Read: Just My Type

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This book is the first in a new regime here at Shifter. “Operation Improve.” I am about to make a YouTube film about what this means and what I plan on doing but the gist is that I need to improve in a wide range of creative areas. Graphic Design is at the top of the list. Type is life. Can we live without it? Sure, but imagine how difficult that might be. Type is a language of message, meaning, and direction and also something that many of us take entirely for granted but hidden out there is a world of type-cast’s, those who devote their being to harnessing then freeing the power of the letter.

I have worked with these folks, traveled with them, and recently encountered one who happened to give me a ride. After leaving the car I said “I have to know more,” which lead me to Simon Garfield’s “Just My Type.” Where do these typefaces and fonts come from? What is their history and why are they used? Are fonts good or evil? Can they contain more than their style and should that style be the message itself?

This book is fun, fast, and loaded with information and history. A perfect beginning to my new voyage of alphabetic discovery. Get it, read it. (PS: Foreward is by Chip Kidd who is awesome and happens to be the author of one of my fav books “The Cheese Monkeys.”

Comments 4

  1. I want to learn more about bookmaking across the board. In general, at least for now, I mainly want fonts and sizes to be consistent for their various functions and harmonious.

  2. I’m also very into this, and would love to read this as well. I used to work with annual report designers, and that started me into the wonderful world of fonts. Now I love to snap pics of cool fonts and typefaces – especially on businesses – that catch my eye. I often wonder “Why did they pick that font? Did the sign person pick it? Did they have any idea? Why do they use four fonts on their signage?” It’s like a secret world. #FontSunday is a thing I participate in on Twitter.

  3. Coursera, if you haven’t already heard of it, is a wonderful way to improve life skills. I recently did a course on 19th Century Visual Literacy in Japan and loved it. They have all kinds of courses to try out.

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