‘This is the age of the type designer’
Nicole Dotin is a typeface designer and a co-founder of the Minneapolis-based Process Type Foundry.
This is unequivocally a special time to be a type designer – perhaps this is the age of the type designer. Although there have been a number of great advances in the field – device-independent fonts, personal computers and font editing software, the progression of PostScript, TrueType and OpenType – the invention of the Web stands out to me as the one that pushed all these innovations further than they would have gone on their own. The benefits to the individual type designer have been phenomenal.
Take Feijoa, Kris Sowersby’s first retail release. In the short time since 2007, he has launched a successful career as a typeface designer. Like many of his contemporaries, he has been able to use the internet to get feedback on the design, forge business connections, find a venue for his work and, ultimately, create his own path from amateur to professional. For someone with enthusiasm, talent and Internet access, a career as a typeface designer is closer in reach than at any other time in history.
First published in Eye no. 71 vol. 18 2009
Eye is the world’s most beautiful and collectable graphic design journal, published quarterly for professional designers, students and anyone interested in critical, informed writing about graphic design and visual culture. It is available from all good design bookshops and online at the Eye shop, where you can buy subscriptions and single issues.