Circular issue 18

Each issue of Circular, the Typographic Circle’s members magazine, adopts a different design approach. For its 18th outing Pentagram’s Domenic Lippa and Jeremy Kunze have almost dispensed with imagery altogether

Spread from interview with Johnny Kelly

Each issue of Circular, the Typographic Circle’s members magazine, adopts a different design approach. For its 18th outing Pentagram‘s Domenic Lippa and Jeremy Kunze have almost dispensed with imagery altogether…

Set up in 1976, the Typographic Circle is a volunteer-run not-for-profit organisation with aim of bringing together designers who have a particular interest in type and typography.

Cover of issue 18 and spreads from interview with Rian Hughes

The TC is well known for its monthly lectures by leading industry figures such as Ken Garland, Jonathan Barnbrook and Anthony Burrill, and also its staging of the annual New York Type Directors Club exhibition. Circular is sent out to its membership base.

“Although a magazine, Circular is a unique publication as it carries no advertising, and therefore doesn’t need to behave like a normal publication,” says Lippa, who has co-designed the magazine for the last ten years.

Spread from interview with Sir John Hegarty

“We are also very conscious that this is going to designers and typographers who can be the most demanding of audiences. With this in mind we kept main text to a consistent structure and then (hopefully) surprised our readers with changes of pace and size of type to some of the quotes. This creates a tension throughout the magazine.”

For issue 18, Lippa and Kunze have followed a typographically-led treatment. “I’ve always thought typography has the ability to engage and surprise us,” says Lippa, “which is what we have tried to do in this issue.”

Spreads from interview with Harry Pearce

The front section is a series of interviews with previous guest speakers, plus other members of the Circle executive committee including chairperson Alan Dye of NB Studio, Louise Sloper and Val Kildea.

The interviews are set in Regular by A2-TYPE and also Perpetua by Eric Gill and use only two colours. The back section is devoted to a showcase of work of the interviewees – and includes a selection of imagery, such as photography by Pentagram’s Harry Pearce and design work by the studio’s Angus Hyland.

GF Smith have helped to produce a limited edition series of envelopes in different colourways featuring quotes from some of the interviews. For more information on the Typographic Circle, including membership, see It also maintains a blog at

Design: Domenic Lippa and Jeremy Kunze, Pentagram Design. Co-editors: Domenic Lippa, Louise Sloper and Val Kildea.

Circular 18 envelopes

Pages from interview with Andy Altmann

Spreads showing work by interviewees Harry Pearce and Angus Hyland

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