The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

August 3, 2017
by Dan
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David Pearson on Books and Typography

At the Monotype blog, Theo Inglis talks to designer David Pearson about his career and his type-centric approach to book covers: We are increasingly being urged to create objects of desire and the cover obviously plays a key role here, … Continue reading

June 29, 2017
by Dan
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Typographic Terminology A to Z

A nice animated guide to typographic terminology: (via Quipsologies)

February 28, 2017
by Dan
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Back to Futura

Vox takes a lighthearted look at the history of Futura, “the font that escaped the Nazis and landed on the moon”: 

February 9, 2017
by Dan
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Goudy & Syracuse: The Tale of a Typeface Found

The tale of rediscovering Sherman, a typeface designed by American type designer Frederic Goudy in 1910 and revived by Chester Jenkins for Pentagram in 2016 for Syracuse University:

January 19, 2017
by Dan
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So Meta

Adrian Shaughnessy talks to Erik Spiekermann about his typeface FF Meta, the corporate font of Herman Miller, for the company magazine WHY: FF Meta was not designed with Herman Miller in mind, however. It was designed for the German Post Office … Continue reading

November 5, 2016
by Dan
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The London Library Designs by David Pearson

I mentioned Pushkin Press‘s ‘Found on the Shelves’ series earlier this year. The books celebrate 175 years of The London Library, and four more are coming out this month. The entire series has covers designed by David Pearson and, I’m happy to say, three … Continue reading

October 19, 2016
by Dan
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The Bolted Book Now on Kickstarter

The Designers & Books Kickstarter to publish a facsimile of Fortunato Depero’s 1927 ‘Bolted Book’ (mentioned previously here) is now live:

September 23, 2016
by Dan
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The Bolted Book

Designers & Books, in collaboration with the Center for Italian Modern Art in New York and the Mart, the Museum of modern and contemporary art of Trento and Rovereto, Italy, is launching a Kickstarter campaign on October 18 to publish a new facsimile … Continue reading

August 25, 2016
by Dan
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The Last Punchcutter

One for the letterpress obsessives and tool aficionados, The Last Punchcutter is a beautiful, wordless film capturing Giuseppe Brachino — who was the head of the engraving department of the Nebiolo Company from Turin — hand-cut a punch for metal type: (via Coudal)

August 15, 2016
by Dan
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New Penguin Essentials

The latest additions to Penguin’s ‘Essentials’ series, released this month, have some rather splendid new covers, including Jon Gray‘s wonderful design for Embers by Sandor Márai, Julian House’s typographic design (with echoes of Robert Brownjohn) for The Spy Who Came … Continue reading

August 15, 2016
by Dan
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David Carson: All For a Few Good Waves

If you’re not a fan of David Carson’s (in)famous design work, this video is unlikely to change your mind. It is hard, however, to shake the feeling that he’s having the last laugh… Between this and William Finnegan’s Barbarian Days, the surf … Continue reading

June 14, 2016
by Dan
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Johnston100 for Transport for London

A short film about Monotype’s update to Transport for London’s Johnston typeface: Originally designed by Edward Johnston in 1916, the ‘remastered’ Johnston100 typeface, attempts to restore the idiosyncrasies of the Johnston’s design while expanding it to embrace contemporary typographic trends and meet new digital requirements. Johnston100 includes five weights … Continue reading

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