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Typography III Project 1 Research

I have researched two topics for the poster concerning typography. The first of these was The Monotype Keyboard & Caster which I found a video link for on TypeCulture. The keyboard punches holes in a sheet of paper recording the size of the letters. Each letter has a different thickness (measured in units). Before you begin you set up the line length and as you are punching the keys, the machine subtracts the width of that letter from the line length entered. It also accounts for the space between the letters. When you reach the end of the line, the drum displays the amount of spaces between words and it also tells you how much space is leftover to divide into these spaces. This variable space information is punched into the paper tape as well. Each letter has two letters punched in the row. The caster reads the holes much like a player piano. The message is sent through the air tower where the paper tape is, goes down the machine and pushes the metal pins. There is a set of pins for both the X and Y.  The air goes through a series of tubes to push the pin up. The holes correspond to an X Y axis on the matrix case. The machine moves the matrix case around to the position pushes a centering pin to the back, and the molten lead is filled from below. This machine can go as fast as 3 characters per second. Which, for pre-computer technology is pretty impressive! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8jP91XowAE

The second topic I researched was the process of creating a modular typeface. I was in a workshop with Bruce Willen last semester and really enjoyed this process. Here is a link to my completed alphabet. https://www.behance.net/gallery/21195409/Bruce-Willen-Post-Typography-Workshop-Modular-Typeface  and a preview of the book.

The creation of a modular typeface is based on a simple, logical system. Maintaining consistency and proportions is very important. Scaling or distorting any of the basic shapes involved is not permitted and doesn't make for a consistent, legible typeface. This exercise was really enjoyable. Here are some more examples of modular type creations. http://modulartype.tumblr.com

The reading by Frank Armstrong, Hearing Type really furthered my interest in kinetic typography and sort of explained why I enjoy working with moving type so much. The expressiveness of sound with typography is an important element of design to be aware of and think about. Typography only has the voice that we give it and there is so much we can do. Even in print, a pop of color or a magnification, distortion, or emphasis can change the connotation of the entire piece. Thinking about typography from the perspective of another discipline was eye opening. I realized the more places I apply and seek out these familiar principles, the more rounded my knowledge about them becomes. The rhythm of our typography should match the manner of the language in which it is expressed in.