with a barely functional internet connection and the desire to disconnect from my routine for a bit.
I look back fondly. Every day, if you have to. Try doing it loosely, looking beyond your own preferences, and resisting the signalist typeface option of polish. Instead, they subscribe to a Creative Cloud membership and get access to the apps through an online account. Along with this signalist typeface option came the news that Typekit signalist typeface option be included in the Creative Cloud product.
This move was widely expected — once Adobe acquired Typekit in we all knew that they would use the fonts to add value to their core software, but just how they were going to do that was less clear. This includes all desktop apps, not just those from Adobe. For many font users, these services are a godsend. Creating websites without signalist typeface option access to webfonts is a major hurdle for designers who rely on apps like Photoshop for signalist typeface option.
Some providers offer workarounds: OurType fonts are licensed once and can signalist typeface option used in print or on the web; FontFont bundles their downloadable webfonts with free but limited desktop versions. But Creative Cloud and Skyfonts gives users signalist typeface option to an entire library of fonts, not the individual fonts of traditional sales.
For font makers, these developments raise all sorts of questions. Equating the music and font industries is rife with pitfalls, but the parallels here are too conspicuous to ignore.
A few years ago, people bought albums — now they stream songs from a music service. If the font market is headed down the same path, I wonder:. Will easy access to desktop fonts increase piracy? While Creative Cloud and Skyfonts obfuscate the temporarily installed fonts in some way, there is signalist typeface option the concern that users will find a way to hack the system or otherwise use the fonts outside the license. I feel the same way about this as I do the silly old debate about PDF embedding permissions: Fighting font theft is a losing battle.
Those who steal fonts will always find easier ways to steal them. Those who focus on making their fonts easy to license and use earn the good will of the market. Will library subscriptions lessen the perceived value of type? Cheap access to a vast library of more professional fonts will only add fuel to that fire.
Mark Simonson, for one, is not worried: What I hear from other participating type designers is that Typekit revenue represents ed a very small fraction of their sales.
As Frode Bo Helland says: Which leads me to my final question. Will other professional foundries join these libraries? After som hard work we finally got a mag shipped to Sweden so we could take some photos. They make graphic design for print and web, and have their own digital-to-letterpress project.
Their Henriette is a case in point. I like it when designers do serious research regarding their source material as opposed signalist typeface option quickly scanning a specimen they like and begin fontifying ; and here, thorough research took place indeed.
Signalist typeface option story of the Viennese street sign alphabet and its many incarnations is told in English on the Typejockeys website ; no use repeating it here. The main outcome of it was that, as there had been so many variations on the anonymous early alphabet, done by so many companies for various production techniques, Hochleitner felt free to improvise, no strings attached. The original alphabet signalist typeface option in two distinct versions, for short and long street names — the one a kind of Heavy or ExtraBold, the signalist typeface option Bold Condensed.
Developing a family with a broad range of widths, as Hochleitner did, is tricky: Needless to say, the character set and language coverage are flawless.
When December rolls around and I ask a signalist typeface option of smart, articulate font users and makers to each select their favorite release of the year, not everyone rushes back with signalist typeface option pick. Some years are stronger than others. I got so many signalist typeface option this time around, many with texts that were longer and more in-depth than ever before, that I admittedly fell behind in the editing and production of the list.
Indra Kupferschmid on Stanwith history signalist typeface option the unusual designs that inspired it. Florian Hardwig, who offers not only praise, but a bit of critique for Axia. Shoko Mugikura and Tim Ahrens on the complex beauty of Quintet. The most obvious example of lasting change is signalist typeface option type for the web. Professional webfonts were available in — primarily via services hosting previously released font families — but buyers can now expect most new fonts to be issued in both desktop and web formats.
Unfortunately, mobile publishing is still left behind, as phone and tablet developers struggle to find clear licensing options for embedding fonts in apps. While there are some exceptionsmost buyers still need to contact foundries for this kind of license. Look for this to evolve in The independent foundry has also cemented its place as the new foundation of the industry.
In some cases they have eschewed outside distribution altogether. Stylistically, no single classification or genre dominated the selections this year. This is a good thing. It indicates that me-too-ism is limited and that designers are open to a variety of styles.
Speaking of Fonts In Usewe are now adding links to that site from Typographica reviews, so you can see how the typefaces perform in the real world. There are plenty of open questions about how fonts are marketed these days, but I am very optimistic about the proficiency and creativity of type design as a whole. Thanks to Chris Hamamoto for his continual design and signalist typeface option prowess. There was a correct way to draw such letters: Simple skeletons with a minimum of style.
When they were freshly signalist typeface option, they probably did look very plain. But lack of style is an illusion. Tastes change and, as time passes, what was once seen as neutral becomes pegged to a particular moment in time and takes on the patina of history. Its wide proportions and signalist typeface option spacing would make it a good choice for small sizes. The caps remind me of American faces like Sackers Gothic signalist typeface option Copperplate Gothicbut the lowercase letters have more of a European feel, reminiscent of the typefaces of Jakob Erbar and the tiny lettering on old cameras and watches.
With the inclusion of useful features like small caps, dingbats, and different signalist typeface option styles, it looks like it would be fun font family to use. Trio Grotesk makes me wish I were still an art director. Joe Kral also maintains a collection of Penguin and Pelican covers on Flickr.