Rediscovering the Art of the Book Cover

Rediscovering the Art of the Book Cover

In my endless perambulation of the web I stumble upon all sorts of sources of design inspiration, some of them intentional expressions of design ideas and others more accidental and serendipitous. One example in the latter category is Cover Browser, a site which features nothing but images of the covers of books, comic books, and magazines. I have no idea …


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Art Encounter: Jeff Truth Design

Last week I featured a lot of classic poster designers from the Flatstock 24 show, so to balance things out I thought I’d include a quick plug for a local Austin poster designer whose style is much less traditional than most of those at that show. Jeff Truth‘s designs are much more derivative from the tradition of punk poster design …


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Review: Flatstock 24 at SXSW

As an Austinite, no amount of effort can keep me from being aware of the South by Southwest festival.  It takes over the city for almost two weeks, makes travel impossible, and fills every coffee shop with unkempt hipsters with man-purses and Zach Galifianakis beards. I manage to avoid most of the activities, mainly because I can't see paying thousands …


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On the Shelves: New Boardgames

Browsing the shelves at our local game store, Great Hall Games in Austin, I ran into some pleasant surprises when I found several of our fonts on the being used in recent boardgame releases. First to catch my eye was the massive box of the fantasy boardgame Descent: Journeys in the Dark from Fantasy Flight Games. It’s another in the …


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Classic Font: Beaumarchais

Beaumarchais was one of our earlier font designs, part of a series of display and title fonts we released in the early 1990s based on Art Nouveau period designs. It was later used in a publishing venture we were partners in as the primary title font for the card game Quest for the Grail at which time it was revised …


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The Dream Tarot Revisited

This article originally appeared in 2006. An additional card graphic has been added since the original article, based on the parameters established in the dream and representing the Hands suit which is not in the original graphic and featuring art by Walter Crane. The other night I found myself sitting at a table with the crusty old men of the …


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New Font: Cascade

In looking through our fonts for something to use on a project my teenage daughter complained that we don’t have enough fonts which feature characters with decorative inside the character form. We have a lot of decorative initials, but only a few fonts where the decoration is inside the character rather than surrounding the character. The two most notable examples …


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Sighting: Buccaneer in Starbucks

It seems our fonts have invaded the world of “corporate coffee.” Earlier this week, while picking up a coffee for my daughter at the local Starbucks I noticed that they were selling mugs labeled “Austin,” presumably in an effort to make them seem less corporate and generic and more tied in to our local culture. Having no larger interest in …


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Classic Font: Delaguerra

Back in 2001 we were approached by the Santa Barbara Historical Society to develop a new font based on a style of lettering used on inscriptions on a number of historical buildings in downtown Santa Barbara. The result was the Delaguerra font which we named after the street where the historical society and many of the historic buildings are located. …


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Projects In Development

Here at the Scriptorium we’re constantly working on new projects, drawing on material in our remarkable library of antique books of illustration, design and typography and on original designs as well. At any time we have 3 to 5 projects in various stages of development, from scanning images to designing fonts, to assembling material to create new packages of fonts …


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Joyeuse Font

Joyeuse is one of our earliest developments of a really high-end font. It is based on samples of early 20th century metal type derived from a popular variant of William Morris’ Troy Typewhich deviated a lot from the original source design, but has much of the same stylish gothic revival look and feel. We originally released Joyeuse in 1992 and …


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Sighting: Valdemar Font in Age of Misrule

While browsing through our local bookstore over the holiday weekend my eye was caught by a whole series of books which were using our Valdemar font prominently. The Age of Misrule book series by Mark Chadbourn features Valdemar as the main title for the series, so it appears on all the books in the series — three have been published …


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Color Harmony Guide

Before we had fancy programs like Photoshop with dozens of color palettes and millions of colors and Pantone charts and magical color wheels and all the miracles of modern technology, we still had color to be selected and applied by more primitive methods. And while we don’t think about it much today, the range of colors we could perceive was …


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A Little Guide to Bookbinding

In our ongoing acquisition of antique graphic arts resources we’ve recently been looking for books by Pedro J. Lemos who was the Director of the Stanford University Fine Arts Museum. Lemos wrote extensively on graphic arts, lettering and design in the early 20th century. Lemos’ work draws on the Arts and Crafts and Art Deco movements of the period and …


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The Dark Shadows Font Project

My name is Victoria Winters… For almost five years those were the words which greeted me when I got home from school at 4:30 and sat down infront of the small black and white television in our kitchen to watch with wonder as the convoluted gothic narrative of the cursed inhabitants of Collinswood unfolded half-hour by half-hour in Dark Shadows. …


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