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KABK TypeMedia 13/14 exhibition

Sad to see this amazing year come to an end, but here’s the rich output:
Come look if you’re nearby! The website will be up soonish after the exhibition too.

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Name change

Just in case anyone got confused: I finally ditched my age-old science-fiction-inspired sort-of-tired nick for, well, my actual name. altaira ➽ nina. It's still me :-)

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Walter Tracy hoping for... Typophile

This made me smile.

"It is to be hoped that before long some means will be created – an independent journal, perhaps – which will be more than just a source of information about new designs derived from suppliers' handouts, but will act as a forum in which critical judgement on typographic matters can be expressed and debated, so that typographers will be moved to examine their own preferences and prejudices, and type designers will know that their latest offerings must undergo the appraisal of people who not only enjoy type but have a critical eye for its aesthetic and functional merits."
(Walter Tracy, Letters of Credit, p. 214.
Published 14 years before the inception of Typophile.)

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Off to Berlin

Looking forward to meeting some 'philes.

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Two of the oldest pixel fonts ever

Time and again the question about the "oldest pixel font" crops up.
I went digging a bit.

Pixelated lettering sure is old. You get mosaics in ancient cultures. But what about fonts? I'm going to go out on a limb here and propose that embroidery alphabets published as specimens for embroiderers should be considered fonts rather than lettering. The grid-bound specimens effectively constitute patterns of rules and instructions to be executed (albeit by humans).

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Letter skeleton exposed!

Cover illustration by Barış Sarhan (in collaboration with Ahmet Eken) for a Turkish graphic design magazine.
I think it's a well made and somewhat funny illustration. They seem to be very serious about it as a visualization of the "skeleton model", as "they have plans to make a scale model of the image to send to graphic design departments at various schools in Turkey" (quoted from source below).

Found at

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I've given in to Flickr.

Whenever the percentage of type-related entries on my blog exceeds a (very low) tolerance level, I get complaints from bored readers. So I decided to make Flickr my type-stuff-posting refuge. Apart from here I mean :-)

Have a look if you like:

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Oh yummy goodness!

I think I'm in love. :-)
Though this "g" (and especially its ear) seems to have lost a little bit of oomph in Adobe's digitization compared to whatever version is pictured (though quite small) in "Letters of Credit" (which I've finally received!), p. 132? Hmm.

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Whoa - an undead font sin from the past

Oh man… I just had a major blast from the past. And I have to confess that I kind of lied on Typophile. :-( It wasn't intentional, honestly – my memory failed me. I'm not sure that constitues lying, but I'm not particularly proud of it, and I apologize.

I said Ernestine is my first font. Now, while I did vaguely remember that I dabbled around a bit in Fontographer a number of years ago but quickly realized I didn't know what I was doing… I just discovered that I actually completed wonky lc, UC, and numerals, and put "my first font" up for crits on in 2001!

Kids, don't do drugs or you won't remember what embarrassing things you did eight years ago. :-|

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So I guess this is what they call notan

Not directly type related: I visited an exhibition of African & Oceanic Arts at Fondation Beyeler today and was stunned by these anthropomorphic figures from Papua New Guinea alternately called yipwon or aripa.
Their proportions are a bit impractical for the web. :-)

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Cool counterspace design by a 5-year-old

My best friend's little daughter made this for me (incidentally, on the packaging
of the House Industries' Alphabet Block set that I gave her for Christmas).
I love it.  :-)

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"12 most readable text fonts"

Type choice advice by people who boldly state that "nowadays, everyone is a typographer", even "everyone is a font designer" and, of course, also a "foundry":
I just got my hands on the magazine of Pro Litteris, the Swiss copyright society for literature. For some reason, they're now doing a series on, you guessed it, fonts. This is the first feature: "The 12 most readable fonts."

My favorite comment on that spread: "If you don't feel like designing, or don't have any talent, use Courier. No Design at its best!"

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2009 will be blooming!

Happy holidays and a great New Year to everyone at the Great Typophile from the Little Me! (: I'm heading south for a few days to do my present-unwrapping under the sun. May 2009 blossom and grow for all of us.

And no, I'm not asking anyone to ID all the fonts used in this … ;-)

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Sans to slab: First sketches

As my project in the Zurich-based Type Design course, I originally had the idea of digitizing, and thereby slightly modernizing, this metal face that has been mostly forgotten by typesetting history.

I had fallen in love with it (with its lowercase a in particular); I like its funky proportions and its, sometimes quirky, mix between being clear & clean, being curvy, being 1910 style 'modern', and even being 'modern' still. So, I figured that making something new & usable that should, in a way, breathe a similar spirit as this old face would make for a great project.

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