Wednesday, August 11, 2010

8Faces Issue 1 Review

I had the luck to purchase a print copy of the new, limited-edition, typography magazine, 8Faces, before it sold out. And I can't tell you how ecstatic I am that I did. After pouring over it for the past 48 hours, I have a few things to say.

First, I think I'm so in love with it, because I received it literally a day after I sketched out the ideas/concepts for my first (three!) typefaces. I was playing around with custom lettering for some thank you cards, and the next thing I know I was swarmed with ideas and sketching letter forms left and right and technical notes as fast I could. So, to receive a typography magazine the next day added much fuel to the fire.

Some really cool things in 8Faces, Issue 1:

- Interview with Jessica Hische who's Daily Drop Caps and hand lettering-style are going to be subject of my Inspiration #2.

- It's incredibly well-written. John Boardly of ilovetypography, wrote a short article "Type Matters," and he compares the invisible technical details of a typeface that go undistinguished by readers to the way a seasoned chef adds salt to a dish to enhance the flavors but without the diner tasting the salt.

- I love that the interviewees had different opinions on the future of web typefaces and how they should be distributed/owned. Many of them had their hands in different projects such as TypeKit, FontShop, League of Moveable Type, etc. It's very unbias journalism that expresses both sides of an issue without taking a side. And everyone was very respect to each other. Ah, civil debate, how I've missed you!

- My favorite quote comes from Ian Coyle's interview. He says, "When a client comes to a designer - to any creative - it's not just the output; it's about the person: the way they think and the way they approach the work. ...And that only comes from thinking." He nailed it perfectly. When I read that, I thought back to myself about all those times when people said I think too much (as a bad thing) and relished that I have this ability.

- Lastly, they also interviewed Brian Willen and Nolen Strals, who to my amazement are here in Baltimore! They teach at MICA and wrote Lettering & Type (which I am familiar with.) So this was exciting, and a happy surprise/nod to the design community of Baltimore. Yea yea.

Essentially, 8Faces interviews 8 different typographers or design-extraordinaires and ultimately, asks them, "If you could you just 8 typefaces for the rest of your life, which would you choose?" I absolutely loved reading this spread after each interview, to see what typefaces overlapped and more interesting what the departures were. The departures were usually ones that achieved a personable sentiment between the designer and the typeface. It definitely opened up my eyes to some typefaces that I had overlooked. Georgia got brought up a lot as the go to web-safe font. I'm not sure how I feel about that!

8Faces, issue #1 is still available for PDF download if you're interested. I have to say I wouldn't want to read this in any other way than in print. Sometimes, when I'm at the airport or Barnes & Noble, I think to myself, I want to support the print industry, I love print, I'll buy some cool design magazines. And so often I am disappointed at the selection! But 8Faces is awesome because it's informative, well-designed and not-pretentious. I particularly like that's it's not pretentious. And there are extra goodies in it besides the 8 interviews, like a featured art piece, a chance to win something, etc etc. I strongly urge all of you - if you have even a slight interest in typography - to get your hands on Issue 2.

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