Homage to William Morris
This was obviously a labour of love. An ornamental poster by hungarian designer, Boglárka Nádi. The type used has been customised from Black Swan by John Bomparte to be connected into the pattern-work.
Did you spot the birds and rabbits between the floral motifs?
I’m looking forward to my copy of Lagom magazine #1. Pretty much the whole team from 8 Faces magazine has been involved, including myself, Erik and of course Sam and Elliot Jay Stocks as editors.
Erik Spiekermann might have recently retired from running Edenspiekermann and FontShop, but his version of retirement is somewhat different to most sixty-seven year-olds: he’s decided to go back to his roots and has founded the letterpress workshop P98a in Berlin. In our debut issue, which will be available to buy on Wednesday 24th September, Erik shared some thoughts about his new venture. Here’s an excerpt:
Thirty years ago, the message and the medium were identical. You set letters into words by touching them. The body of a metal letter is an object that compositors can read, from left to right, albeit upside-down. In order to read it comfortably, however, the surface of that object is covered in ink and pressed against paper. That’s what we call printing. We still print today, although the process of converting data into little blobs of ink is all but invisible. The marks on paper show up as ‘printed’ letters and are perfectly readable, but there is no indication of what happened inside that printer. The substrate itself is not supposed to be noticed; it is just a receptacle for the message.
And why did return to printing now?
First and foremost this is an attempt to go back to where type and typography come from: an ingenious system of pre-fabricated elements that we assemble into words and pages.
Wise words, indeed. You can read the full piece in Lagom #1 (the photo above is our proof copy), and to get notified about the issue’s release, sign up to our newsletter.
This Frankenstein, book cover is right up my street and quite inspirational for the work I’m doing at the moment. It’s was design a few years ago by Maciej Ratajki, a designer based in Warsaw, Poland.
For me, everything works well together. The composition with triple use of the ‘n’, the play of scale with the author’s name and the ‘i’ nested within the large characters, and the blackletter typeface.
My only reservation is the detailed loop on the ‘a’ which is a little distracting when combined with the scale of smaller type. I’d have been tempted to redraw the top of it.
Spotted over on http://typeverything.com/
I spotted this fun motion graphic over on Herbert Frost’s blog, who translated the German calligraphy notes that I posted yesterday (thanks again Herbert!)
The above animation, by Al Boardman, is part of a longer 100 second film called ‘8 Great things to do in London’. The British designer’s blog is full of cool little animations, some for fun, some part of wider projects.
What is equally impressive is his achievements as a rock climber and mountaineer:
Al has summitted several previously unclimbed mountains. One of which is in Central Asia and, in an interview with the BBC, revealed that he was naming the peak after his grandmother. The rest of Al’s family are still waiting for him to make more first ascents and to name the peaks after them, which is awkward.
Psst…calligraphy class notes
To prepare for a move from London to Sydney, I’m going through my plan chest and book shelves, full typographic and lettering ephemera, and decide what stays and what comes with me (mostly with me it seems!). So you might an eclectic mix of photos over the coming days.
For those of you that were interested in Seb Lester’s recent guest post on calligraphy, I thought these might be useful. I was given these worksheets during the Calligraphy workshop with Andreas Frohloff, during Type London (Places 2011). I posted a couple of photos at the time of his class and wonderful antique pen collection, here & here.
The sheet is quite handy for referring to how the shapes of latin letters are constructed. They are of course in German, so if anyone fancies translating in the comments, go for it!
It’s surprising and a little exciting when you flick through Tumblr and see something you’ve designed. This recent musical ‘G’ was inspired by the Pouchée types. It needs a little more work and is part of a bigger design which I’m hoping to finish and then letterpress later this month. More to follow.
Musical ‘G’ by Jamie Clarke
A for Art
A logo for the Philadelphia Museum of Art has has been designed by Pentagram’s Paula Scher.
Aiming to put ‘art’ front and centre, it features a flexible initial A that can customised to show off the museum’s collection of 227,000 items. The Museum’s typeface Avenir is customized for the new configuration.
The identity overhaul coincides with the unveiling of plans for a renewal and expansion of the Museum by architect Frank Gehry.
Embrace the wobble
In this, the second of our guest posts, Ged Palmer, designer, letterer and burgeoning sign painter, reminds us of how wide the pool of inspirational lettering is…
Good typography is all about clean lines, smooth curves and harmony, right? Well, for the most part I subscribe to that philosophy whole-heartedly. I mean you only have to see Herman Zapf drawing curves to agree with that! Then again, these days I find myself more and more attracted to the weird and wonderful world of vernacular typography and lettering. I’m talking about the type of design that’s not made by designers: wonky signs, yard sale posters, janky tags and sketchy handwriting. Things that are made by hand are imperfect and that human quality is what gives it life, as Margaret Kilgallen once eloquently put.
So whilst we strive to make our work as beautiful and well polished as we can, let’s take a moment to embrace the wobbles, the drips, the busted-up, the forgotten and the downtrodden.
36 days of type
I noticed this open project over on Instagram recently, organised by Alejandro López Becerro. There’s a huge variety of characters to look through including just these 3D designs by Alejandro himself.
While the main letters were going up in April/May the project still seems quite active. Search on Instagram #36daysOfType and #36days_<glyph name>.