Re: Favourite fonts for Photopolymer printing
Just a couple of points here.
In terms of digital letterpress it really doesn't matter what great
historical typefaces are out there waiting to be digitized. The main
concern is that they would need to be digitized for letterpress and
that just isn't going to happen. The dfTYPE work is an anomaly. Rialto
was field tested on a letterpress flatbed cylinder press during
production. Compensations were made to the face based on these tests.
This isn't going to happen with DTL or Enschedé. The example of Bembo
Book is indicative. No matter how improved over the previous digital
Bembo, it isn't exactly what is needed for letterpress, nor is that
its purpose. So we are left to our own devices [modification of
fonts], which, for the most part, based on many current foundry
leasing contracts, is illegal.
[My recollection of Rialto, by the way, is that its lowercase was
based on Dutch examples not Venetian or Aldine. The uppercase was
based on the Roman epigraphics. Fischbachpresse not only has the metal
faces you mention but a much wider venue so it isn't quite accurate to
just use these specific examples.]
The problem with discussing technical issues of letterform design as
they apply to letterpress is that very few of "us" really care. I
think the postings (or lack of) here have made that quite clear.
Printers take what they are given. Period. They pretty much always
have. And if "we" don't care about quality, why should the type
designers? There are, by the way, a goodly number of foundry
representatives on the list, including dfTYPE. I don't think they are
getting the kind of message you hope will inspire them. Farida's last
post has much more import. Speak with your pocketbook.
> Recalling the issue at stake here (which are favourite founts for pp
> printing), I'd like to make a small digression.
> Note that until the production of their own typeface, the developers of
> Rialto at the Fischbachpresse used such exquisite founts as Van
> Lutetia, Romanée, Romulus and Cancellaresca Bastarda, two of which(Lutetia
> and Romulus) are the favourites of Harold Berliner as well, as hetestified
> earlier on. Besides Monotype Spectrum non of these superb faces by VanDutch
> Krimpen are easily accessible in a digital version. Frank Blokland's
> Type Library, however, is working on the 'JvK Project', striving for acosts about
> high-end digitisation of the typo-calligrapher's Gesamtoeuvre. DTL
> Haarlemmer is available for some years now (the complete family
> 1.200 euros, VAT excl.), Romulus has been digitised, but does notseem to
> have been made publicly available already. I am eagerly expecting thecompanions to
> digital rebirth of the Cancellaresca, Greek and Open Capital
> Romulus, and some of those beautifully rendered glyphs (such as theitalic
> lower g), that are in Van Krimpen's first typeface only, Lutetia.at least
> Now, I wonder why Karner and De Faccio turned back to an Aldine (or
> Venetian) example when creating their own face, where Karner in theforgoing
> publications of his private press seemed to have had a preferencefor the
> more austere, yet graceful aristocracy of such 'modern' faces asthose by
> Jan van Krimpen. I say 'aristocratic' and 'modern' since Van Krimpen'sDidot,
> designs, in a way, recall the upright, rational faces by Bodoni and
> with a strong contrast, albeit not as heavy as in the classicistfaces. At
> the same time Van Krimpen succeeded in keeping the humanist eleganceof the
> garaldes. This is why, I believe, his alphabets are so splendid tome: they
> have all the best of typographic history, united in one typeface.This is
> also why the Van Krimpen typefaces have a timeless and thereforeup-to-date
> look, unlike the vast amount of modern day revivals and interpretations.because
> Such as Rialto. Despite some of their excellent particularities I am
> personally not very fond of those postmodernist designs as e.g. Gentium,
> Warnock &c. Rialto suffers the some postmodernist fancies, precisely
> of its calligraphic structure.typefaces to
> There is also a technical issue. The calligraphic inclination of the
> traditionalist party in postmodernist type design, causes their
> have a strong contrast (very fine serifs, precious calligraphicstrokes),
> which I think will hardly endure them being transferred on film,plate &c.
> The final resulteven with the expected ink gain on pressis a harsh and'Pressa'
> uneven, spiked text colour, very much the opposite of e.g. Griffo'salso
> calligraphically inspired!Aldine face. Although the pp optimised
> version of Rialto (with ink traps) seems promising, I think Rialtois not
> the best typeface possible as for printing pp letterpress, preciselybecause
> of it's calligraphic features. A modern-day typeface that might havebetter
> results, imho, would be a Van Krimpen inspired, pp letterpress optimisedclassics, but
> one, that is to say: one that keeps the humanist sway of the
> in bearing on a rationalist construction avoids calligraphicextravagance
> and will thus avoid coarse reproduction conditionstypefaces
> Perhaps it would be useful to discuss a bit more in detail which
> are actually used most in pp letterpress and what be their respectivebuilding
> defects and qualities. I am very much interested to hear about the
> favourites of the members here, so as to have a reliable guide in
> my fount library. Technical aspects, in regard to photopolymerletterpress
> printing, will have priority in such a discussion, I think.
> Kind regards,
I think I have found something...
I had previously not read the final chapter, "The Colorado Project,"
on Mandel's work in the Southall book. Mandel used the term "cutout"
for ink trap and "finial" for thorn. The note regarding the problem of
scale and size with PostScript is of interest as is his suggestion
that these additions need to be sacrified during printing "leaving
behind the real intended shape of the character." Southall does spend
a bit more time with this.
> > In this regard I have another question. Discussing ink traps, it is
> > claimed that in the old days such skilled punch cutters / font
> designers as
> > e.g. J.M. Fleischmann deliberately changed the form of their glyphs
> on the
> > punches, precisely because of ink gain matters. Is that so? Did you
> > metal punches that prove this? And if that be the case, what exactly
> > punch cutters took into account? Did they write down their
> experiences so as
> > to hand over their knowledge to progeny?
> > As soon as I have cleaned up my messy documentation folders and
> found the df
> > paper, I'll inform you.
> > Kind regards
> > Ludwig