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JUST MY TYPE [FOR THE TYPOGRAPHY LOVERS]

WINTER 2016 / ISSUE 01


CONTENTS 01

Everyday Type 6 Why Hand-Lettering is Making a Comeback 10 Type in Film 18 Tats and Type 20 The Revival of Hand-Painted Signs


03

02

Resources 38 Free Fonts that Don’t Suck 40 Designers with Go-to Typefaces 46 #Typography

History & Culture 26 Quick History Behind The Ampersand 28 Today’s Top 5 Best Typographers 35 Reducing Noise in Arabic Script


ABCDEFG HisWHAT Itypography? JKLMN OWHY PQRSTU does it matter? VWXYZ12 HOW 3 does 45 6 7 8 9 > it impact our lives? !@/;’*?&:’ 4 Just My Type


G N U 2 > ’{

Letter from

the Editor

The Merriam-Webster definition of “typography” is: “the work of producing printed pages from written material” or “the style, arrangement, or appearance of printed letters on a page.” How those letters, words, and sentences are styled and arranged affects how they are perceived. Good typography clarifies content, establishes hierarchy, and presents information in a manner that makes it easier to read, and, therefore, to understand. Typography is also intertwined with our daily lives—we encounter type in everything from the products we buy, the signage around us, the books we read, the news we consume, and the directions we follow. Typography can be beautiful, functional, persuasive, and inviting. It can also fail, especially when there is a disconnect between how the type looks and what the text says. This debut issue of Just My Type was conceptualized and created by students in Art 338: Typography II at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo during winter quarter 2016. Students selected all topics included in this issue and the content ranges from the current hand-lettering revival, to lettering in tattoos, to the challenges of creating an Arabic script font, to type in popular film posters. The eclectic nature of this content reflects the diverse interests of the students in the class and the many ways in which we encounter typography in the everyday.

Charmaine Martinez

March 2016 5


[ Everyday Type ]

Why Hand Lettering is

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Making a Comeback Now that digital has largely taken over the world’s communications, cursive is nearly obsolete in schools, and putting pen to paper is a rare experience for a large part of the planet—so, what hope does handwriting have? In a world created by coding, can beautiful letters made by hand still have their place?

Cristina Vanko, a designer and art director at Y&R Chicago, believes hand lettering is still relevant, and in-fact, is even making a comeback, which she beautifully describes and teaches in her new book Hand-Lettering For Everyone: A Creative Workbook published last week by Perigee Trade/Penguin Random House. “From the best modern book covers out there, to your favorite local restaurant menus, to a priceless form of personalized self-expression, the beauty of writing by hand reminds us just how alive words and letters can be,” said Vanko.

Photo by Cristina Vanko

Hand-Lettering for Everyone is a creative, interactive workbook aimed to teach everyone (and anyone) hand-lettering. “Trust me, it’s possible,” Vanko said. “It’s full of informative bits, inspiration, pep talks, and fun lettering exercises. This book opens readers up to the myriad ways to apply newfound lettering skills and boosts confidence along the way.” The book covers typography and hand-lettering basics, the art of “sketchploration”, fearless

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[ Everyday Type ]

self-expression through playfulness, creative process tips, inspiring advice from top illustrators, and inspiration for adding personal touches to any kind of hand-lettered text. The book, Vanko says, is full of creative prompts to take your hand-lettering for a test drive.

“In advertising, hand-lettering can be a different way to bring messages to life.” “In advertising, hand-lettering can be a different way to bring messages to life,” she said. “We’re a tech savvy culture, and wegrown so accustomed to type in print and on screen—and now, even emojis! Today, using your hands to create is considered a novelty. With hand-lettering, the letters itself are a piece of art. The formation of each letter is formed differently from letter to letter and crafted carefully to bring brand’s meaning to life through lettering.” With Hand-Lettering for Everyone, Vanko begins with an approachable brief overview of the history of type and design and its fundamentals. Surprisingly enough, this is something that a lot of published books leave out. Vanko believes readers should have a basic understanding of typography, type anatomy, design, and layout before jumping into lettering. “Most importantly, having this bit of background knowledge helps readers make the most of their newfound lettering skills,” Vanko said. 8 Just My Type

Vanko’s book isn’t her first foray into the seemingly lost art of hand-lettering, she conducted a social experiment in 2013 she dubbed Modern Day Snail Mail. For one week, Vanko created handwritten text messages (no using the keyboard on her phone to send a message) and would write out her reply message on paper and then text back a photo of her message. Vanko’s project received notable media attention that ultimately led to her doing a TEDx talk hosted by the University of Chicago the following year. “Brand to brand, hand-lettering is able to touch on a range of emotional feelings,” Vanko said. “From the organic lines and gritty textures that make up fresh, homemade, and local looks to the swashy, painterly strokes that could make up a badass ad, hand-lettering is a great way to personify your client’s brand by using hand-lettered type that speaks for itself.”


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[ Everyday Type ]

Type & Film

Captivating Uses of Typography in Movies

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Psycho (1960) Unique, created by Tony Palladino Posters for Alfred Hickhcock’s best-known movies often—if not always, use original artwork and lettering, with the Hollywood master often partnering with his designer equivalent Saul Bass to create artistic masterpieces that are often as appreciated as the films themselves. Psycho, however, is an exception; while the typeface is unique, it was actually created by Tony Palladino for the original 1959 novel by Robert Bloch from which the quintessential thriller was adapted. In its 2014 obituary for Palladino, the New York Times writes, “Mr. Palladino said the design—stark white letters torn and seemingly pasted together against a black background to resemble a ransom note, was intended to illustrate typographically the homicidal madness of the novel’s protagonist, Norman Bates.”

Star Wars (1977) Helvetica Black, created in 1957 by Max Meidinger Ah, the “invisible typeface” Helvetica Black once again, except this time its use comes rife with controversy. According to Suzy Rice, who would design the first iteration of the now unmistakable stacked Star Wars logo, George Lucas said that he wanted the titling to appear “very fascist” and “very intimidating.” To Rice, the obvious choice was Helvetica Black, thanks to a book about German typography that she was reading the night before the meeting.

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[ Everyday Type ]

Apparently, the book established Helvetica Black as the inevitable evolutionary product of a typeface design that Joseph Goebbels had ordered to represent the German Nationalist party on all of its signage. “To state the obvious—contrary to bizarre gossip as if I’d stated otherwise, Helvetica wasn’t used by Goebbels nor was Miedinger, to my knowledge, associated with Goebbels,” Rice clarifies, “Meidinger’s ‘Helvetica’ came much later but was described in this book I’d been reading as somewhat similar visually to that earlier signage.” With its history and stylistic severity, Rice felt Helvetica Black fit Lucas’ need for an “intimidatingly fascist” design and used it to influence her eventually hand-drawn lettering. The final masthead is a revised version of Rice’s original design, with concept artist Joe Johnston modifying the “W,” widening the letters, and increasing spacing throughout in order to accommodate the pan shot that was planned for the opening credits.

The opening credits for Star Wars is possibly one of the most iconic sequences. It had such an impact on George Lucas he used it on every Star Wars movie. Switching the perspective of the text becomes really engaging—especially with the amount of copy displayed. It is News Gothic for the episode number and main body of the text, and Univers for the title of the film.

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Catch Me If You Can (2002) Archive Antique Extended An illustrative sequence from design studio Nexus Productions, the style can easily compared to the work of Saul Bass. Two different types of typefaces are used throughout, they compliment the illustration and tall walking characters. We open with the a sans-serif called “Coolvetica”, the tails shoot off the screen throughout. We are then introduced to a wide slab-serif called “Archive Antique Extended”.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) Futura (Extra Bold), created in 1927 by Paul Renner Stanley Kubrick is well-documented as a fan and frequent user of Futura, though to what true extent has been up for debate. He uses the typeface in promotional materials (including either posters or trailers, but not necessarily both) for six out of thirteen of his major motion pictures, most notably in posters for 2001: A Space Odyssey and Eyes Wide Shut. He’s not alone in his love for the clean, modernist lettering; Wes Anderson has used Futura in every one of his films, and it marks some of the bestknown brands in the world, including IKEA, Crayola, Louis Vuitton, and Volkswagen. March 2016 13


[ Everyday Type ]

In a bit of life imitating art, Futura is given the honor of gracing Apollo 11’s dedication plaque to man’s first steps on the moon in 1969, just a little over a year after Kubrick released 2001: A Space Odyssey. While this coincidence is probably simply due to the popularity of the typeface, Futura was invented by Paul Renner with innovation in mind; known for its geometric simplicity, utmost functionality, and balanced weight.

Back to the Future (1985) Unique, created for the film by Andrew Probert The lettering for the Back to the Future title was one of many accomplishments credited to Andrew Probert, who also developed the film’s storyboards and finalized the design for the movie’s most important feature: that sweet time-traveling Delorean. The logo was initially used as the titling for Back to the Future’s one-sheet, and was later added to Drew Struzan's poster artwork. The lettering was later developed into a typeface aptly called “Time Travel” by David Occhino, who was thoughtful enough to include both “Forward” and “Back” styles to “convey action and momentum with an '80s flair.”

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Alien (1979) Helvetica Black, created in 1957 by Max Meidinger Helvetica is known as “the invisible typeface” due to its neutral nature and abundance in use. Meidinger set out to create a typeface that “had great clarity, no intrinsic meaning in its form, and could be used on a wide variety of signage.” Often incorrectly attributed to prolific graphic designer Bill Gold, the theatrical poster was actually designed by Steve Frankfurt and Philip Gips of Bemis Balkind (to Gold’s credit, he did design a concept poster for the film that was ultimately rejected). The design firm adopted the lettering from Richard Greenberg’s title sequence for the film, which brilliantly used the structure of the typeface to build the ominous mood of the film. “Steve Frankfurt once said to me that sound is 50% of a film and I agree with that. So we abstracted the idea of the off-putting sound but in a typographic way,” Greenberg explained in an interview with Art of the Title. “We wanted to set up tension and as these little bits come in, they seem very mechanical. When the bits finally resolve into a word, I think people weren’t prepared to read it as a title because of the spacing.”

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[ Everyday Type ]

Pulp Fiction (1994) Aachen bold Invented in response to the advertising exposion in the 1960’s and its need for large-format typefaces, Aachen bold is a slab font reminiscent of the ink-stamped “Wanted” posters from the century’s prospecting towns. Pulp Fiction is, in essence, an homage to the genre, and Juan Vinueza followed that thematic trajectory when designing the film’s poster by basing it off the style of vintage pulp novels. “Typography,” Vinueza says, “follows the poster’s aesthetics. It’s retro, but it’s kitsch as well. It’s very difficult to make adaptations in modern, retro-themed posters. You make a tribute to the past, yes, but you have to catch contemporary audiences with it.”

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Jurrasic Park (1993) Neuland, created in 1923 by Rudolf Koch The typography used for Jurrasic Park was actually not chosen for the poster, but originally selected as part of the logo designed by Sandra Collora for the dinosaur theme park itself. In a 2011 article for Fast Company, Simon Garfield, author of Just My Type: A Book About Fonts, put Neuland on his list of “8 Worst Fonts in the World,” saying that the typeface, along with Papyrus, is “classifiable as a theme park font, more comfortable on the big rides at Universal Studios, Busch Gardens or Alton Towers than they are on the page.” In other words, perfect for Jurassic Park.

Moonrise Kingdom (2012) Tilda Wild Tilda is a script typeface designed by Jessica Hische for use in the Wes Anderson movie Moonrise Kingdom. It was published as a commercial font through Font Bureau in 2014. The design was inspired by titles from the 1969 film La Femme Infidéle.

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Tats & Type

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“The tattoo is about my father, and it means that I accept him and forgive. The font is Angiecourt; I did the sizing and spacing on my computer and brought it to the artist.”

“This is the last line of philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. The translation is ‘What we cannot speak about we must pass over in silence.’ It is tattooed in Helvetica Neue Bold Condensed.”

“I have had a lifelong obsession with Mr. T and there is also a secondary meaning, a kind of pun: piti-ful.”

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[ Everyday Type ]

The Revival of Ame Hand-Painted Sign By Ester Bloom

Small businesses are increasingly relying on visual artists to convey tha

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Even in an age of emoji, when people revel in communicating online using a shared set of colorful icons, it makes sense that there are still those who are able to eke out a living painting signs for businesses by hand. Indeed, an art form that seemed moribund as big-box stores and chain restaurants multiplied is relevant again, and lucrative. And although much has changed about the enterprise itself, the essentials remain largely the same.

erica’s n Industry

at their products aren’t mainstream

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[ Everyday Type ]

“People want [their small businesses] to be individual, to stand out,” explains Jeffrey Sincich of J&S Signs. He and his partner Josh Stover, both originally from Florida, now run their business out of Portland, Oregon. “There’s a boom right now.” Hand-painted is popular,” he says. A hand-painted sign suggests that a store has a personality, that its products aren’t mainstream or mass produced. Appropriately, the pricing structure for signs can be as variable as the signs themselves. Some artists charge by the project and others by the hour, and one sign can cost anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars. An industry pricing guide helps set and maintain baseline standards. 22 Just My Type

Most small businesses turn to local artists, since work often has to be done on-site and sending large or delicate items through the mail can be dicey. Still, “there are tons of communities that could support this,” says the visual artist Stephen Smolinski, who is encouraged by the success he and his compatriots have found in Goshen, Indiana, and who is segueing from making signs part-time to full-time. “Lots of creatives starting businesses look to other creatives,” he says. Some chains have adopted the practice, too, because it can make them seem folksy and independent. The grocery store Trader Joe’s has, despite nearly $10 billion in annual revenue in the U.S. alone, maintained its decidedly


ly non-corporate vibe in part by putting up hand-painted signs in its stores. Ashton Ludden, a visual artist, works for the Trader Joe’s in Knoxville full-time, illustrating everything from whimsical murals on the walls to descriptions of dry goods on the shelves. “Some stores have a team of six artists,” Ludden says. “We have one and a half—me and another girl.” Though she doesn’t own anything she makes, she is proud: “It’s a neat experience to be anonymous. Even the customers don’t know.”

“There’s a boom right now. Hand-painted is popular.” Making signs for Trader Joe’s works well for Ludden, as it gives her a steady income and health care. And, when Ludden’s workday ends, she is free to focus on independent projects. “When you clock out, done,” she says. “Work does not travel home.” Other sizable entities employ sign painters, too, from Hollywood, which often requires a specific look for its period movie sets, to the theme park Dollywood, which has hired artists to help maintain its old-timey feel for three decades now. Disney retains a team of sign painters to set the tone of some attractions in its amusement parks. But much of an average sign painter’s livelihood comes from smaller clients, like local movie theaters, ad agencies, and restaurants. Shelby Rodeffer, who is originally from the March 2016 23


[ Everyday Type ]

state of Tennessee, but now works full-time in Chicago, says the country’s renewed enthusiasm for unique, hand-painted signs is based primarily on young consumers’ Etsy type enthusiasmfor distinctiveness and character and has flourished via social media. Indeed, the sign-painters I spoke to credited Instagram with helping them build their personal brand and style. “Forty years ago, you couldn’t be a renegade. The field required lots of tutelage,” Josh Stover says. “We’re all just picking up our tools and going for it.” He recalls that when he approached a member of the old guard to ask if he had any advice about joining the profession, the man said, “Yeah, Don’t do it.”

That ability, to make a living doing something they love, has made this generation of sign-makers optimistic. Sincich and Stover say that, based on current conditions, they “don’t see how they wouldn’t be able to make a living.” Livermore, who also teaches workshops in the basics of lettering by hand, is confident that as long as there is capitalism, “there will always be a market for signage.” Rodeffer concurs, citing a saying popular in the field: “A business with no sign is the sign of no business.”

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Photo by Best Dressed Signs

“I considered it, but I was already getting work,” says the artist BT Livermore of Minnesota and now Portland. Other sign painters hadn’t heard of the school’s program at all. Most of them have Bachelor’s degrees as well as Master’s or MFA, so they wondered why they should take out more loans when they can simply prove themselves through their output and still get enough clients to make a living.


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& [ History & Culture ]

Quick History Behind The Ampersand

By Cameron Chapman

The ampersand can be traced back to the first century AD. It was originally a ligature of the letters E and T (“et” is Latin for “and”).

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&

The first ampersands looked very much like the separate E and T combined, but as type developed over the next few centuries, it eventually became more stylized and less representative of its origins. You can see the evolution of the ampersand below (1 is like the original Roman ligature, 2 and 3 are from the fourth century, and 4-6 are from the ninth century). The modern ampersand has remained largely unchanged from the Carolignian ampersands developed in the ninth century.

which was what the alphabet ended with when recited in English-speaking schools. (Historically, “and per se” preceded any letter which was also a word in the alphabet, such as “I” or “A”. And the ampersand symbol was originally the last character in the alphabet.) The ampersand is a part of every roman font. It’s used in modern text often, probably most frequently in the names of corportions and other businesses, or in other formal titles (such as Dungeons & Dragons).

Italic ampersands were a later ligature of E and T, and are also present in modern fonts. These were developed as part of cursive scripts that were developed during the Renaissance. They are more formal-looking and fancier than the standard Carolignian ampersand. The word “ampersand” was first added to dictionaries in 1837. The word was created as a slurred form of “and, per se and”,

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[ History & Culture ]

TODAY’S TOP 5 BEST TYPOGRAPHERS By Katie Metcalfe

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Photo by Dana Tanamachi

A quick look at the lives and artwork behind today’s voted best typographers.


1

Jessica Hische I grew up in Pennsylvania, raised by two non-creatives that decided it would be okay to let their little girl pursue a seemingly impractical career. I ended up attending a wonderful art school thanks to an amazing high school teacher and an admissions counselor that took a chance on my under-developed portfolio. Though I fell in love with every artistic discipline Freshman and Sophomore year, I declared as a Graphic Design major when I found myself procrastinating on painting projects to work on posters and identities. In 2006, I graduated and landed a job as a freelance designer for a little studio in Philadelphia where I help-ed design fancy books and re-affirmed my passion for illustration and image-making. By winter, unsure if they wanted to take on another full-time employee, my hours were cut and I put together an illustration promo to get freelance work. That promo ended up landing me an illustration rep and a job for one of my heroes; I migrated to Brooklyn to work for her. After two and a half years of very little sleep and a lot of lettering, freelance work began overwhelming my life and my desire to do side projects became too much to bear.

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[ History & Culture ]

I’ve been on my own as a letterer, illustrator, type designer, and relentless procrastinator since 2009 and have worked for (and continue to work for) a lot of wonderful clients like Wes Anderson and Penguin Books. I’ve shared studios with amazing people including the folks over at Studiomates and of course my beloved Pencil Factory, where I continue to spend time on return trips to Brooklyn. I split my days (not evenly enough) between Brooklyn and San Francisco—the place I now call home and where I’ve set up a collaborative studio and workshop space with my brother from another mother, Erik Marinovich. When I’m not manipulating Beziers or working on fun projects, you can find me at the airport en route to a speaking engagement. I love what I do for a living and try as hard as I can to help others find a way to do what they love.

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2

Tobias Saul

Tobias Saul, born in 1990, is a lettering artist and graphic designer from D端sseldorf, Germany. From an early age, he dealt with graffiti and illustration, which made it easy for him to develop a feeling for letters. During his study of communication design, he got inspired by other hand lettering artists and quickly developed a great passion for this special symbiosis of lettering and illustration. His major fields include logo, branding and packaging design. Just like in old times, all of his works begin with pen and paper and get digitalized later to put the finishing touches.

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[ History & Culture ]

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Dana Tanamachi Dana Tanamachi is a lettering artist and designer who enjoys living a quiet life and working with her hands. In 2009, an impromptu chalk installation for a Brooklyn housewarming party landed Dana her first commission for Google and set the popular chalk-lettering trend—and her career, in motion. After working under design icon Louise Fili, she opened Tanamachi Studio, a boutique design studio specializing in custom typography and illustration for editorial, lifestyle, food, and fashion brands. She has been commissioned globally by clients such as Nike, USPS, Penguin Books, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, and West ElmNamed a Young Gun (YG9) by the Art Director’s Club in 2011 and a Young Creative to Watch by HOW Magazine, she has had the distinct honor of creating custom cover art for O, HOW, and TIME Magazines. In 2015 she relocated from Brooklyn to Seattle and debuted Tanamachi Goods, a line of beautifully hand-drawn print and gift products reflecting her personal aesthetic and featuring mediums beyond chalk.


4

Craig Ward Craig Ward is a British born designer and art director currently based in New York. Occasional artist, sometime author and contributor to several industry journals, he is known primarily for his typographic works. This website represents a selection of his output since his graduation in 2003. His awards, amongst other agency credits, include ADC Young Gun (2008), recipient of the Type Directors Club Certificate of Typographic Excellence (2009, 2014) and the Communication Arts Award of Excellence (2014, 2015). A regular public speaker (Adobe Creative Max, Los Angeles; TEDx, Philadelphia; OFFF Festival, Paris; AIGA, New York and many others), his work has also been shown, awarded and documented in countless books, magazines and exhibitions in cities such as Paris, New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Now in its second edition and published in January of 2012, his first book, Popular Lies About Graphic Design immediately became an Amazon best seller. It has since been translated into German, Spanish and Chinese.

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[ History & Culture ]

Alex Trochut Alex Trochut was born in 1981 in Barcelona, Spain. After completing his studies at Elisava Escola Superior de Disseny, Alex established his own design studio in Barcelona before relocating to New York City. Through his design, illustration and typographic practice he has developed an intuitive way of working that has resulted in his insane visual style. For Alex, typography functions on two hierarchical levels. First, there is the image of the word we see; reading comes secondary. As a designer, Alex focuses on the potential of language as a visual medium, pushing language to its limits so that seeing and reading become the same action and text and image become one unified expression. Mixing styles and genres and drawing equally from pop culture, street culture, fashion and music, Alex has created design, illustration and typography for a diverse range of clients: Nike, Adidas, The Rolling Stones, Katy Perry, BBC, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, The Guardian, The New York Times, Time Magazine and many others. Alex’s work has been internationally recognized, appearing in in exhibitions and publications worldwide. Alex currently lives and works in Brooklyn.

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Harir:

Reducing Noise in Arabic Script

Our daily lives are full of noise, but when we immerse ourselves in reading, it seems to disappear. What if the shapes of the words we read also contain perceptible noise? Does it disrupt the reading process, or do we learn to filter it out?

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[ History & Culture ]

When I was in elementary school I really didn’t like conventional Persian typefaces. They seemed very noisy with their inelegant spacing and lack of even minimal kerning. Mechanical typesetting systems had proved to be ill-suited to reproducing the graceful, historic shapes created by calligraphers, who had far more flexibility in drawing and combining letters. These letters were directly transferred to digital typesetting systems as well, with the result that a whole nation had to adapt to a new type of writing system that was aesthetically inferior to and less readable than traditional handwriting.

Negative Space in Persian Calligraphy The beauty of Persian calligraphy lies in a complex system that developed over centuries, finally culminating in the Nasta’liq style. It includes principles that govern not only how letters and words combine, but how negative space is managed to produce consistent text lines and consistent text colour throughout those lines. For example, the principle of Khalvat va Jalvat (Persian for “expansion and contraction”) governs the position of individual letter combinations to distribute the negative space throughout the lines so every word has the same grey.

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This is similar to letter spacing and kerning in roman scripts, but much more complex because the heights of individual connections change dynamically to harmonise the negative space around the letter fusions. Another important principle, Savad va Bayaz (“white and black”), governs how letters and letter combinations should be shaped to produce an even pattern throughout the text; it deals with the proportions of letters and the relationship between the black space of the letters and the white space of the counters. Thus far, digital emulation of all these parameters has proven impossible or impractical, and although some digital Nasta’liq systems are available today, none even comes close to fully emulating the complex balance of handwritten script. Another important feature of Persian calligraphy related to the management of negative space is the use of diacritics. Naskh, the calligraphic style from which most Arabic and Persian typefaces are derived, was created for writing long passages of the holy Qur’an, and its design incorporates diacritics, which not only avoid ambiguity when reciting the text, but also shape the negative space around the words.


When Naskh letters were adapted for mechanical typesetting they were stripped of their diacritics, but the design of the letters remained unchanged, violating the principle of Savad va Bayaz and unbalancing the negative space. On the other hand, using diacritics is no panacea, as demonstrated by the countless inscriptions with awkward diacritic placement. Furthermore, Nasta’liq is largely written without diacritics, managing negative space either by defining it with an abrak (Persian for “tiny cloud”) or by slanting the baseline to allow letter combinations to stack and better fill the space.

Redesigning the White Space Computer typesetting and the limitations of the OpenType system impose multiple compromises on Arabic typefaces. In fact, using OpenType to create a conventional Arabic text typeface with balanced white space is nearly impossible due to the fact that the correct positioning of the dots is determined by the word shapes, not the letter.

Sketches and the Design Process Generally, the structure of Harir is based on Arabic/Persian typefaces like Nazanin and Mitra. (I can’t overemphasize how much the works of Tim Holloway have been an inspiration for me.) I based the calligraphic elements on the Nasta’liq and Naskh styles, drawing occasionally on Thuluth calligraphy as well. The stroke cuts are angled, and the beginnings and ends have the same angle. After I finished the design I noticed that the letterforms had also been influenced by contemporary automobile designs.

“Harir is designed to make text reading smoother and more pleasant experience on screen and print.” Furthermore, elements of the letter shapes (such as the horizontal position of the baseline and the structures of the connections between letters) are also dynamic, tied tothe shape of each word and the surrounding words as well. Thus redesigning the letters to make the white space beautiful presents a significant challenge.

Early versions of Harir used a straight baseline, but I eventually switched to a curved baseline, which is more elegant and more typical for handwritten text (especially in Persian culture). Harir is not merely a technological solution, Harir is designed to make text reading a smoother and more pleasant experience on screen and in print.

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[ Resources ]

FREE FONTS TH Butler Butler is a free serif typeface inspired by a mix between both Dala Floda & the amazing Bodoni family. The main goal was to bring a bit of modernism to serif fonts by working on the curves of classical serif fonts and adding an extra stencil family. Great for posters and very big titles.

Edmondsans Edmondsans is hard-working display face in three weights, featuring some useful niceties like small caps, non-lining figures, and a few alternates.

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HAT DON’T SUCK

i r

Mission Gothic Mission Gothic is a relic; a ghost from an era where letters were hand-painted on wood and glass. Made up of five weights and two styles, Mission Gothic is one of the most expansive type families available from Lost Type Co-op.

League Gothic League Gothic is a revival of an old classic, and one of our favorite typefaces, Alternate Gothic #1. It was originally designed by Morris Fuller Benton for the American Type Founders Company in 1903. The company went bankrupt in 1993, and since the original typeface was created before 1923, the typeface is in the public domain.

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abcdefghi jklmoopqr stuvwxyz March 2016 39


[ Resources ]

DESIGNERS WITH GO-TO TYPEFACES By Adam Welch

Five famous designers pick their ultimate favorite typefaces

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S

Mr. Eddie Opara Partner, Pentagram Favorite Typeface: Albertus When did you first encounter this typeface? On the street signs in the City of London. I didn’t know what the font was until I got to design school. And I was so fascinated by it because the way it’s cut. It’s based on metal engraving techniques, the effect being that it has is these acute angles, almost 45 degree angles in each letter. It’s also insanely hard to use. I’ve tried to use it and I’ve not been able to. Why is it my favorite font, then? I think that your favorite is always what you can’t have.

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[ Resources ]

Mr. Chip Kidd Associate Art Director, Knopf Favorite Typeface: Blender What do you like about Blender? I’ve been using it a lot over the past few years (and yes, I bought the license to it before doing so) because it has a classic sans-serif presence that feels fresh, due to almost undetectable quirks in the characters with curved edges.

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Mr. Sagi Haviv Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv Knopf Favorite Typeface: Palantino What is the thinking behind Palantino? Palatino is actually quite a generic font. When we presented the identity, the people from the press were shocked that we would come in with a font that was available on people’s computers, for this, the most prestigious publisher in the world—how could that be? It’s looking to the future, but it’s anchored in tradition.

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[ Resources ]

Mr. Edwin Van Gelder Founder, Mainstudio Favorite Typeface: Theinhardt What are you attached to in this typeface? It’s based on Grotesk, a classic serif font, but it’s an updated, contemporary, and very flexible new take on the classic. I like its overall look and feel stern yet friendly. There’s also something architectural about it, it’s got a graphic quality to it, so you can use it to create geometry in a design. It’s not illustrative, not an image itself but it fits really well into grids and systems, which obviously suits the way I work.

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Mr. Mat Maitland Creative Director, Big Active Favorite Typeface: Venus SB Extended How does this type work on Prince’s Parade Cover? For me, it was a really amazing departure for Prince when that album came out. Because it suddenly presented this sophisticated, stripped-back look. It was all based around the film, Under the Cherry Moon, which had a French Riviera, Art Deco look to it. The typeface, Venus SB, was nice and simple. It’s got that Art Deco touch to it, in the R and the E. I’m a big believer in what’s right for a project, and for a world, and I think that was the perfect style.

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[ Resources ]

#typography @thedailytype This self-styled biggest Instagram collection of typography pictures appears to live up to its name, with a pleasing variety of typography on show, covering everything from hand lettering and typographical illustrations through to print design and unique motivational posters.

@jackdzn Jackson Alves is a type designer and teacher based in south Brazil. Showing off his calligraphy and lettering skills, you won’t be able to find a better Instagram account for such examples. We’ve been drooling over his creations all afternoon .

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@typographyinspired Arguably one of the most popular typography Instagram accounts, Typography Inspiration is the perfect burst of illustrated fonts for just about every style. Already amassing over 23,000 followers, Typography Inspiration is clearly doing something right. Join in on the font fun!

@bestdressedsigns If hand-painted typography is your bag, you’ll instantly want to follow Boston-based Instagrammers Best Dressed Signs. Rustling up a range of colorful and creative signage, the typography on offer is absolutely delicious. Throw in a couple of cats and you know you’re doing the Internet right.

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DESIGNED BY / KATIE METCALFE Type set in LATO & ADOBE CASLON PRO Art & Design, Winter 2016 Cover Photo by Gemma O’Brien



338.03 Type Zine 2016 by Katie Metcalfe