Typography

Font Men.

If you are a graphic designer working anywhere in the world today, you probably know who Jonathan Hoefler and Tobias Frere-Jones are. If you aren’t a graphic designer, you still know their work. Hoefler and Frere-Jones have created some of the most ubiquitous typefaces in use today. The mini documentary below was produced before the duo recently went their separate ways.

An official selection for the SXSW film festival, “Font Men”, takes a look at the world of Jonathan and Tobias. Tracking the history of their personal trajectories, sharing the forces that brought them together and giving an exclusive look at the successful empire they built together.

The Transport For London Campaign.

Transport For London has launched a new print campaign featuring the lettering design work of Alex Trochut. The ads feature bicycles that creatively merge the message with the bike itself using the frame to spell out words like “Easy’, “Ride”, “Safe”, “Direct”. The eye catching ads are visually clever with eye popping color and a direct message. I hope that someone at TFL was smart enough to actually have these bike frames built, and is planning on using them as part of an ambient campaign extension for the printed pieces.

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Made by Hand at Adams of Rye.

Back in the day, when I was in art school… I just made myself sound really old… anyway, I took quite a few printmaking classes. I was really into the process of Lithography and intaglio printmaking. There was a solid satisfaction in the creation process and the slowness in which an image was produced.

At one point I discovered letter press and I had an instant connection to it. In part it came from the fact that I was working part time as a designer and paste up artist to help pay for school. I think the connection between the typesetting component, and the printing process is what brought it all together for me.

The video below by Leo Cackett was produced for  for Wallpaper* magazine. It features Derek Stonham, and Ian Foster producing a wood type printed piece for the cover of the 2012 May issue of the magazine. At one point in the voice over by Foster, he talks about working with antique machinery and type. This is so true. The press is probably over 100 years old, as well as the wood type they are using. I love the fact that there is a dedicated group of people all over the world that are keeping this craft alive. It really rings true with me after spending 10 hours in front of a computer screen working in Photoshop and Illustrator.

Benson Script. Classy, Charming, Industrial.

I found font love this morning. I was looking for a modern script that would have good readability in a video/motion design project I am working on, and I found Benson Script, designed by Kyle Wayne Benson. Available in 2 styles, six weights, and 3 contrast levels, Benson provides solid readability at all point sizes, and the informal quality will make it easy to animate.

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I love that this font has a hand lettering quality to it while remaining clean crisp and legible, which is a must for something that will be moving and only be delivered on screen.

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“Modernism’s desire to fit all elements within geometric constraints and adhere to strong verticals has spread throughout type design, but has had little to do with the frills and ornaments of script. Cutting a script down to its bare bones has is an offensive idea to many—almost seeming insulting to its genre. Benson Script bridges that genre gap between frill and function. As a matter of genre Benson Script errs on the side of modernism, and adds flair as a last resort.”

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