Type Design Finally Arrives at TED
Well, that was rather unexpected. Yesterday the Twitterverse – by way of the inimitable Tobias Frere-Jones, type designer extraordinaire and (co-)creator of some of the most popular typefaces out there – alerted me to the fact that type design had indeed landed on planet TED. Living legend Matthew Carter is one of the very few (the only?) type designers to have worked in all technologies. He started cutting type in metal, then designed typefaces for every subsequent technology, and currently is at the forefront of digital type design optimised for on screen reading. That’s right, not simply doing it but actually leading the pack. So it is only fitting that he would be the one to introduce the audience at TED to this arcane craft last month. His talk My Life in Typefaces “takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font”.
It is sobering to witness the reserved reception by the TED audience. Then again, you could wonder if it is possible (or even advisable) to condense such a rich and multifaceted career in a mere 16 minutes. Furthermore, engaging a general audience with a talk about such a specialised topic is extremely difficult – remember the talk is about type design, not the more general field of typography. I am with Oliver Reichenstein, who remarked “Type design not only ‘hides its methods’ it hides its beauty and importance”, and concluded this “[s]hows how far removed from common perception we are in our passions”. I’ll take that over an epiphimony any day.
The FontFeed is a daily dispatch of recommended fonts, typography techniques, and inspirational examples of digital type at work in the real world. Eat up.
- Last week Erik Spiekermann published a video about his letterpress shop at P98a in Berlin. Even though the audience at…Read more
- Amidst the excitement caused by the successful launch of the public beta of the new FontShop website I would like…Read more
- FF Headz is the first typeface by designer and illustrator Florian Zietz. The concept for FF Headz is similar to…Read more
- The coming three days I will be at Reasons To Be Creative festival, Brighton’s September conference for coders and designers.…Read more
- From July 5 till 10, TypeCon2011 – the annual conference presented by the non-profit Society of Typographic Aficionados (SOTA) –…Read more
- ScreenFonts: Thor, Last Night, Bridesmaids, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Midnight In Paris, Kung Fu Panda 2 (11)