Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Just My Type: A Book About Fonts by Simon Garfield
Title: Just My Type: A Book About Fonts
Author: Simon Garfield
Publisher: Gotham Books
Author Website: simongarfield.com
Twitter: @gothambooks, @simongarfield
Rating: 4/5 stars
Being a graphic designer and a typographer first and foremost, I thoroughly enjoyed Just My Type. For a subject that I think most people would find fairly boring (exactly how much can you really say about type, right?), I found the book to be fairly easy to read and I think most people who are not as familiar with type and design but are still interested in the history behind certain fonts and what went into creating certain typefaces will find this book very approachable.
I love playing with type, seeing what can be done when you take words and turn them into strict letterforms and play with the art of the letters and still make something legible out of it. I really enjoyed reading the history and story behind the design of some of my favorite fonts. The one complaint I have with the book is several times Garfield mentions a certain font and what made that font something special for its time or mentions the way a particular letterform is designed, without always giving the reader an example of either the complete typeface or at the very least an example of the particular letterform he's talking about. I think this would have gone a very long way in helping people see what he is talking about. I don't think that it would have been too much to include a larger sized example of the letterform or a page that shows the entire set of glyphs for a particular font.
With that one exception aside, I really enjoyed Just My Type and would recommend it to anyone who is interested by type and its history.