Lecture With Entente

I found this lecture very helpful and inspiring, to see 2 guys the same age as me successfully setting up and maintaining their own design company and font foundry. Some of their concepts and ideas, as well as ideas and designs i’ve seen in a few Emigre and Fuse journals have changed my motivation slightly and re-ignited my interest in concept typography, which was something I based my final major project on in the final year of my BA. I still want to investigate the impact font foundries are having on designers by fueling this consumerism and fashion based business and does it affect what typeface designers can do in order to survive? I want to find out if typeface designers are truly free to design typefaces with the essence they had in mind, or are they designing typefaces that they know the font foundries will be interested in marketing.

Returning to the guys from The Entente I want to talk about a typeface they produced as part of a design campaign for an artist. The font was designed in 3 different variations all with inspiration from times and caslon, each variation intended for a different aspect of the artists business. However, when the artist began to produce new styles and different collections, the fontesque typeface was adapted so that it evolved with the artists changing style.

I think this is a fascinating concept and got me thinking into perhaps creating an ‘easy edit font’. What I mean by this is creating a typeface in illustrator with the bezier curves plotted in such away that when the font is created and then expanded again into illustrator the designer can pull the bezier curves to customize the typeface in a style which is unique to them. This i realize though, is not particularly practical, as once the letters are expanded within illustrator to retrieve the bezier curves, all typographic information is lost, such as kerning and leading. I could however look at producing this font as a vector package, it would therefore be more suited for title application rather than display text. Any graphic designer using this vector package could then customize the font each time they come to use without having to purchase a different typeface for each piece of work they produce. The advantage of producing letters as vector packages could also be that certain elements of a letter could be created in separate sections such as ears or serifs which are drawn individually, this way they could be manipulated without affecting the rest of the letter form, or simply deleted all together to turn a serif letter instantly into a sans serif letter.

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