Typographics

The magazine for type people

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A party for Typographics, the magazine

The crowd at the Typographics Magazine announcement party at Astor Center, the old DeVinne Press building in New York City.

As Typographics was under way last week, it coincided with the announcement of a new publication—and the launch of this site. Thursday, June 16, Adobe Typekit and Roger Black organized an evening of cocktails and conversations at the Astor Center Gallery to celebrate Typographics: The Magazine. Typographics intends to build bridges between type creators and type users, and also bridges in time. The magazine provides a link between conferences—online and in the form of a quarterly magazine.

Kombinat-Typefounders founder and Type@Cooper Adjunct Instructor Hannes Famira (right) in conversation with calligrapher and type designer Richard Lipton (left) of Type Network.

At the center of the event was a live preview of the magazine’s profile of Type@Cooper Stars by Stephen Coles. The typographer and editor, and publisher of Type In Use and Typographica, introduced five Type@Cooper program graduates. Stephen joked that if anyone would take notes and hand them over at the end he wouldn’t need to write the article anymore. The five budding typeface designers participated in a lightning round of presentations on the theme of “Screwing Up”.

Type Directors Club Executive Director Carol Wahler and Typographics Magazine General Manager Joe Policy debate whether to have a mini fish taco.

Greg Gazdowicz, currently employed at Commercial Type, listed all the mistakes he made as he struggled with the creation of his Type@Cooper project. He walked us through countless iterations of serif shapes, contrast, proportions, and so on. As there is no failure, only information, these screw-ups eventually taught him how to better draw letter forms and build fonts.

Adobe Typekit’s Christopher Slye (center) in conversation with type designers Jesse Ragan (left), co-founder of the Type@Cooper postgraduate program, and Jackson Cavanaugh (right) of Okay Type.

Independent lettering artist Isabel Urbina Peña experimented with opposites, first trying to revive a face with extremely short ascenders and descenders, then one with extremely long ones. The mistakes she made along the way helped her gain a better understanding of how typefaces work. Isabel also showed some of her excellent book covers to put her type design in context, advising the audience to embrace the weird.

A Type@Cooper alumni reunion with Lila Symons (left), freelance lettering artist and Hallmark type designer;  Isabel Urbina Peña (center), independent lettering artist and type designer; and Graham Bradley, Frere-Jones Type.

Graham Bradley recently joined Frere-Jones Type after graduating at Type@Cooper. His presentation illustrated the pitfalls of doing a revival, and the challenges in combining characteristics of two different type classifications – slab serif and flare serif – into one design. He developed his own method for finding that sweet spot: instead of trying to get it right, design two ‘wrongs’ (extremes in x-height, weight of inline,…), interpolate, and then locate the best instance in between the two.

Type Thursday’s organizer Thomas Jockin (left) in conversation with Type@Cooper alumnus, Badson Type Foundry’s Kyle Read (right).

Kyle Read has founded his own foundry: Badson Type Foundry. Instead of talking about actual screw-ups, he elicited numerous laughs by enumerating his early misconceptions about typeface design: that fonts have only 80 characters or so, that letters have to be “technically correct,” and that type design is all about aesthetics. He briefly touched upon mistakes he made while starting up his foundry.

Typographics co-organizer and Curator of the Herb Lubalin Study Center of Design and Typography Alexander Tochilovsky (left), with Typographics 2016 speaker Nina Stössinger of Typologic (left center), with Type@Cooper panelists Commercial Type’s Greg Gazdowicz (right center) and Deutsch NY’s Lynne Yun (right).

Designer, lettering artist, and calligrapher Lynne Yun now works full time at Deutsch NY. She explained how she made the mistake of trying to have a typeface be everything at once – formal but also casual, good for text but also for headlines,… Putting all of her ideas in her first design made her lose sight of the bigger picture and fail. She finally settled for reviving a fat face that could obviously only be good for display use, learning how to derive an italic from the original.

The presentations concluded with a round of Q&A from the clearly knowledgeable audience. Cocktails, tasty bites and inspiring discussions made for a successful end of the event. This introduction to Typographics, The Magazine was a great addition to an already type-filled week, the evening before the lecture series of Typographics began.

Kombinat-Typefounders founder and Type@Cooper Adjunct Instructor Hannes Famira (left) with Type@Cooper panelist Frere-Jones Type’s Graham Bradley (right).

Typographics conference co-organizer and Typographics Magazine Editor Roger Black (left) in conversation with Typographics 2016 speaker Lost Type’s Riley Cran (center) and Typographics 2015 speaker LettError’s Erik van Blokland(right).

Typographer and teacher Indra Kupferschmid (center), speaker at Typographics 2016, in conversation with typographer Nick Sherman (left) and Beyond Tellerrand organizer Marc Thiele (right).

Creative Director Norman Hathaway (left) chats with designer and design historian Paul Shaw (center).

Tobias Frere-Jones (left center) and Christine Bateup, Director at Frere-Jones Type (left) appreciate Roger Black’s (right) conference badge as Typographics Magazine General Manager Joe Policy (right center) looks on.

Adobe Type and Adobe Typekit General Manager Matthew Rechs (left) and design and typography writer Yves Peters (right) discuss Adobe Type Customer Advisory Board matters.

Type Thursday organizer Thomas Jockin (left) and Adobe Typekit’s Meghan Arnold (right) exchanging typographic jokes.

Publication designers Eduardo Danilo (left) and Roger Black (right), former partners in Danilo Black Inc, frequently referred to as one of the top five media design studios in the world during its years of activity.

Just van Rossum (left) explains the intricacies of Python scripting to Type@Cooper postgraduate program co-founder Jesse Ragan (center) and Typographics 2016 speaker Font Bureau’s Victoria Rushton (right). To the right Type@Cooper graduate Isabel Urbina Peña in conversation with Adobe Type and Adobe Typekit General Manager Matthew Rechs.

Type Thursday organizer Thomas Jockin (left), Joshua Dick (middle), and Badson Type Foundry’s Kyle Read (right).

“I swear, the serifs were this long!” Hoefler & Co.’s Andy Clymer (left) recounts an uncanny typographic encounter to Okay Type’s Jackson Cavanaugh (right).

Meeting friends old and new – Commercial Type’s Christian Schwartz (left), Production Type’s Jean-Baptiste Levée (middle) and Lost Type Co-Op’s Riley Cran (right); with Dan Rhatigan and Paul Barnes in the background.

Commercial Type’s Paul Barnes (left), Heavy Meta’s Barbara Glauber (middle), and Dan Rhatigan, speaker at Typographics 2016 and tour guide for the Coney Island Lettering Walk (right).

Type designer and Typographics 2016 speaker Nina Stössinger (left) in conversation with Tamye Riggs, the newly appointed Executive Director of ATypI, the Association Typographique Internationale (right); with Adobe Typekit’s Nicole Miñoza in the middle.

Photographs by Ta-Shea Brown