New Font: BigBlok
A great many years ago when working in game publishing I had a real fascination with doing titles in a strong, super-bold font called Bolt Bold. The truth is I rather overused it. In doing some research I find it on more than a dozen different game books I wrote in the early 80s, all quite collectable and out of print today.
True Golden is one of the cornerstone fonts in our William Morris collection. It is a unique rendering of Morris' Golden type, which he based on samples of early Jensen typefaces. Our rendering of the style has a special, authentic lo[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview We've featured some articles on the designs of pulp novel covers from the mid-20th century, including s look at the fonts used in those designs. We've also released fonts based on those[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Escargot is based on lettering from the cover of an early pulp novel I came across a couple of months ago. It's a strong example of a distinctive style of sign and poster lettering fro[...]
Gelderland is a new font based on some very old typography, taken from samples of brass type from the early 19th century. It is characterized by its very detailed decorative capital letters, with multiple overlapping flourishes which[...]
We've done a number of fonts based on lettering by vintage calligrapher and design historian J. M. Bergling, including several with an Art Nouveau flavor like Boetia and Belgravia. Our newest font is in that same tradition, but it [...]
Langdon is our first new font of 2012. It's based on samples of hand-rendered poster lettering from the early 1900s by J. M. Bergling. It has a strong, distinctive look with demi-serifs and an art nouveau or art deco look. It's very m[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Potsdam was one of our earliest font releases, first produced in 1992 based on samples of 19th century decorative German type. It was one of our first fonts designed for MacIntosh computer users and fol[...]
Film director Sergei Eisenstein was a major influence on the Constructivist movement through his collaboration with Alexander Rodchenko and by inspiring other artists of the era. Thus it seems appropriate that the final font i[...]
We don't normally like to follow the same theme too much with our new font releases, but because we wanted to put together a special package of fonts by J. M. Bergling we're following the release of Beaumains with Bosphoros, another f[...]
When I was a kid I wasn't allowed to buy comic books, so when I began to earn some money of my own as a young teen, I hit that market right at the peak of the 1970s boom in alternative large-format comics which were much more salaci[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Quicksilver was designed as one of the original featured fonts included in our Psychedelic Fonts Package. It was developed into a full font from a sample of lettering from Quicksilver Messen[...]
I was playing around with some paint at our chicken coop and realized I had an opportunity to do some hands-on design work for a brush-style font, so I did a set of sample brush strokes on a piece of the recycled coroplast which cover[...]
We originally released Paleos back in 2002. It was inspired by kinds of titles used for B grade movies in the cavegirl/junglegirl genre. Movies so bad that they're good in a way that appeals to cult movie fans. The concept is that the[...]
Treadway is a new, original design in the tradition of futuristic advertising scripts of the mid-20th century, inspired by fonts like Kaufmann and Gillies, but with a stronger, more clearly defined look, stripped down to its most st[...]
When we did a font (and a feature article) recently based on a design by Alexander Rodchenko, the result was a very cool font, but while it was based on Rodchenko lettering, it is not the style most associated with his work. The ta[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview There's a peculiar style of letters that seems to only show up on some signs and letterpress posters and it caught my eye when I saw it being used in the recent poster for the National [...]
Alexander Rodchenko (1891–1956) was one of the premier artists of the constructivist movement in Russia. Although he was a sculptor, painter and photographer, he is most remembered for his graphic design style in book and poster desig[...]
Dromon has been one of our most popular and most successful display fonts. It's a modern, super-bold headline style with some clear ancestry in German gothic type design, but a unique and contemporary look. This new release of Dromo[...]
Vergennes was originally released in 2001 and is a stylish font which combines a simple lower case character set with highly decorative calligraphic initials. It is based on samples of lettering collected in Germany in the early 1900[...]
Optical Illusion Skull Images
Sometimes we stumble on strange backwaters of graphic arts history. One of those is the artistic tradition of creating images which appear normal, but also create a secondary image of a skull, an artistic optical illusion which was very popular it he late 19th and early 20th century, especially in France.
The most famous of these images is C. A. Gilbert’s 1892 sketch “All is Vanity” (see right) which depicts a girl seated at a vanity and admiring herself in a mirror, but if you ignore the details and focus on the whole image the various elements combine to create the appearance of a skull, making a point about the transitory nature of beauty.
As it turns out, Gilbert’s sketch inspired a trend and there are many other images from that period which are done in a similar style and producing a similar illusion, such as “L’Amour de Pierrot” which was produced in France in 1905 (see left). It depicts the characters Pierrot and Columbine and foreshadows a tragic outcome to their love.
When it comes to foreshadowing, none of these images is more on target than the politically motivated French 1894 cartoon “Familie Imperiale de Russie” which shows the Russian royal family inside a skull illusion.
In many cases these skull illusion pictures feature images of children or young lovers, drawing the contrast between youth and life and the inevitability of death, as shown in the examples shown below.
May 25, 2012 | Filed Under Found Art
One of our upcoming fonts is the result of an interesting project, developing original initials based on designs by Walter Crane. We recently acquired an obscure edition of French tales of Reynard the Fox illustrated by Crane with a series [more]
Silhouettes by Charles Folkard from Land of Nursery Rnyme Who killed Cock Robin? I, said the Sparrow, With my bow and arrow I killed Cock Robin. Chorus: All the birds in the air Fell a'sighing and a'sobbin[more]
Alphonse Mucha was born in what is now the Czech Republic in 1860 and moved to Paris in 1890 where he became the star of the poster-art movement under the patronage of the Sarah Bernhardt, socializing with the greatest of the impressionists[more]
I run into our fonts in the strangest places, but it was an unexpected surprise the other day when I was playing SongPop on my iPhone with my daughters and I got a pop-up ad for a iPhone game called War of the Fallen with the title done in [more]
In 1906 legendary illustrator Arthur Rackham was commissioned to illustrate J. M. Barrie's prequel to his play Peter Pan. The standard edition features 10 original illustrations, but there was also a very limited edition with 40 additional[more]
he Celts have been acclaimed for their remarkable artistic legacy - far more substantial than that of other ancient societies of Western Europe. They left behind a fascinating tradition of visual and literary art,and can be credited wi[more]
The National Day of the American Cowboy is sponsored by American Cowboy magazine, so while I was in the feed store I leafed through some issues of that magazine and also the companion magazine Cowboy Legends. It was in this later magazine [more]
Some while ago we added to our library an early 20th century book called Singing Games for Children which contains a dozen sets of detailed instructions for classic singing and dancing games for children - not the ones we're familiar with t[more]
Thanksgiving is almost upon us and it isa great time to celebrate family and the harvest and remember some history. Part of that history can be told in the form of unique fonts, including many which were created for special occasions to ad[more]
Eleanor Fortesque Brickdale was one of the great illustrators of the later Victorian era, even though she is not as well known as some of her male contemporaries. She was strongly influenced by the Pre-Raphaelites like Waterhouse and Mi[more]
I often find myself being surprised by art which I run into in unexpected places, or in contexts where I don't think about art as art because of its utilitarian application. I stumbled into a good example this weekend when I took my 11 y[more]
You can try out a sample border font for free. Click here to download the working trial version of Page Rules for either WINDOWS or MacOS One of the traditions in type design over the years has been t[more]
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