Type Nerds

Type Nerds

photo © flickr user needtoptic

Last weekend a few of us checked out an exhibition called Pencil to Pixel, a showcase of rare finds from the Monotype type Foundry’s archives. We were educated by a type designer currently working at Monotype about the history of the foundry, advancements in type design & reproduction over the years, and some stories about printers and type designers of the past. A few exciting points were the original “sketches” Eric Gill gave to the designers at Monotype of his now robust Gill Sans, a case of goodies by the designers at ITC including a tissue sketch by Herb Luballin, and a demonstration of some new advancements in web typography by Typecast.

Type Nerds

Original sketches of Gill Sans

We saw old editions of a publication Monotype would release regularly called “The Monotype Recorder”, a printed booklet informing the public about new fonts released, opinions about the industry, etc. Unfortunately this is no longer a print publication, but it seems The Monotype Recorder now lives as a website, taking it’s predecessors place in an online form. Take a look at it here. The current issue features a Q&A session and article about type designer Robin Nicholas. It will be exciting to see what they do with the new form of communication, and how this can grow as a new way to chronicle the company. —

Type Nerds

Recorder by Monotype article

Further reading/watching

If anyone is interested in checking out the exhibition it’s going to up for a few more weeks, with free walk through tours just as we attended. It’s well worth the time, and the amazing view from the Tribeca loft which it resides.

And if interested, theres a great movie called Linotype: The Film, a documentary chronicling the machine the film is named after. It covers its rise in the late 1900’s and fall in the advent of photo typesetting, and photo typesettings demise due to the personal computer and desktop publishing software. It’s an amazing look at how important printing was at the time, and a nice juxtaposition to what we’re living in now.