Some nice books in CR towers at the moment. Here’s three I really like for completely different reasons: Typography 32, The Type Directors Club’s latest annual; The Journey, a direct mailer for a London print company and; Love and Hats, illustrator Andy Rementer’s latest zine…
Andy Rementer (who has just been signed up to be repped by Big Active) has just released his latest zine (above) through Nieves. Over its 20 undersize A5 pages, Love and Hats tells the story of a couple who meet by chance one day and fall in love. Charming stuff. Limited to 150 copies. See more of Rementer’s work at andyrementer.com
When commissioned by London printers Push to design a mail-out to announce and celebrate the arrival of its new Heidelberg printing press, StudioThomson came up with the idea of producing a cloth-bound book (cover shown above, detail below), entitled The Journey.
The book, produced in an edition of 350 copies, charts the three month journey of the new press from its Heidelberg factory through to the first print run completed using it in its new home at Push in London. Here are some spreads:
“Our desire was to highlight the human story – the craftsmanship, precision and sheer physicality of manufacturing, packaging, shipping, fitting and testing what is a huge and incredibly complex piece of engineering and logistics,” says StudioThomson’s Mark Thomson of the project.
“Working with the German photographer Peter Guenzel we shadowed the Heidelberg team through Germany and across the Channel to London and documented all the processes as they happened in minute detail,” he continues. “We wanted the imagery to not only tell the story but to echo the print process – and the flow of energy, colour and light.”
Designed by New York studio Mucca and sporting a beautiful illustrated cover (with two over prints, one in clear varnish and one in gold foil), the Type Directors Club has just published its latest annual, Typography 32.
“The type illustrations were made by a randomly chosen Chinese street letterer from Canal Street here in NY,” says Mucca’s Matteo Bologna of the cover artwork. “The Annual of the Type Directors Club is considered one of the foremost authorites on typographic excellence,” he continues, “therefore we couldn’t resist the opportunity to experiment with the zeitgeist-defining power that such an influential book wields.
“I wondered what would happen if we took what’s considered an extremely “lower” form of typography, like the calligraphy you buy from a street vendor for your mortified sweetheart, and put it on the cover. Would playing with our audience’s perceptions actually elevate kitsch to high art—or at least make it good type? We still don’t know, but that’s for the reader to judge.”
The 360-page hardback book displays all the typographic work from 2010 selected by the TDC jury. As well as showing the 208 winning entries (selected from over 1,500 international submissions) across categories including books, magazines, corporate identity, logotypes, stationery, video and web graphics, two new categories have been introduced to the awards this time: self-promotion, and experimental/unpublished. Here are some spreads:
The volume also features the results of the club’s 14th annual type design competition, TDC Typeface Design 2011, as well as the winners of the TDC Title Design 2011 competition for film titles. Rather helpfully, there’s also a special index at the back of the annual that allows users to find out what typefaces were used in each of the winning projects.
Mucca designed two bespoke typefaces for use throughout the annual:
“The first, Mucca Athenian (above), was inspired by an old brochure found in the TDC Archives that was on the cover of the 4th TDC annual from 1958 which was judged by New York’s best designers including Louis Dorfsman, Herb Lubalin, Frank Powers, Bradbury Thompson and Robert M. Jones, Chairman,” explains Bologna.
“The main reason for redesigning the typeface was because I loved it so much but I couldn’t find the original source and no digital version was available. So I started digitizing the letters from our only available source at the time (the few letters from the booklet) and then asking fellow typophiles if anybody knew more about this face. Fortunately Jesse Ragan (a great NY type designer) showed me the original specimen from the 19th century of Athenian and so I hired him to finish the design and the production of the face.”
“The other typeface (Mucca Zanna, above) that we designed is based on a small sample of calligraphy from a Zanerian’s manual that has the same wacky/naive feel as the Chinese calligraphy from the Canal Street letterer,” says Bologna. “To preserve the spirit of the original we ended up designing a typeface with more than a thousand glyphs.
“By forcing these typefaces, which are obviously not fit for our contemporary aesthetic, to live together within a single annual design that celebrates the best typography out there, we essentially conducted an experiment as to whether or not ‘low art’ could be elevated by its context.”
See more of Mucca’s work at mucca.com
CR in Print
Thanks for visiting the CR website, but if you are not also reading CR in print you’re missing out. Our March issue is an illustration special with features on Clifford Richards, Pick Me Up, the relationship between illustrators and writers, the making of the cover of the New York Times Magazine and a powerful essay by Lawrence Zeegen calling on illustrators to become more engaged with the wider world and accusing the profession of withdrawing “from the big debates of our society to focus on the chit-chat and tittle-tattle of inner-sanctum nothingness”.
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