Finding work: Lessons from the 2008 financial crash

Design Week

Back in 2008 MySpace was on the way out, Facebook was on the way in, the world had just discovered the iPhone and Obama was giving Americans hope. The post Finding work: Lessons from the 2008 financial crash appeared first on Design Week

2008 51

Graduating in a downturn: Advice from creatives who survived the 2008 crash

Its Nice That

Illustrator Jean Jullien, art director Emilie Chen, Moving Brands’ Jonny Naismith, freelancer Victoria Kochowski, and It’s Nice That’s very own founder Will Hudson offer their guidance on how to hold on in rocky times. Features

2008 77

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Our Middle Name

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Last month’s posts about the ¶ and the ß prompted a flurry of e-mail inquiring about other special favorites in the character set. Matt McInerney guessed correctly that the ampersand is one for which we have special affection, and asked if there was anything else we could say about it. How could we not? Ampersand, after all, is H&Co’s middle name.

2008 59

Taxonomy Meets Typography

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Tina at Swissmiss turned me on to this lovely poster by Decoylab , which wouldn’t you know it makes lovely use of Gotham Extra Light. I’m amazed that designer Maiko Kuzunishi came up with so many recognizable silhouettes, more so that she found so many that are sympathetic with the shape of their initials. The B is almost a butterfly already, but who’d have seen the J in jellyfish?)

2008 40

Typographic Gifts for Designers, Part 15

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

If you’re an editorial designer, chances are that you’re familiar with the Society for News Design through its workshops, its excellent international conferences, and of course its annual. What you might not know is that SND operates the non-profit SND Foundation, which provides college scholarships, research grants, and travel stipends to help students attend its events. Did I mention the college scholarships for designers?

2008 40

Change We Somehow Can’t Quite Believe In, Though We Just Can’t Put Our Finger On It

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Every four years, the month of November tenders an exciting opportunity for financial speculation, this year offering an almost practical alternative to your lending institution of choice (still solvent as of presstime) or your flameproof mattress. Behold the high-stakes world of political memorabilia, now doing brisk business on the internet.

2008 40

Type in Three Dimensions

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

The August 2008 issue of Print has this arresting image on the cover. Taking a break from my top secret Independence Day project that combines typography and patriotism (more about this later ), I came across something marvelous that I had to share. I recognized that the typography grew out of our Gotham Rounded font, which is the magazine’s signature typeface, and had assumed that this treatment was a clever and curious bit of digital rendering on someone’s part.

2008 40

THE SECRET LISTENER

Illustration Art

The last king of the Ashanti empire, Assantehene Agyeman Prempeh , was surrounded by victorious British troops clamoring for him to come out of his palace and surrender. The gods had abandoned Prempeh and all hope was gone. But before he went out to face his conquerors, he commissioned one last work of art. Colonel Baden-Powell described the surrender in his memoir of the African military campaign.

2008 43

Remembering Rauschenberg

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

If you draw a line from Shinro Ohtake to Joseph Cornell , and another from Ed Fella to William Harnett , you will find yourself at a monumental, unavoidable intersection. At this great pinnacle sits Robert Rauschenberg, who died yesterday at the age of 82. I would have liked to have known him. His sincere appreciation for the pedestrian, which energized modern art, ultimately came to inform a major theme in modern typography as well.

2008 40

Fantasy League Typography

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

One of the things I most love about the design of the late nineteenth century is its unpredictability. Across all of the decorative arts there was a strong emphasis on novelty, and a succession of new technologies made it easier than ever to execute these strange and untested ideas. You can see this in the terra cotta work of architect Louis Sullivan , or the elaborate inlays of furniture designer Gustav Herter.)

2008 40

His Name Was Almost Legion

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

James Mosley shared with me this striking photograph of some of the world’s oldest type-making material. These brass matrices, made by a Dutch punchcutter in 1508, are now in the collection of the Enschedé Museum in Haarlem. It’s remarkable that they’ve survived long enough to celebrate their 500th birthday.

2008 40

Typographic Gifts for Designers, Part 14

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Hot on the heels of my open question about artists and fives , I came across this marvelous photograph by Berenice Abbott featuring a pair of gorgeous fives in starring roles. Abbott is best remembered for Changing New York, her seminal collection of photographs that documents New York of the 1930s; it’s both an inspiration and a great resource for designers, especially typeface designers whose work is influenced by the public sphere. For eighty years, the A.

2008 40

Voting Irregularities Already!

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

The donkey is universally recognized as the symbol of Democratic Party of the United States. Except inside voting booths in New York State, where affiliation with the Democratic party is marked by a five-pointed star. Midwestern voters indicate the Democratic ticket with a rooster, except in Missouri, where the symbol has traditionally been the Statue of Liberty — coincidentally also the symbol of the Libertarian party, which appealed to use the symbol when they joined the ballot in 1976.

2008 40

Atoms & Aldus

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Last week I mentioned the atomic pen , which scientists used to construct some awfully tiny letters one atom at a time. These are small letters indeed: measuring two nanometers in height, they’re about ¹ ⁄ ₄₀₀₀₀ the thickness of a human hair, which surely gives their inventor sufficient authority to issue the casual throwdown that “it’s not possible to write any smaller than this.”

2008 40

The World’s Most Perfect Script

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Typographically, the Republic of Korea has much to celebrate. The world’s first typefaces cast in metal were made in Korea: a fourteenth century book in the collection of the Bibliothèque Nationale de Paris establishes Korean printing from movable type at least as far back as 1377, though Korean typefounding may date to 1234, some 221 years before Gutenberg.

2008 40

Finds from the NYPL

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Some lovelies from the New York Public Library. —JH. 819191. Petits Genres, a lithograph by J. Midolle, 1834-1835. 419695. Photographs of British Algae, Vol. A volume of cyanotypes by photographer Anna Atkins, 1843-53. 481256. Three several alphabets of the Japanese language, by Engelbert Kaempfer, 1727. 818525. The Prang examples of historic ornament: Arabian. Prang & Co. 1207546. Past and present yacht clubs of New England, L. Prang & Co., 1221613.

2008 40

High Scores for Service and Style

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Whitney has six weights , each of which makes an appearance somewhere in the 2008 guide. With the arrival of a new year comes a new Zagat Survey , and with this year’s edition comes a special typographic surprise: a complete redesign using our Whitney family. The indomitable Zagat team has given the fonts one of their most rigorous workouts ever, using Whitney’s many special features to excellent advantage — here’s some of what’s inside.

2008 40

The World’s First Graphic Design Museum

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

On my first trip to Amsterdam in 1992, I spent a couple of hours having lunch at a pleasant café on Willemsparkweg. I’d come from seeing an exhibit of the year’s best book covers, and planned to spend the rest of the afternoon exploring the city’s many graphic design bookshops. A passing waiter, noticing my open sketchbook, idly asked me what I was designing.

2008 40

Obnoxious Character Recognition

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

At the heart of the game of cat-and-mouse played by bloggers and spammers is Captcha , purveyor of those staticky demands to enter the code exactly as shown above. Captcha is premised on the idea that brains are still better than machines at reading text, and that by forcing visitors to decipher a distorted piece of typography, the system can successfully distinguish between humans and robots.

2008 40

London Calling

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Just a quick note to let Londoners know that the Editorial Design Organization will be hosting an evening of editorial typography, featuring Janet Froelich of the New York Times Magazine, and Jonathan Hoefler of H&Co. Free to EDO members, £20 for non-members, £5 for students. American Night at the EDO. Wednesday, April 9, 6:00-9:00pm. Rootstein Hopkins Space. London College of Fashion. 20 John Princes Street, W1G 0BJ. Inquiries to Gill Branston, 020 8906 4664

2008 40

The Oxford English Dictionary in Limerick Form

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Nineteen years of designing typefaces has amply proven H&Co’s Third Law, which states that for every act of exhaustive research, there is an equal and opposite act of total silliness. This principle extends from typography into other disciplines as well: behold — no kidding — the Oxford English Dictionary in Limerick Form. Precisely the kind of project that the internet was made for, the OEDILF (stop snickering!)

2008 40

Change We Can Believe In

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Above, the new face of British currency, announced by the Royal Mint. The striking new designs, selected from an open competition that attracted four thousand entries, are the work of a 26-year old graphic designer named Matthew Dent. They are Mr. Dent’s first foray into currency design. Below, the new five dollar bill, introduced last month by the United States Department of the Treasury.

2008 40

What’s in a Font Name

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

For as long as fonts have had names, they’ve had bad names. Historical inaccuracies have been common for two hundred years: typefounders of the Industrial Revolution groped for historical labels to apply to newly-invented styles ( Egyptian , Gothic , etc.), and it wasn’t long before typefaces began to bear the recognizable names of unrelated historical figures.

2008 40

Politics Without Gotham

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Not all political typography has to be set in Gotham (though it seems that way) — here for example are some calls to action by Shepherd Fairey that don’t use any Gotham at all. They use Knockout No. Designers in Louisiana, Nebraska, Washington, and Maine have primaries this weekend; Virginia, Maryland and DC, you’re up Tuesday. This means you. —JH

2008 40

A Parisian Palimpsest

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

This one took me a minute. Gustave Peignot spent the last four decades of the nineteenth century acquiring small French typefoundries, which by 1899 were formally organized into the firm of G. Peignot & Fils. Twenty-three years later they would merge with the venerable foundry of Laurent & Deberny, and Deberny & Peignot would be born.

2008 40

H&Co Crime-Fighting Division

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

It was not a dark, stormy night at the H&Co offices, and she was not a dame in a red dress who spelled trouble with a capital T. It was last Friday afternoon, and the caller was Bill Bastone, founder and editor of The Smoking Gun, with a question about forensic typography. The story begins with last week’s report by the Los Angeles Times that murdered rapper Tupac Shakur was assassinated by associates of Sean “Diddy” Combs.

2008 40

H&Co Crime-Fighting Division

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

It was not a dark, stormy night at the H&Co offices, and she was not a dame in a red dress who spelled trouble with a capital T. It was last Friday afternoon, and the caller was Bill Bastone, founder and editor of The Smoking Gun, with a question about forensic typography. The story begins with last week’s report by the Los Angeles Times that murdered rapper Tupac Shakur was assassinated by associates of Sean “Diddy” Combs.

2008 40

A Font Tip for Leopard Users

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

A nifty feature of Mac OS X 10.5 (“Leopard”) is Quick Look , a tool in the Finder that allows you to preview collections of files at a glance. Popular for images, Quick Look is useful for fonts as well, as it allows both styles and families to be examined without leaving the Finder. In the Finder, select a bunch of fonts and hit the space bar.

2008 40

Unicode Poetry Slam

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

I feel certain that I’ve seen the logo for Fermata Festival on canvas totebags at the greenmarket, and that Fox Fraction is part of the Action 10 News Team. I’m equally convinced that Falling Family and Feathered February are Lifetime Original Movies, and that Fit Fita Five once opened for Afrika Bambaataa at the Mudd Club.

2008 40

Large Hats & Small Caps

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Having begun the week with Senator Barack Obama’s typeface , it seemed appropriate to look back at the typography of campaigns past. Here’s a splendid piece of Americana that will be at auction at Christie’s next week: a carved polychrome and gilt political hat, dated 1872, from the collection of Marguerite and Arthur Riordan.

2008 40

Not Playing at a Theater Near You

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Now appearing at Vanity Fair is a great exhibit of lobby cards from the collection of the late Leonard Schrader. From Schrader’s collection of 8,462 items the editors have chosen an attractive and representative set of 36 that celebrates the golden age of lettering, before its ultimate fall to typography. At left, an excerpt from Saved by Wireless , Joe and Mia May’s 1919 epic about which the IMDB is strangely silent.

2008 40

All The News That’s Fit To Write

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

The distance between handwriting and typography is at its greatest in the West. It’s been more than five centuries since the Latin alphabet, as we experience it in type, looked anything like letters made with a pen; the very anatomy of our alphabet, with its stonemason’s “serifs” and printer’s “cases,” has come a very long way from writing indeed.

2008 40

Two Fools

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

I pretty much agree with Anil Dash on the topic of wacky April Fools’ jokes for websites, so instead I thought that today might be a good day to share a piece of genuine idiocy from the archives. By the time Tobias and I began working together in 1999, we'd been friends for a decade, and had spent most of the previous years in close contact by phone.

2008 40

Fontogenic

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Veteran campaigners know that the best way to gain someone's vote is to be photographed holding their baby. It seems that the same goes for fonts: it’s hard to take a non-partisan stance when one of the candidates looks so good standing in front of your typeface.

2008 40

ARTISTS IN LOVE, part 15

Illustration Art

In 1886, Camille Claudel dictated a contract for her lover to sign. Claudel was only a young art student but her lover, the great sculptor Rodin, obediently wrote down every word: In the future starting from this day of October 12, 1886, I will have as my Student only Mademoiselle Camille Claudel , who will be my sole protege. I will accept no other students to avoid producing, by chance, rival talents, although I suppose that such naturally gifted artists occur very rarely.

2008 37

THE LANGUAGE OF FORMS

Illustration Art

I love this picture from an old reference book about birds. The anonymous artist could have presented the same basic information a thousand different ways, but he chose to emphasize the design. When you look at the shape, the colors, the negative space, you know right away: this was an artist who understood the language of forms.

2008 28

Pilcrow & Capitulum

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

My last post made passing mention of the pleasures of designing the paragraph mark, prompting one reader to rightly ask, “how much fun can it really be to draw a backwards P ?” ” [ No more fun than it is to draw the rest of that font you’re using, matey. —Ed. ] It may not seem obvious, but the lowly paragraph mark really does offer ample opportunity for invention. Like most punctuation, the paragraph mark (or pilcrow ) has an exotic history.

2008 65

Typographic Gifts for Designers, Part 11

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Picking up where we left off last year , we thought we’d round out 2008 with some holiday ideas for the recovering typophiliac in your life. I’m intrigued by Jen Bekman’s 20x200 , which every week produces small runs of small works on paper, at prices to match. Among their collection of prints and photographs is this limited edition print by Superdeluxe, the studio of designers Adrienne Wong and Karin Spraggs.

2008 40

Type Tour II

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

If you missed Tobias’s Typographic Walking Tour last September, and weren’t one of the 22 lucky callers to register for his 2008 encore performance , you’ve one more chance. Come to the 2008 FUSE conference , April 13–16 at the Chelsea Piers, where Tobias joins Malcolm Gladwell, Stefan Sagmeister, Debbie Millman, Chip Kidd and other sharp tacks for a three-day exploration of design and culture.

2008 40

The Sulzbacher Eszett

Fonts by Hoefler&Co.

Our designers are often asked if there are particular letters that we especially enjoy drawing. Office doodles testify to the popularity of the letter R , perhaps because it synopsizes the rest of the alphabet in one convenient package (it’s got a stem, a bowl, serifs both internal and external, and of course that marvelous signature gesture, the tail.)

2008 49