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How I became a type designer.
Decades ago, I sat in the chilly offices of International Typeface Corporation and, in the glow of a space heater, listened to Director of Typeface Development, Ilene Strizver suggest that I could make fonts. Today, more than a score of years and fonts later, Ilene has honored me with...
Deadline tomorrow afternoon? No problem.
During the past few months, I've illustrated a weekly piece for the NY Times Real Estate section. It's a Q and A about the trials of apartment living, with reponses from real estate and legal professionals. I love nothing more than getting a manscript, panicking, and forging...
A new font and ancient story
"In mythological legend, Chloris, the goddess of Spring flowers transformed the body of a nymph into the first Rose. Aphrodite gave her beauty. Dionysus, the god of wine gave her, a sweet fragrance and the three Graces, charm, joy and radiance. Crowned queen of flowers by Apollo, she is...
La crème mains est arrivé
I've had the privilege of designing a great line of products for La Société Parisienne de Savons. There are 20 different fragrances, each with a unique design motif including soaps, creams, powders, candles, fragrance diffusers, ceramic soap dishes and, a few more...
Scared the crop out of me
In addition to enamel signs, matchbook covers, cigar bands, vintage tins and more, fruit crate labels hold a lofty position among the inspirations for my work. Their deep, rich colors and decorative typography provide a splendid tableau to tell a story that delights as well as, informs. The...
If it worked once before...
Sometimes, you just have to get things wrong before you get them right. Such was the case with a cover of New Jersey Monthly for the very kind and understanding Laura Baer. I started out sketching a bunch of tired dentist clichés. We narrowed them down to one with an awards plaque. I...
36 Days of Type
I recently played a game on Instagram where everyone posted a different letter of the alphabet each day. It's fascinating to see what your contemporaries, both professional and otherwise, come up with. Especially cool is that they were from all around the world. I went back and,...
Everything you always wanted to know about type: but were afraid to ask.
There was a time when type was created by a small number of artisans, trained by apprenticeship to the masters who preceded them. Creating fonts was a painstaking, tedious process and those ubiquitous symbols were shown respect and reverence. As befitting such vital resources, they were...
My lucky number(s)
People love to keep track of numbers, quantities, awards, rankings anniversaries and such. Since I know most of the numbers by heart, I often get to illustrate them on magazine covers for subjects such as "The 100 scariest Zombie movies of all time" or "37 of Cleveland's...
Victor Vaissier, Le Roi du Congo
Victor Vaissier was a much beloved figure In France at the end of the 19th century. In 1887 he named the company he had inherited from his father Savonnerie du Congo. With nationwide advertising campaigns and participation in a number universal exhibitions, he attained stunning success with his...