Books about Typography

graphic-design designer-books design typography
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The Elements of Typographic Style

by Robert Bringhurst

About the book:  Renowned typographer and poet Robert Bringhurst brings clarity to the art of typography with this masterful style guide. Combining the practical, theoretical, and historical, this edition is completely updated, with a thorough revision and updating of the longest chapter, "Prowling the Specimen Books," and many other small but important updates based on things that are continually changing in the field.

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Thinking with Type

by Ellen Lupton

About the book:  Our all-time best selling book is now available in a revised and expanded second edition. Thinking with Type is the definitive guide to using typography in visual communication, from the printed page to the computer screen. This revised edition includes forty-eight pages of new content, including the latest information on style sheets for print and the web, the use of ornaments and captions, lining and non-lining numerals, the use of small caps and enlarged capitals, as well as information on captions, font licensing, mixing typefaces, and hand lettering. Throughout the book, visual examples show how to be inventive within systems of typographic form--what the rules are and how to break them. Thinking with Type is a type book for everyone: designers, writers, editors, students, and anyone else who works with words. The popular companion website to Thinking with Type (www.thinkingwithtype.com.) has been revised to reflect the new material in this second edition.

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The Anatomy of Type

by Stephen Coles

About the book:  The Anatomy of Type is the ultimate stylistic guide to the intricacies and design of 100 indispensable typefaces. A delightful, colorful, and visual reference guide created by Stephen Coles and Tony Seddon—two acknowledged pros in the font design world—The Anatomy of Type was developed with typographers, graphic designers, and font geeks in mind, graphically and visually expanding on the current font-mania initiated by Simon Garfields's Just My Type.

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Printing types, their history, forms, and use

by Daniel Berkeley Updike

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A view of early typography up to about 1600

by Harry Carter

About the book:  A View of Early Typography has long been regarded as the classic text on the production and use of type in the first 150 years of printing. By focusing on type, Harry Carter goes to the heart of design, the point at which the material processes of printing meet the intellectual concerns of publishers and the nature of the texts they publish. Among the topics covered: the diversity of letterforms (blackletter, roman, italic, and more); the tensions between Latin and the vernacular languages; and the establishment of standards of norms in type design. This is a facsimile of the original edition, of 1969, augmented by a new introduction in which James Mosley explains the significance of the book and gives a short account of Carter's life and work.

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Letters of Credit

by Walter Tracy

About the book:  THE REVOLUTION in typesetting - a revolution that over the past two decades has eliminated a five-hundred-year-old system of hot metal production and replaced it with one of photo-generated and computer-driven composition - shows no sign of winding down. This book, more than any other we know, traces the steps that went into that revolution and simultaneously makes the argument that the letter forms themselves are in process of evolution. Tracy argues that, whether they are of the sixteenth or the twentieth century, the forms that comprise our alphabet are subject to the same rules of good taste, proportion, and clarity that have always obtained. But what we face today is vastly different from fifty years ago. For the first time, new technology has made the proliferation (and, as some would maintain, debasement) of letter forms fast and easy (or quick and dirty.) With fifty years of professional experience on both sides of the Atlantic (including thirty years as head of type design for the British Linotype Company), Tracy is in a unique position to make this argument and arrive at his sad conclusion: the design of distinguished, contemporary typefaces is far outnumbered by the mediocre and downright bad. Part of the reason for this deplorable deterioration is a lack of critical analysis of the particular esthetics involved. This step-by-step examination of type-design esthetics is precisely what Tracy provides here, while avoiding both the promoter's hype and the manufacturer's claims. Here are the gut issues of what makes type good or bad, legible or unreadable. Extensively illustrated with both typefaces and line drawings, this book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in thehistory of letters or in the artistry and peculiar problems that lie behind their production.

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Anatomy of a Typeface

by Alexander S. Lawson

About the book:  To the layman, all printing types look the same. But for typographers, graphic artists, and others of that lunatic fringe who believe that the letters we look at daily (and take entirely for granted) are of profound importance, the question of how letters are formed, what shape they assume, and how they have evolved remains one of passionate concern. That exploration of letter forms, and their division and classification into "families" or generic groupings, is the heart of this comprehensive study. Written by an expert who has examined letters all his life, this monumental analysis of letter forms considers a broad and representative range of international typefaces. Lawson explores the vast territory of types, their development and uses, their antecedents and offspring, with precision, insight, and clarity. From Garamond to Bembo to the design and manufacture of sans-serif letters and newspaper types, this is the first full-scale investigation of typefaces since D. B. Updike's classic Printing Types was published in 1922.

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Treasury of Alphabets and Lettering

by Jan Tschichold

About the book:  Treasury of Alphabets and Lettering is a classic source book of the most beautiful type and letters of all time selected by Jan Tschichold, internationally renowned typographer and master of lettering. It contains only letters of timeless and lasting beauty--the true mainsprings of the art of lettering. One hundred and seventy-six type specimens are presented, most of them in complete alphabets. The introductory text provides a perceptive analysis of letter forms. Tschichold discusses lettering as a work of art, good and bad letters, older and recent letter forms, the use of capital and lower-case letters, word spacing, line spacing, the selection of appropriate letter styles, and the layout of groups of letters and signs. The type specimens are handsomely reproduced, most in their original size. Every alphabet was specially arranged by Tschichold, and forms a well-balanced graphic design. Many of the outstanding historical sources appear better here than in the often poorly printed originals. The book is identical to the original edition, first published in 1966, with a new introduction by designer and writer Ben Rosen.

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Detail in Typography

by Jost Hochuli

About the book:  An attractive, interesting layout can certainly attract and please the reader; but when the readers are not good, reading requires extra effort and any pleasure is short-lived. 'Detail in Typography' is a concise and close-up view of the subject. It considers all the elements that constitute a column of text letters, words, the line, and the space around these elements - and it discusses what is essential for the legibility of text.

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Letterletter

by Gerrit Noordzij

About the book:  This iconoclastic collection of essays on typography, writing and life is the work of Gerrit Noordzij, a master calligrapher and teacher of lettering and type design at The Hague. Letterletter opens up whole new perspectives on not just the world of letterforms but on the world and the written word, in general. Occasionally cranky, always well-written and insightful, Letterletter is an invaluable design tool and, more importantly, a pure pleasure to read. As Noordzij notes, "Its lack of dignity, authority and tolerance could not prevent Letterletter from becoming a collectors item."

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Modern Typography

by Robin Kinross

About the book:  Modern Typography, 2nd Edition is a completely updated and revised edition of Robin Kinross's classic survey of European and North American typography since 1700, first published in 1992. In addition to numerous new illustrations and revised text, Modern Typography has been re-scaled to a new, convenient pocket format. Kinross's overview breaks ground by focusing on the history of typography as an intricate web of social, technical, and material processes, rather than a parade of typeface styles. Eye magazine calls Modern Typography the book that tells "how modern typography got to be the way it is." Together, Kinross's clear, concise writing combined with his extensive knowledge of the history of typography create a gold standard for how design history ought to be written.

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Shaping Text

by Jan Middendorp

About the book:  Everyone is a typographer. This is the inevitable conclusion when looking at the way in which today's computer users are forced to make decisions about fonts and layout for their day-to-day communication. Writing, typesetting and printing have become part of almost everyone's experience. However, many users are clueless about how fonts work, what constitutes a functional layout and how to communicate best with readers. There has even been a decline in basic typographic knowledge among young design professionals. And yet, a thoughtful and purpose-driven shaping of text lies at the basic of effective, powerful graphic communication. Shaping Text takes a practical and broad approach to typography. It is aimed at design students and graphic designers, and also at those who are concerned with content: writers, editors and publishers. Showing a wide range of examples from first-rate designers across the world, the book examines why and how typographic designs work well in a given context. Particular attention is given to the team play between the text itself - written language - and the design - the shaping of the text - to form a new, multi-level visual message with a complex content. Many textbooks on typography look at the details of type and lettering first, often taking a historical approach, then zoom out to gradually reveal a larger whole. Shaping Text works the other way around. It starts by looking at graphic products - in print, on the screen and in the environment - and then examines the constituting elements, including type, image, ornament, layout, and colour. Historical examples are used as references for most genres of text-shaping; a chronological overview of type design and printing techniques forms a lengthy appendix rather than the core of the book. Finally Shaping Text is firmly rooted in contemporary design praxis. It discusses the state of the art in type design and technology, and tackles problems and questions that font users may be struggling with. Besides being a typographic writer and consultant for leading companies such as FontShop and MyFonts, the author has worked as a graphic designer and teacher; Shaping Text reflects this broad experience with typographic form and content.

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Type and Typography

by Phil Baines' 'Andrew Haslam

About the book:  Providing an essential grounding for both students and professionals, this text takes readers through every aspect of typography, from the history of language and writing systems to the invention of moveable type and the evolution of the digital systems of today.

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Texts on Type

by Steven Heller

About the book:  Never before available! rare essays by critics, historians, and major type masters offer analyses of typography from the 1940s to the present. Includes unreprinted commentaries by legendary designers W. A. Dwiggins, Hermann Zapt, and Paul Rand.

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Stop Stealing Sheep & Find Out how Type Works

by Erik Spiekermann,E.M Ginger

About the book:  A classic guide to typography -- now updated for the Web!-- More than 200 full-color illustrations and photographs bring the discussion of typography to life-- Updated to include new material on Web typography and other forms of online text display.This classic typography book, first published in 1993, is now updated with brand-new typefaces, fonts, and illustrations. Internationally renowned graphic designer Erik Spiekermann explains in everyday terms what typography is and offers design guidance in choosing type for legibility, meaning, and aesthetic appeal. Stop Stealing Sheep and Find Out How Type Works, 2nd Edition guides the reader through all aspects of typography, from the history and mechanics of type, to training the eye to recognize and choose typefaces. Uncover type's roots and placement within society and learn how to use space and layout to improve overall communication. This elegant guide for readers of all levels is revised and updated to discuss the particular design challenges of type on the Internet. Note: This title was originally announced in the October 2000 Pearson Technology Group catalog.

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Type on Screen

by Ellen Lupton,Maryland Institute College of Art

About the book:  The long awaited follow-up to our all-time bestseller Thinking with Type is here. Type on Screen is the definitive guide to using classic typographic concepts of form and structure to make dynamic compositions for screen-based applications. Covering a broad range of technologies—from electronic publications and websites to videos and mobile devices—this hands-on primer presents the latest information available to help designers make critical creative decisions, including how to choose typefaces for the screen, how to style beautiful, functional text and navigation, how to apply principles of animation to text, and how to generate new forms and experiences with code-based operations. Type on Screen is an essential design tool for anyone seeking clear and focused guidance about typography for the digital age.

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