Type News: Mega May
May is here, and with it comes a flowering of news and some spectacular new type. So get up, sweet slug-a-bed, and see … what’s happening this week in the world of type.
We’re not wasting any more time waiting to encounter this week’s new type, though. Hold on tight!
Jason Castle has been slowly expanding his Standard ST family since its 2003 launch. As an alternative to Helvetica and other common grotesques, Standard gains even more flexibility through the recent addition of Light, Extra Light, Ultra Light, and Hairline weights.
This just in from Helsinki. Typolar’s Altis blends “geometric regularity and soulfulness” into an extensive, updated humanist sans family. Ten weights ranging from hairline to black, exceedingly sharp terminals, and just enough curvaceous idiosyncrasies to keep things interesting.
Hoefler & Frere-Jones have finally put their own spin on the humanist style. Ideal Sans is described quite eloquently as “a handmade typeface for a machine-made age.” Spanning an voluminous 48 styles across 8 weights, Ideal Sans includes italics, small caps, persnickety attention to the numerics, and all the language support you can eat.
Perhaps better known for his collaborations with Adrian Frutiger and Hermann Zapf, the masterful Akira Kobayashi has released Akko, his first original typeface in what seems like forever. A softened rectilinear sans with a bit of a split personality, echoing both “the restrained and functional DIN Next and the more organic Cooper Black.”
Coranto Headline is an elegant extension to Gerard Unger’s tidy serif family for Type Together. Originally based on both his original Coranto and Paradox designs, the headline version has been slightly condensed and given an even larger x-height than its text counterparts.
Those exasperatingly prolific designers representing their wares through the Google Web Fonts directory unleashed over 20 new typefaces this week. The list includes Jasper De Waard’s previously promised italics for his semi-stencil Expletus Sans and a baker’s half-dozen by Vernon “One Font Per Week” Adams.
While we’d love to show you every one of these fresh faces — we decided to whittle the list down to a pair of notables by the talented Gesine Todt. First off, Gesine has added bold and italic flavours to her lovely Amaranth, which we lauded just over a month ago.
Compared with Amaranth, Gesine’s second typeface is located somewhere near the opposite end of the attitude spectrum. Bigshot One is contrasty, Didonesque contraption with extra ears and a seriously sassy lowercase g.
It’s becoming increasingly difficult to navigate all the webfont services out there. Sylvia Egger attempts to cut through the mess with her overview of webfont services. Having access to webfonts isn’t enough, though — it helps to understand how best to use them. Potentially helpful is a May 24 event on designing with webfonts, from Webtype, Font Bureau, Monotype Imaging, and AIGA Boston. Are you having trouble with
font-size consistency? Jonathan Snook would like to introduce you to a magic bullet, the relative em. Andrew Roberts shows how to use CSS to create inset text. And in the latest issue of A List Apart, Tim Brown guides us through his brilliant modular scales.
As if life weren’t busy enough already, June 6–10 is “Type Masters Week in New York City,” presented by the Type Directors Club. Erik Spiekermann will be awarded the 25th TDC Medal on Monday evening. Subsequent evenings feature lectures by Cyrus Highsmith, Ale Paul, and Luc(as) de Groot. In addition, Ale Paul is leading a day-long workshop on June 9.
And now, the rest of the news:
- The inimitable Scott Boms interviews John Boardley about the origins of Codex (whose inaugural issue is still available for pre-order).
- Registration is open for TypeCon2011. Still on the fence about attending? Maybe some of the workshops will persuade you to come to New Orleans.
- Fonts in Use covers the lovely new Form magazine and its use of local (Nordic) typefaces. (Editor Cecilia Lindgren would love to hear your suggestions for typefaces to use in future issues, too.)
- Brian Warren discusses Robert Bringhurst’s Elements of Typographic Style and “The Art of Details.”
- The winners of TDC² 2011 have been announced — congratulations, everyone!
- Fonts from Canada Type are now available through Veer; to celebrate they made a lovely parallax type showcase.
- Peter Biľak answers a few questions on design education for TYPO.
- There’s a new website for b + p typefaces and a radical approach to selling type: each font has a trial version that you can download for free.
- Check out Project Neon, which documents the neon signs of New York City — can such delights be in the street, and we not see’t?
- Despite Microsoft’s fraught history with antialiased text, their typography team seems always to be trying to improve the situation. And what do you know? They’re hiring.
- You have until the end of Sunday, May 8, to vote in the Rocking FontFont’s Free Fonts Contest.
- Learn about the history behind the Photo-Lettering bowtie.
- There’s some lovely lettering in this video from Comcast Cares Day 2011.
- Want in on the next round of the Type@Cooper Extended Program? You have until May 31 to get your application in.
- Alyssa Anda shares some beautifully designed insiprational quotations.
- Fontcase 2.0 is out, and among other things features integration with Typedia. Flattery will get you everywhere!
- The Case & Point covers the creation of Nitro for the New York Jets by Hoefler & Frere-Jones.
- Method & Craft interviews letterer extraordinaire Jessica Hische.
- Did you miss out on last week’s webfonts roundtable in New York? Don’t fret, you can download an audio recording of the event.
- Happy 122nd Birthday to Stanley Morison.
- Finally, watch out for Helvetica Von Ampersand. She looks like trouble.
That’s it for this week. Did we miss anything? Did you see something beautiful today? Mark how each field turns a street, each street a park made green, and trimmed with trees — and anything else that strikes your fancy — in the comments.
Thanks to Grant Hutchinson for covering this week’s amazing new type. Thanks also to Robert Herrick for posthumously contributing a couple lines. Those guys know how to write.
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