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ATypI 08 St Petersburg

Speaker details

Eben Sorkin

Type Designer Eyebytes | United States

Eben Sorkin is a recent graduate (class of 2009) of the MA in type design program at Reading University. He spent February and March learning how to carve letters in stone from Lida Cardozo at the Cardozo Kindesley workshop, Cambridge UK, and collaborating with Lida on the typeface Pulle. He is currently living in Boston and is a freelance type designer. Eben’s Reading MA dissertation included a scientific experiment looking at how and why reading speed decreases when text is negatively tracked. Eben is interested in empirical methods’ potential to contribute to typography and to type design.

Presentation details

Contextual alternatives
The next big opportunity for enhancing Latin text face quality

Session A17 | Room Palace A
Sunday 21 September | 14:00 – 14:50

Theme Methods | Duration: 50 minutes

Practicality and efficiency have constrained the text face in a way more profound than with any other kind of type. While this made sense in the past, and type designers have done an amazing job of making virtue from this constraint; we have also become too habituated to the constraint. So much so that now we sometimes have trouble imagining how the new freedom offered by OpenType contextual alternates could be used to subtly enhance quality and utility in text faces in the same way that optical correction for size, overshoots, or kerning can. Happily there are some digital faces that are beginning to explore this area and there is 5,000 years of tradition in scribal work, incunabula, lettering, calligraphy and stone carving to draw upon and even hints from the original Linotype drawings.

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