Type design DVD's/videos?

eliason's picture

Does anybody have any suggestions for quality DVD's available for purchase that address type design and/or typography?

And, does anybody know if David Weiss's "Farewell, Etaoin Shrdu" (1980) (about the last day of the Linotype machines at the NYT) is available for purchase in any format?

Thanks in advance,
Craig Eliason.

twardoch's picture

"The Man of Black and White: Adrian Frutiger"
A wonderful 45-minutes documentary created by Frutiger's nephew Christoph Frutiger who is a professional camera operator. The film is beautifully shot and very thoughtful.


eliason's picture

Thanks for the reply. That DVD looks interesting, but I'm a bit apprehensive about ordering it, because the website states it has a European DVD country code. (I'm in the US.)
Does anybody know if it is available from a US vendor (country code 1)?

dezcom's picture

You can still order it from Linotype just like you can order fonts from them. It is easy to order stuff across the pnd. Don't sweat the country code.


dan_reynolds's picture

Sorry, it is only available as a region 2 DVD. But you can view it on your computer instead of a DVD-Player (unless you have a region-free player…).

paul d hunt's picture

why would you region encode something like that???

dan_reynolds's picture

I do not know. The film and DVD were produced by a Swiss film studio.

Si_Daniels's picture

Maybe you can get other regions direct? There's an email address on the box... cffilm at tcnet dot ch

(edit) Region 0 (and QT clip) here - http://www.artfilm.ch/dvd.php?suche=dvds&id=adrianfrutiger&lang=e

Miss Tiffany's picture

Dan, this would be a great add for the vendor area this year, but it would need to be compatible with my DVD player at home for us to want to sell it. ;^D

Giovanni Jubert's picture

"A wonderful 45-minutes documentary created by Frutiger’s nephew Christoph Frutiger who is a professional camera operator. The film is beautifully shot and very thoughtful"

For once I'd like to disagree with you Adam. ;)
I purchased the film with great expectations, and yes, maybe Christoph is a professional camera operator and did very poethic shots, but he does not care much about typography or type design. I found that there is an enourmous amount of personal information about Frutiger's life that I would have easily omitted. I was quite frustrated, as not much from the art of Mr. Frutiger was extracted and too much drama was added.

This is just my opinion, but I felt like if a great opportunity was lost... a well meritted homage to one of the greatest type designer and a great contribution to type history.

I'll have to see it again for the third or fourth time, and see if my opinion changes, but I was indeed disapointed...

no one take it personal!

twardoch's picture


actually, what I liked about the film was that it showed Frutiger as somebody who is much more than "just a type designer". I think showing typography on film just won't work and I'm grateful that Christoph did not attempt that. For that, we have Frutiger's books. But the film beautifully puts together some of Frutiger's creation in context of the Swiss surroundings, nature and Frutiger's philosophy. I had hoped that it won't be a just another "tell me the Frutiger facts that I didn't know" production because -- well, I know quite a few *facts* so I wasn't looking for them.

Sufficient to say that I was supposed to do a 1.5-hour lecture on Frutiger's work for a small group of students in Warsaw two weeks ago. On the train, on my way to Warsaw, I watched the film -- it has been lying around on my shelf for half a year or so but I only decided to see it in the last moment, so to say. After I watched the film, I immediately decided that I'll cut my own content of the lecture by half and will show the film to the students. Within one day -- when I was already there -- I translated and -- heh heh -- dubbed myself all the commentary into Polish and home-produced a Polish version. It took me about 7 hours, credit to the wonderful Apple GarageBand 3, and it was the first time in my life that I did such a thing :)

The students loved the film as a complement to my 45 minutes of "Frutiger facts". I'd like to get the film published in Poland (with my Polish translation) :)

Another great video that I can recommend is the Golgonooza video (http://www.manifoldmedia.com/ ). It is a documentation of Dan Carr's punchutting work made by Gahlord Dewald. I liked it as well.


Giovanni Jubert's picture

In Spain there is a say that says "rectificar es de sabios"...
Something like, "it is never to late to change an opinion"...

As said I have revisited Adrian's Frutiger DVD,
"The man of black and white" and would like to
retract and extend about my comments.

I did enjoy the very well done documentary
about this Master's life and i think it is a very complete piece,
very carefuly documented and put together,
in a short development of a time line,
and with lots of love and care for subject.

The work of Frutiger is treated with beautiful respect,
and his comments are extremly inteligent and deep.
All toghether a very recomended view to anyone who
cares about subject and has the same fascination about
letterforms, symbols, type and design as we all here share,
and to whom we all owe to Mr. Frutiger.

I think my previous posting had more to do regarding style.
I think it doesnt help being a designer myself (not a type designer),
engaged to a documentarist cinematographer,
and also being young and pasionate....

What I intended to say in my previous posting,
and which opinion the third viewing of the film didnt alter,
is that i have certain stylistics dislikes with how some images,
the music and the off-voice is treated.

I even switched a couple of times in between the english version
and the french one too. in order to check my thinking, but
for me too many zoom in and zoom out effects,
extreme orchestation in music, overacted translations,
would be the remarks...

But again, those are just stylistic considerations,
that should not rest any value to a great work about a great Master,
done with lots of respect and love.

For that I'd like to congratulate Christoph.

Btw. I ordered my copy from Linotype
and seems to be multiregion, or at least work in the US region code.

Oh. Adam,
if you wish I could traslate the content to Spanish,
so you could add an extra language to the polish new version.
I would not mind doing it, but you should have to dubbe it for me. ;)
Anyhow I'll see you in NYC and we can talk more about it.


Giovanni Jubert.

Solipsism's picture

In response to the first post, a VHS or DVD copy of David Loeb Weiss' 29min documentary Farewell, Etaoin Shrdlu can be obtained from:

Carl Schlesinger
39 Myrtle Street
Rutherford, NJ 07070

The filmmaker passed away last year.

jlnagan's picture

I'm working on a type doc right now called Typeface www.typefacethefilm.com Hoping to finish in the fall if all goes well.

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