A panel discussion among design innovators about their design and use of type in today’s changing environment.
Saturday, November 9, 2019 2pm–4pm Type Directors Club 347 W 36th St., #603 New York, NY 10018
Typeface design and the implementation of typography has never been more exciting. In many cases, type is presented on monitors, tiny and huge electronic visual displays, i.e., screens. In collaboration with the Type Directors Club, Design Incubation will moderate a panel discussion among design innovators about their design and use of type in today’s changing environment.
Liz DeLuna St John’s University
Dan Wong New York City College of Technology, CUNY
Saturday, February 24, 2018 10:30AM–1:30PM Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography / Archetype Press South Raymond Avenue
Pasadena, California 91105
The Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography [HMCT] at ArtCenter College of Design was founded in 2015 in memory of Professor Leah Hoffmitz Milken, a well-known typographer, letterform designer and esteemed faculty member at ArtCenter. Archetype Press houses more than 2,500 cases of rare American and European foundry type, wood type, and ornaments.
Gloria Kondrup, Executive Director of Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography and Director of Archetype Press, will also be moderating a special program of typography research presentations during Affiliated Society Meeting: Design Incubation Special Program on Typography. For details visit the website announcement. All are welcome to attend these events. Please register in advance.
Monica Maccaux Assistant Professor
Graphic Design University of Nevada, Reno
When considering the multitudes of typeface choice on the market, how does one approach the challenge of designing a typeface that is different from the competition? With the abundance of typeface choices, why is there a need for yet another typeface to be designed? These are valid questions when approaching the creative process of typeface design. There is the potential for there to be as many typefaces as there are people in the world; meaning, the possibilities are endless in the personalities and function of typefaces, and have the potential to grow along with the population.
The typeface ‘Motorix’ solves the fatigue to a gluttonous font market by challenging the rules of form, beauty, and function all the while pushing the limits of what language looks like. The Latin (or Roman) alphabet, as it stands today, has undergone centuries of change and evolution which has resolved itself to current norms in letterform recognition. What will our letterforms look like in another couple of centuries? Will the letter ‘A’ still look the same? Will there be new letterforms added, or old ones removed? What can the letter ‘A’ look like? With the typeface ‘Motorix’, these questions were considered, along with how the expectation of aesthetics, and practicality drive the finished product.
Beauty and aesthetics aside, when approaching typeface design, one has to acknowledge that to design type, is to design language. As the designer of language, there are certain considerations that need to be made when formulating the letterforms: legibility, readability, beauty, form, versatility, and utility. It is no easy feat to design a typeface that is beautiful and practical, and has many applications (headlines, body copy, etc). But to design a typeface that confronts the notions of what beauty and practicality are, along with pushing the unspoken ‘rules’ of what language should look like, is something altogether different, and continues to be a modern-day challenge in typeface development.
National University of Ireland, Galway
Leon Butler Research Fellow National University of Ireland, Galway
All lettering uses modularity as the basis of form can be seen across different cultures such as the Roman order systems for construction numerical and Chinese types always adhering to a square grid structure. Johann Neudörffer the Elder the author of Fundament, [Becker, 2005], and credited with the development of a blackletter type ‘Fraktur’ which he released in copybooks for people to develop the calligraphic style. He also constructed full type systems using a square which provided the basis for each letter and was divided into ten equal parts allowing for a grid to be placed in his copybooks. While researching historical modular type systems a little know typeface ‘Fregio Mecano’ was identified, a modular typeface of Italian origin that dates to the 1920s. The designer of ‘Fregio Mecano’ is unknown but it features in The Encyclopedia of Type Faces by W. Turner Berry [Berry, 1990], alongside the typeface, Fregio Razional attributed to Giulio da Milano for Nebiolo, so it can be assumed that da Milano designed Fregio Mecano also. Using the original grid form of ‘Fregio Mecano’ as a basis, the twenty elements were created in various orientations and positions to construct the letterform. By investigating visual forms in upper and lowercase characters, it is hope to be able to draw insights around the use of vertical sections, curved joins, negative counters, and other comparative elements common across the forms. The system of typographic modularity was developed through simple graphical techniques, such as layering. Comparative insights were generated relating to various themes and visual characteristics that were common across each of the glyphs. A completed typeface – including numerals and punctuation, has now been constructed. This has allowed an exploration of how these modular elements combine to demonstrate how this practice-based method can help designers, students or educators build a modulator typeface from a fixed palette of visual elements. The arrangement of these elements can create various styles of type for use in different contexts or visual approaches.