outdoorsy fonts This is a topic that many people are looking for. bluevelvetrestaurant.com is a channel providing useful information about learning, life, digital marketing and online courses …. it will help you have an overview and solid multi-faceted knowledge . Today, bluevelvetrestaurant.com would like to introduce to you Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces – YouTube. Following along are instructions in the video below:
“Is something we consume in enormous quantities in much of the world. It s completely completely inescapable. But few consumers are concerned to know where a particular typeface came from when or who designed it if indeed. There was any human agency involved in its creation.
If it didn t just sort of materialize out of the software ether. But i do have to be concerned with those things it s my job. I m one of the tiny handful of people who gets badly bent out of shape by the bad spacing of the t and the e that you see there i ve got to take that slide off. I can t stand it nor can chris.
There good so my talk is about the connection between technology and design of type. The technology has changed a number of times since i started work photo digital desktop screen web. I ve had to survive those changes and try to understand their implications for what i do for design this slide is about the effect of tools on form the two letters. The two k s the one on your left my right is modern made on a computer.
All straight lines are dead straight the curves have that kind of mathematical smoothness that the b zier formula imposes on the right ancient gothic cut in the resistant material of steel. By hand. None of the straight lines are actually straight the curves are kind of subtle. It has that spark of life from the human hand that the machine or the program can never capture what a contrast well i tell a lie a lie at ted.
I m really sorry both of these were made on a computer. Same software same b. Zier curves same font format. The one on your left was made by zuzana licko at emigre and i did the other one the tool is the same yet the letters are different the letters are different.
Because the designers are different that s all zuzana wanted hers to look like that i wanted mine to look like that end of story. Type is very adaptable. Unlike a fine art such as sculpture or architecture type hides its methods. I think of myself as an industrial designer.
The thing i design is manufactured and it has a function to be read to convey meaning. But there is a bit more to it than that there s the sort of aesthetic element. What makes these two letters different from different interpretations by different designers. What gives the work of some designers sort of characteristic personal style as you might find in the work of a fashion designer.
An automobile designer whatever there have been some cases. I admit where i as a designer did feel the influence of technology. This is from the mid 60s. The change from metal type to photo hot to cold this brought some benefits.
But also one particular drawback. A spacing system that only provided 18 discrete units for letters to be accommodated on. I was asked at this time to design..
A series of condensed sans serif types. With as many different variants as possible within this 18 unit box quickly looking at the arithmetic. I realized i could only actually make three of related design. Here you see them in helvetica compressed.
Extra compressed and ultra compressed. This rigid 18 unit system really boxed me in it kind of determined. The proportions of the design. Here are the typefaces at least the lower cases.
So do you look at these and say poor. Matthew. He had to submit to a problem and by god it shows in the results. I hope not if i were doing this same job today instead of having 18 spacing.
Units i would have 1000. Clearly i could make more variants but would these three members of the family be better. It s hard to say without actually doing it but they would not be better in the proportion of 1000. To 18.
I can tell you that my instinct tells you that any improvement would be rather slight. Because they were designed as functions of the system they were designed to fit and as i said type is very adaptable. It does hide its methods all industrial designers work within constraints. This is not fine art.
The question is does a constraint force a compromise by accepting a constraint are you working to a lower standard. I don t believe so and i ve always been encouraged by something that charles eames said he said he was conscious of working within constraints. But not of making compromises the distinction between a constraint and a compromise is obviously very subtle. But it s very central to my attitude to work remember this reading experience.
The phone book i ll hold the slide. So you can enjoy the nostalgia. This is from the mid 70s early trials of bell centennial. Typeface i designed for the us.
Phone books and it was my first experience of digital type and quite a baptism designed for the phone books as i said to be printed at tiny size on newsprint on very high speed rotary presses with ink that was kerosene and lampblack. This is not a hospitable environment for a typographic designer. So the challenge for me was to design type that performed as well as possible in these very adverse production conditions as i say we were in the infancy of digital type i had to draw every character by hand on quadrille graph paper. There were four weights of bell centennial pixel by pixel then encode them raster line by raster line for the keyboard.
It took two years. But i learned a lot these letters look as though they ve been chewed by the dog or something or other. But the missing pixels at the intersections of strokes or in the crotches are the result of my studying the effects of ink spread on cheap paper and reacting revising..
The font accordingly. These strange artifacts are designed to compensate for the undesirable effects of scale and production process at the outset at t. Had wanted to set the phone books in helvetica. But as my friend.
Erik spiekermann. Said in the helvetica movie. If you ve seen that the letters in helvetica were designed to be as similar to one another as possible. This is not the recipe for legibility at small size it looks very elegant up on a slide.
I had to disambiguate these forms of the figures as much as possible in bell centennial by sort of opening the shapes up as you can see in the bottom part of that slide so now we re on to the mid 80s. The early days of digital outline fonts vector technology. There was an issue at that time with the size of the fonts. The amount of data.
That was required to find and store a font in computer memory it limited the number of fonts you could get on your typesetting system at any one time. I did an analysis of the data and found that a typical serif face you see on the left needed nearly twice as much data as a sans serif in the middle. Because of all the points required to define the elegantly curved serif brackets. The numbers at the bottom of the slide by the way they represent the amount of data needed to store each of the fonts.
So the sans serif in the middle sans. The serifs was much more economical 81 to 151 aha. I thought the engineers have a problem designer to the rescue. I made a serif type you can see it on the right without curved serifs.
I made them polygonal out of straight line segments chamfered brackets and look as economical in data as a sans serif. We call. It charter on the right so i went to the head of engineering with my numbers. And i said proudly.
I have solved your problem. Oh. He said what problem and i said well you know the problem of the huge data you require for serif fonts and so on oh. He said we solved that problem last week.
We wrote a compaction routine that reduces the size of all fonts by an order of magnitude you can have as many fonts on your system as you like well thank you for letting me know i said foiled again. I was left with a design solution for a nonexistent technical problem. But here is where the story sort of gets interesting for me. I didn t just throw my design away in a fit of pique.
I persevered. What had started as a technical exercise became an aesthetic exercise really in other words. I had come to like this typeface forget its origins screw that i liked the design for its own sake..
The simplified forms of charter. Gave it a sort of plain spoken quality and unfussy spareness that sort of pleased me you know at times of technical innovation designers want to be influenced by what s in the air. We want to respond we want to be pushed into exploring something new. So charter is a sort of parable for me really in the end.
There was no hard and fast causal link between the technology and the design of charter. I had really misunderstood the technology. The technology did suggest something to me. But it did not force my hand and i think this happens very often you know engineers are very smart and despite occasional frustrations because i m less smart.
I ve always enjoyed working with them and learning from them apropos in the mid 90s. I started talking to microsoft about screen fonts up to that point all the fonts on screen had been adapted from previously existing printing fonts of course but microsoft foresaw correctly the movement the stampede towards electronic communication to reading and writing onscreen with the printed output as being sort of secondary in importance so the priorities were just tipping at that point they wanted a small core set of fonts that were not adapted. But designed for the screen to face up to the problems of screen which were their coarse resolution displays. I said to microsoft a typeface designed for a particular technology is a self obsoleting typeface.
I ve designed too many faces in the past that were intended to mitigate technical problems thanks to the engineers. The technical problems went away so did my typeface. It was only a stopgap microsoft came back to say that affordable computer monitors with better resolutions were at least a decade away. So.
I thought well a decade that s not bad. That s more than a stopgap. So i was persuaded. I was convinced and we went to work on what became verdana and georgia for the first time working not on paper.
But directly onto the screen from the pixel up at that time screens were binary the pixel was either on or it was off here you see the outline of a letter. The cap h. Which is the thin black line. The contour.
Which is how it is stored in memory superimposed on the bitmap. Which is the grey area. Which is how it s displayed on the screen. The bitmap is rasterized from the outline here in a cap h.
Which is all straight lines. The two are in almost perfect sync on the cartesian grid. Not so with an o. This looks more like bricklaying than type design.
But believe me this is a good bitmap o. For the simple reason that it s symmetrical in both x and y axes in a binary bitmap. You actually can t ask for more than that i would sometimes make i don t know three or four different versions of a difficult letter like a lowercase..
A and then stand back to choose. Which was the best well there was no best so the designer s judgment comes in in trying to decide. Which is the least bad is that a compromise not to me. If you are working at the highest standard.
The technology will allow. Although that standard may be well short of the ideal you may be able to see on this slide. Two different bitmap fonts. There the a in the upper one.
I think is better than the a in the lower one. But it still ain t great you can maybe see the effect better if it s reduced well maybe not so i m a pragmatist not an idealist out of necessity for a certain kind of temperament. There is a certain kind of satisfaction in doing something that cannot be perfect. But can still be done to the best of your ability.
Here s the lowercase h. From georgia italic. The bitmap looks jagged and rough it is jagged and rough. But i discovered by experiment that there is an optimum slant for an italic on a screen.
So the strokes break well at the pixel boundaries look in this example how rough as it is how the left and right legs. Actually break at the same level. That s a victory that s good right there and of course at the lower depths. You don t get much choice.
This is an s in case you were wondering well. It s been 18 years now. Since verdana and georgia were released. Microsoft were absolutely right.
It took a good 10 years. But screen displays now do have improved spatial resolution and very much improved photometric resolution thanks to anti aliasing and so on so now that their mission is accomplished has that meant the demise of the screen fonts that i designed for coarser displays back then will they outlive the now obsolete screens and the flood of new web. Fonts coming on to the market or have they established their own sort of evolutionary niche. That is independent of technology in other words have they been absorbed into the typographic mainstream.
I m not sure. But they ve had a good run so far hey. 18 is a good age for anything with present day rates of attrition. So i m not complaining thank you applause.
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Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you ll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.
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