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typography

Notes on (Type) Camp: Around the World in 26 Letters

The first rule of Type Camp is, you do not talk about Type Camp. Oh wait, that’s Fight Club. What a relief, as we’re itching to tell you about what next year holds for the burgeoning series of immersive design workshops for those who like to debate kerning whilst scarfing gourmet s’mores. Type Camp kicks off later this month in Chennai, India, with a week of discussions, projects, handwritten Urdu newspapers, Tamil lettering, and coconut water. In April, it’s off to Toronto for a focus on script lettering and calligraphy (practice writing “Rob Ford” with a demonic flourish). A planned August installment will take the form of a “creative residential retreat” in California. And the band of nomadic type junkies heads to Ireland in September. Learn more and register here.

Now Read This: Lettering Large

lettering_largeWeary and wary of design clients’ constant calls to “make it bigger”? Immerse yourself in Lettering Large (Monacelli Press), in which Steven Heller and Mirko Ilic explore the outsized world of monumental typography. From a consideration of “extroverted type” and “typo-hypnotic messages” to letters that live large outdoors and those that balloon into objecthood, the book offers a giant dose of inspiration and a visually exhilarating reminder of why size matters.

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Scrabble Typography Returns for a Second Round

scrabble typography

Andrew Capener‘s fontastic version of Scrabble is back! The California designer set out to reinvent the beloved board game in a way that would excite people about typography. His concept was to replace the familiar bleached-wood, monofont letter tiles with rich walnut versions in a variety of typefaces. An additional design tweak: all of the game components would be magnetized, an innovation that anyone who has lost that lone “Z” or “K” can appreciate. A licensee of Hasbro is back on board with a second (limited) edition, which includes new fonts and Bauhaus-inspired game components.

Like this post? Then you’ll love LiquidTreat, a weekly newsletter designed to quench your creative thirst. Sip generously from past issues and subscribe here.

Creativity, Innovation Are Key at Communication Arts

CommunicationArtsCommunication Arts, a trade journal for visual communications, covers everything from graphic designers to photographers to advertising agencies. The subscription-only mag features in-depth profiles, tips on design trends, book reviews and more.

CA is approximately 80 percent freelance written, and it’s on the lookout for fresh new writers. So what are the editors looking for? Someone who will inspire:

“We want to improve the way our readers work and think, whether that means introducing a revolutionary technique with dozens of potential applications, challenging disparate disciplines to work together in new ways or refuting common wisdom about, say, what it means to be creative or successful,” said managing editor Robin Doyle. “If your article can do that, we want to see it.” CA editors are always on the lookout for stimulating content for “Columns,” “Profiles” and “Book Reviews.”

To hear more details about CA, including editors’ contact info, read: How To Pitch: Communication Arts.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

–Aneya Fernando

Freudian Font Is Based on Sigmund’s Scrawl

freud writing

Sometimes a font is just a font, except when it is based on the handwriting of Sigmund Freud. Harald Geisler turned his fascination with the famed psychoanalyst’s century-old letters into an elegant typeface. “It made me smile to imagine a person writing his or her shrink a letter set in Freud’s handwriting,” says the typopgrapher, who studied original documents in the archives of Sigmund Freud Museum Vienna and Freud Museum London to develop four alphabets that are interchanged at random. Don’t be surprised if the elegant letters show up in your dreams.

Like this post? Then you’ll love LiquidTreat, a weekly newsletter designed to quench your creative thirst. Sip generously from past issues and subscribe here.

Swiss Spritz! Helvetica the Perfume ‘Smells Like Nothing’

helvetica

Now that the literal feasting of Thanksgiving is over, the retail gluttony can begin. We have a feeling that you’re eschewing “doorbuster deals” in favor of web-surfing your way to elegant gifts (that don’t require resorting to fisticuffs or even leaving your home), but what do you get for the design-minded person who has everything? The answer, of course, is nothing—in the form of Helvetica the Perfume.

Technically, it is two ounces of distilled water, but to the typographically savvy, it is the olfactory equivalent of Max Miedlinger and Eduard Hoffmann‘s sans-serif marvel: pure, modern, neutral, and profoundly Swiss. Decanted into a glass bottle labeled in 24-karat gold Helevtica Bold and tucked into a letterpressed box, the limited-edition fragrance is yours for $62 from Guts & Glory.
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SVA Students Celebrate Halloween with Typographic Twist

sva pumpkins
(Photos: Cindy Davis)

As you put the finishing touches on your Zapf Dingbat Halloween costume (spooky!), feast your candy-craving eyes on the passel of pumpkins created by students at New York’s School of Visual Arts. Designer and faculty member Irina Lee, herself an SVA alum, gathered the group for a pumpkin-carving session with a typographic twist, from personal monograms and elaborate drop caps to the classic “BOO,” accented with the New York skyline.

sva pumpkins 2
(Photos from left: Maxwell Beucler, Elfe Marschall)

Hamilton Wood Type Museum Teams with Erik Spiekermann to Go Hard in New Home

hamilton
Strong and Silent Types. The new crew at the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum stands in front of a vintage photo of their predecessors.

hard_typefaceWisconsin’s Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum–the only museum dedicated to the preservation, study, production, and printing of wood type–recently moved into a new home in Two Rivers, and the race is on to reopening day. Helping to inaugurate the new space will be the museum’s annual Wayzgoose type conference, which gets underway November 8. Among the special guest speakers this year is the fontastic Erik Spiekermann, for whom a typographic tribute is in the works: Hamilton will be cutting the Spiekermann-designed font, “HARD” (pictured above), at the conference. “I’m excited to see Hamilton cut this font using traditional methods,” says Spiekermann. “With Hamilton’s vintage pantographs and former type-cutting employees, this will be a chance to see history in the remaking.”
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Wallpaper* Rolls out Redesign with New Tagline, Custom Typefaces

The September issues are beginning to roll in, and Wallpaper* is celebrating the month that Candy Pratts Price describes as “the January in fashion” with a top-to-bottom redesign across its print and digital platforms. The layouts have “a new, fresh, sophisticated, modern elegance” according to editor-in-chief Tony Chambers, and the pages, now printed on higher-quality stock, are sprinkled with custom typefaces (type families “Portrait” and “Darby,” pictured above and designed by Berton Hasebe and Dan Milne, respectively) from Paul Barnes and Christian Schwartz of Commercial Type. The magazine also has a new tagline–”The stuff that refines you”–and an overhauled iPad edition, reimagined by Nicolas Roope of Poke London and Marc Kremers, which ensures that the September features, on topics such as “the fashion world’s top ten go-to architects” (we’re looking at you, Pedro), the bags-to-riches story of Loewe, and Paul Smith, look just as vibrant on the screen as on the page.

Sign Painters Documentary Continues Screening Tour

Once upon a time, creating signage involved more than Microsoft Word, 72-point Comic Sans, and an inkjet printer. Everything from storefronts to street signs were hand-lettered—with brush and paint. But all is not lost. Even as staid (and quick-and-dirty DIY) signage proliferates, there’s a revival afoot in traditional sign painting. Dedicated practitioners get their close-up in Faythe Levine and Sam Macon‘s Sign Painters, published last fall by Princeton Architectural Press. But with a subject as scintillating as hand-lettered signage, why stop at a book? The anecdotal history of the craft and stories of sign painters working in cities throughout the United States comes to the big screen in a documentary that is now making the rounds (next up: screenings in Orlando, New York, and Seattle). The trailer is bound to inspire you to drop that die-cut vinyl lettering:

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