Design School: Type
eBook - ePub

Design School: Type

A Practical Guide for Students and Designers

Richard Poulin

  1. 240 páginas
  2. English
  3. ePUB (apto para móviles)
  4. Disponible en iOS y Android
eBook - ePub

Design School: Type

A Practical Guide for Students and Designers

Richard Poulin

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Información del libro

Design School: Type is an in-depth guide to the rules and practices of typography, you'll learn the essential skills of the professional typographer in the detail. Searching for a way to increase your skills as a typographer? This instructive guide, specially designedfor students, recent graduates, and self-taught designers isa comprehensive introduction to typography. These guided lessons offer in-depth analysis of all the major areas of theory and practice used by experienced professional designers. Each section is interspersed with tests designed to help you retain the information they've covered, and a selection of relevant support files in popular design software formats so you can test yourself with provided demos. This guide to the rules and practices of typography avoids the temptation to stray into other areas of design technique, preferring to cover the essential skills of the professional typographer in the detail required to arm students and graduates with the knowledge needed for a successful start to their chosen career.

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Section 1

Type Classifications

This section examines in detail the history of type through the organization and classification of type styles and time periods. Each type classification is presented with an overview, brief biographies of prominent type designers, visual characteristics, and applications, as well as sidebars covering distinct developments or features of each type classification.
How does a graphic designer determine, among the thousands of typefaces available, which font or fonts might fulfill a specific need? While most typefaces are classified into three categories—serif, sans serif, and script—it is a limited and somewhat shortsighted classification system. One method for familiarizing yourself with typefaces and their unique characteristics and attributes, as well as understanding their historical development and potential applications, is to use a more detailed and accurate system of type classification.
All type classification systems use the historical development of type, from the fifteenth century to the present day, as their organizational framework. While there are no two type classification systems that agree upon specific categorization of every typeface, these systems still remain an effective and informative reference guide for identifying and utilizing the number of typefaces available today.
An early type classification system by typographer Francis Thibaudeau (French, 1860–1925) was based on four broad categories of typefaces, namely Antiques (Sans Serifs), Egyptiennes (Slab Serifs), Didots (moderns), and Elzévirs (typefaces with triangular serifs).
A basic system for classifying typefaces was also devised in the nineteenth century, when printers sought to identify a heritage for their own craft analogous to that of art history. Humanist letterforms are closely connected to calligraphy and the movement of the hand. Transitional and modern type-faces are more abstract and less organic. These three main groups correspond roughly to the Renaissance, Baroque, and Enlightenment periods in art and literature. Historians and critics of typography have since proposed more finely detailed schemes that attempt to better capture the diversity of letterforms. Designers in the twenty-first century have continued to create new typefaces based on these historic characteristics.
The first and most universally used type classification system, Vox-ATypl, was developed in 1954 by typographer Maximilien Vox (French, 1894–1974), adopted in 1962 by the Association Typographique Internationale (ATypl) and in 1967 as the British Standards Classification of Typefaces (BS 2961:1967). Subsequent attempts in creating universal type classification systems were also made by ATypl (1961), DIN (1964), Lawson RIT (1971), Bitstream (1986), Linotype (1988), and Adobe (1991).
The following type classification system is a simplified, practical reference tool for graphic designers and is based on the anatomical characteristics of letterforms, with several sub-categories.
Classification Categories
Old Style
Slab Serif
Sans Serif (Grotesque, Neo-Grotesque, Geometric, Humanist)
Script (Formal, Casual, Calligraphic)
Blackletter (Textura, Bastarda, Fraktur, Rotunda)
Examples of each type classification with brief descriptions of their historical development and their primary visual characteristics are provided on the following pages.
Core Humanist Typeface:
Jenson (1471)
Nicolas Jenson (French, 1420–1480)
Type Designer Profile:
Nicolas Jenson
(French, 1420–1480)
Nicholas Jenson studied punch cutting (see here), printing, and typography in Mainz, the German birthplace of typography, before establishing his own printing press in Venice, Italy. He was one of the first printers to use type based on the traditional Roman letter rather than the dark Blackletter (see here) or Gothic type found in earlier German printed books. His early Roman letterforms have strong vertical stems and reflect the transition from thick to thin strokes originally created by a broad-nibbed pen.
Born in northeastern France in 1420, Jenson initially apprenticed at the Paris Mint before being promoted to Master of the Mint in Tours...


  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Introduction
  5. 1. Type Classifications
  6. 2. Terminology
  7. 3. Characters and Glyphs
  8. 4. Typographic Principles
  9. 5. Selecting Typefaces
  10. 6. Typography in Practice
  11. Test your Knowledge Answers
  12. Resources
  13. Bibliography
  14. Index
  15. Credits
  16. Copyright