Type Love

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JUST READ 02: TYPE MATTERS!

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From a young age, I was aware of typefaces. Only I didn’t know they were typefaces as I was five, and although fairly bright and a precocious reader, I wasn’t some kind of intellectual-design-kid-prodigy (although how cool would one of those be?!). I remember wondering why certain ‘types’ of letters were used for kids books, adults books, cereal boxes, billboards, TV adverts etc. and noticing patterns as to how they were used, the styles that were aimed at kids on toys and cartoons for example. Then as an egotistical and slightly obnoxious teenager I spent inordinate amounts of time developing (far too) many variations on how I wrote and signed my name (Mandi, with an ‘i’ of course – cringe) and then painstakingly scrawled it all over my – and my pals’ – schoolbooks.

Safe to say, I find the subject of typography fascinating, and can look at type books for hours; probably longer than would be considered healthy. I obsess about it because as a designer, its an important part of my job; weird typesetting and crazy typeface choices can do so much damage to visual harmony, brand voice, legibility, readability and ultimately the viewer’s understanding of a piece of communication.

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Anyway this brings me to this excellent book, Type Matters! by Jim Williams. This is a great book for a basic, but comprehensive, education in typesetting. An absolute pleasure to read with a gorgeously tactile cover, rounded page edges and beautiful typographic spread.

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Type Matters! covers a huge range of topics, with each being illustrated with clear examples. I devoured this book in no time at all. To be honest much of it I was taught at college, but it’s always good to refresh your memory I say. This is a fabulous book for design students, and also a handy reference tool for seasoned designers too. Plus it looks great on your bookshelf…

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You can buy Type Matters! here

TREND TYPEFACE

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Trend - Myfonts

Trend - My fonts

Just bought this beauty from my fonts. Yes, I look at fonts for fun, and would much rather buy a font than a dress. Hands down.

Trend is, despite the above declaration, hipster as hell. It’s like the lovechild of Gotham and Neutraface, two of my absolute favourites and comes in a huge selection of weights – sans, shaded, inline, shadow and a lovely contrasting slab. I’m also delighted to see that there is a huge selection of quirky ornaments. Plus, look at that ‘R’, cheeky or what?

All in all 20 weights plus ornaments and webfont for £17.50 is amazing. Buy it here, it’s on sale (a whopping $140 off) until February 18th. Both images from myfonts.

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Ink Mandy Fleetwood

INK

By | Type Love | 3 Comments

I have a print for sale, did I say? No? Well here it is and you can buy one here. It’s a lyric from Joni Mitchell’s song Blue, that just begged to be depicted in a typographical tattoo style. Plus I love an excuse to play around with type and customise letters…

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ADVICE TO SINK IN SLOWLY

By | Advice, Collaberation, Downloads, Type Love | No Comments

Advice to Sink in SlowlyThis is my contribution to Advice to Sink in Slowly, an ongoing series of posters designed by graduates for the purpose of passing on advice and inspiration to first year students.

My advice is ‘If you don’t create it, it doesn’t exist’. When I was a student I often felt demotivated by comparing myself to other students/designers/agencies and lacked confidence in my work, and sometimes felt inhibited by this. Whereas the reality is that students are probably creatively at their free-est. I’d like to encourage them to be free, and unafraid and to have confidence in their ability; every creative has something totally unique to offer.

And because it’s nice to be nice you can download a free iPhone wallpaper of the print here.

Advice to sink in slowly

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

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I do love a good costume drama, this one had particularly excellent opening titles. I loved the butterfly dust particles on the ageing lace and the decay of something beautiful, like Miss Havisham. To work on a project like this has definitely been added to my dream project list.

“We follow the birth and death of a butterfly. In beautifully textural 3D, the creature bursts out of the cocoon, unfurling its fragile self into a dark world. As the sequence progresses we see intricate filigree tattooed onto the wings, growing like creeping ivy.

Eventually the tattoos start to envelop the entire wingspan, patterns over patterns until the creature is blacked out to an eerie silhouette of itself.

The sequence parallels the lead character’s evolution – Pip’s fascination with Miss Havisham’s otherness and wealth before his realisation that all is not as it seems.”

By Momoco

LINOTYPE – THE TWITTER OF 1886

By | Events, Type Love | No Comments

Ottmar! You’ve done it! A line of type!

Whitelaw Reid, New York Tribune, 1886

At the Ampersand 2012 Conference we were treated to a screening of Linotype: The Film over lunch followed by a Q&A session with the director, Doug Wilson (whose very cool ampersand tattoo is set in Scala, fact fans).

This is a wonderful film and not only for type enthusiasts. The Linotype was invented on 3 July 1886 by German watchmaker Ottmar Mergenthaler and created a communication revolution. Publications that previously required to be typeset by hand could be done much faster using the LInotype machine to create lines of hot metal type. This allowed for news to be reported to the public hours after it happened, and also made the production of printed publications cheaper thus allowing for the widespread and timely dissemination of information to the masses. It also didn’t even put anyone out of work, it increased the demand for print so much that hand type setters were employed to operate Linotype machines. Win, win I say.

All in all a fascinating tale of an invention that changed the world, a great piece of social, industrial and cultural history. Linotype: The Film will be released on DVD in October and will also be available Netflix, iTunes and Amazon. Absolutely worth a watch,

Oh and I also treated myself to an awesome letterpress print, pressed by the director himself. Amazing Lintoype artwork by Brian Collins

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