I hope you had a tremendous, fun and creative September/October?! It is a privilege to be back in your inbox after a months break; there has been lots of awesome stuff going on in the world of type (including the latest Typism conference which was outstanding!)... I have a wrap up of some of the type & lettering highlights in the TypoMusings below...

But first a quick personal update (because lots of you have very generously been enquiring about our move).
Detail of one of my california cases pre clean and pack.
The last couple of months have been super challenging, but we are making good progress with our transition over the Tasman. Cleaning the type and packing the presses to the standards required for the shipping, customs and quarantine processes is a monumental task.

I have 131 trays of type - each sort has to be cleaned, classified and transferred to plastic fishing tackle boxes (or in some cases plastic bags or bubble wrap) as the type can't ship in the wooden California cases. Each case is taking me 2-4 hours so you can appreciate why I have been posting less frequently on the blog and social media! Thankfully, I have almost finished with just 5.5 trays left to pack (I am on the home stretch!)
A California job case is used to store movable type used in letterpress printing. Consisting of eighty-nine compartments assigned to specific letters, spacers and glyphs.

Minuscule (lower-case) letters, punctuation and spaces of various widths are on the left; capital (upper-case) letters are on the right, and numerals and some other symbols are at the top. The position and size of the compartments for lower-case letters vary according to the frequency the letters are typically used. The compartments for upper-case letters are uniform in size and ordered from A to Z except for J and U, which were not used by early English printers, so they are assigned compartments following Z.

Each size and style of typeface is kept in its own tray (case), the layout of the drawer was designed for efficiency - having the more frequently used letters in convenient reach of the typesetter, upfront. Efficiency (as speed) when setting type en-mass is hugely important for commercial typesetters and printers.

I love the California cases and the nostalgia of my old wooden type cabinets, but the process has me wondering about the best way to store type in my new printery. The distribution of sorts in most of my cases fits into one or two fishing tackle boxes (taking up about 1/3 the space of a tray). Given my new beachside print space is smaller than my existing backyard print pavilion (and I will have more time than space) I have been wondering about either condensing more of my trays (so multiple typefaces share one case) or looking at new racking/shelving and storage solutions to store type. (If you have ideas I would love to hear from you!) 
Ngarimu Bay in the Coromandel.
In the new year, we will start work on my new seaside printmaking spot (and also our house and design studio). Located on the Coromandel Peninsula (1.5 hours from Auckland), I hope to be printing again (and making a mess with my type rather than cleaning it!) as soon as possible. In the meantime, I am dreaming up lots of fun projects while handling all the type and am very keen to get inky!
Get Featured!

Submit your work for consideration to Typism Book 4. Entries close November 20. (latest Typism logo is expertly crafted by Local letterer Matt Vergotis.)

If you're based in NZ (or a kiwi designer working abroad) submit your work for the annual Design Assembly poster comp before November 6 (I sent off my entry last week and am excited to see the selected works)!

And huge thanks for all the fantastic projects, type news and typefaces that have been submitted over the last couple of months - I do have a big backlog of beautiful type, calligraphy, lettering and print work to share over the coming months as I catch up on my editorial calendar around my moving schedule. In the meantime keep up the great work!

Wishing you all the very best,
x Nicole
Maria Montes knows how to write a letter.

She was recently profiled by Australia's leading design blog here. The Design files visited her studio in Fitzroy, where she creates beautiful nostalgic type & lettering work and runs workshops teaching others the art of writing. Check out Maria's latest Calligraphy courses here and watch Maria's Typism 2017 talk here too (her authenticity and passion really resonated with the crowd - it was a memorable and beautiful talk).

Craig Black on the creative innovation podcast
What does international political corruption have to do with type design?
Tips for vectoring quality typographic form
Twenty-four very diverse women who rock in the visual communication world. is an interactive website that profiles women who have made significant contributions to Australian graphic design since 1960.

Women Who Design is a Twitter profile directory of inspiring women in the design industry.
Wayne Thompson @ The Design Conference 2017
The Eclectic Craftsmanship of House Industries
Don’t Be Afraid of the Ugly
Check out Vinicius Araujo's electronic 36 days project
How to explore design through typography (not new but worth watching!)
A stunning examination of one of the most popular typefaces ever created
Graphic Values
Tipo e’s How to Create Typefaces: from sketch to screen

is an excellent primer on type design, covering process, principles, technique, technology, and philosophy... read this review by Jason Tselentis


A Five Minutes Guide to Better Typography
Kroncecker Wallis set to republish the “most influential textbook ever” in a minimalist design

This months musing headlines are set in Latinotype's Hernández Niu  designed by Daniel Hernández and César Araya 

In the typedesign industry the terms ‘nova’, ‘neue’, ‘next’, ‘new’ are often used to refer to a typeface that has been modified in different ways: redesign, technical readjustments, greater number of characters, etc. Latinotype use the word ‘niu’ to refer to these kinds of typefaces.

Diversity, change and adaptation are the essence of Latin American culture and, Hernández Niu is characterized by this rich mix of ethnic and artistic influences.

A display slab serif font of thickened serifs, with functional and expressive ink-traps and true italics. Detailed forms and counterforms allow this typeface to be used in very large sizes, but its expertly crafted shapes preform well in small copy for editorial and typesetting too.

This font consists of 6 weights, ranging from Extra Light to Heavy, each with matching true italics. Hernández Niu comes with a set of 397 characters, making it possible to use the font in 212 different languages.

Wolpe's World

Monotype's latest revival project presents a restored and digitised collection of typefaces by Berthold Wolpe. Type Designer Toshi Omagari talks with Grafik about how he picked up where Wolpe left off...

How do we buy and interact with Fonts?
The Characters of Clerkenwell
Some notes on the history of Akzidenz-Grotesk
Copyright © 2017 Nicole Arnett Phillips, All rights reserved.

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