The Typeface Character

Research from the fields of neuroscience and psychology, shows that typefaces can carry different semantic associations. However, to be able to read a text, the reader can no longer focus on the character of the typeface, as the human mind is incapable of simultaneously giving full attention to different matters. This results in the inherent conflict of typefaces that they on one hand need to draw attention to themselves, and on the other hand need to let go of this attention for the content to be read.

The “Späti” – A local study in Berlin

There are “Spätis” in every German city. Whether it’s the Frankfurt “Wasserhäuschen”, the Dortmund “Trinkhalle”, the “Kiosk” in Hamburg: the names might differ, but the purpose is always the same. In various respects it caters for the needs of local residents and clients, and is, in addition to being a point of sale, a place to dwell, a workplace, a public meeting room, a mini supermarket and a centre of global communication.

Type with character(s) – reclaiming control over OpenType fonts

The introduction of OpenType fonts in 2000 offered designers a rich and sophisticated typographic repertoire. The number of fonts that support these typographic features has grown exponentially over the years. And yet software applications offering typesetting capabilities still fail to provide an adequate typographic interface. Together with Nadine Chahine, Yves Peters is the initiator of the #AdobeTypeUI campaign, and is now collaborating with the Adobe Typography Customer Advisory Board to bring the typographic interface into the 21st century.

Designer on the verge of a nervous breakdown

At the beginning, the re-branding of the Ensemble Musikfabrik was anything but a walk in the park. Q had to endure a very special kind of pitch with some catastrophic feedback before the identity of the renowned orchestra could become visible. This presentation will illustrate why it’s worth persevering in the face of opposition, how the character of the musical ensemble could be simultaneously concealed and revealed, and how a collaboration with the most famous painter in the world came to be.

Nothing new. Nihilism as character development

This presentation examines the art of turning something into nothing. Belief into doubt. Possession into loss. In short, it asks how character can emerge through creation of a distinctively authoritative voice that denies both ist distinctiveness and ist authority. More importantly, it asks why we need such voices now more than ever.

Structuring information

IA, UXD, Content Strategy, Service Design, every couple of months Web designers rebrand and renegotiate the terms that define what we do. In the end our job boils down to the different ways of structuring information, an art much older than networked computing. This is an overview of the rules of thumb we learned in the last 10 years at Information Architects Inc. Some feel rock solid, going way back to Aristotle and his teacher, others seem weird, volatile and freakish, like delicate seeds from outerspace.

Character(s) – the basis of design

There can be no good design without attitude, personality and style.

Just as the idiosyncrasies of each letter have a vital influence on design, individual great characters influence us as designers.

Thirty years of encounters with the real characters in our crowd, thirty years of type directors shows in New York. The publisher and ardent book designer talks about the influence of his attitude, why character saps strength (and often money) and the future of typography in the middle ground between analogue and print.

Reversed contrast

A look at “reversed contrast” typeface design: at letters that are intentionally made thick and thin at the “wrong” places. A number of type designers have set out to break and even reverse the traditional rules of stroke contrast. Is that just an unæsthetic gimmick? Or does it prove that our rules are too tight? A look at examples, mechanisms – and the design process of a reversed-contrast text face.

Continuous text typefaces versus display typefaces in the Ottoman Empire

Ever since the first Arabic script printed book occurred in the Ottoman Empire (1729) the naskh style was established as a continuous text typeface. The persistent use of this style was often accompanied with the nasta’liq, ruq’ha and thuluth styles, and later kufic, which was used especially for headlines in the display type format. This presentation aims to illustrate the key characters and visual differences of the Ottoman Empire’s use of continuous text typefaces versus it’s use of display typefaces.

Building a character

Moments: these little, tiny increments of time we sometimes take for granted or barely notice can have a dramatic effect on our lives. A discussion about my career as a touring musician on MCA/Universal Records to Design Director for President Obama to a Creative Director at Facebook and the moments in between.

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