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The Feedback Loop: Teamwork in Type Design
Big type projects often require contributions from more people than just a named designer, and this was especially true for typefaces that predate digital drawing tools. For instance, the Gill Sans family has been enormously successful since its release in 1928, with a demand for many variations over the years, from the styles conceived by Eric Gill himself to those produced in-house by Monotype, with or without Gill’s involvement. But even those faces first drawn by Gill were completed by Monotype’s draftsmen and technicians, who were the real hands that turned Gill’s concept of a sans-serif letter into fully realized typefaces. Thanks to the commercial success of the Gill Sans family, it is one of the more fully documented examples of the collaborative evolution of a design, with ample drawings, samples, and correspondence still held in Monotype’s archive.