Tackling the Greek


In recent years the demand for new typefaces to cover the Greek script has grown dramatically. Pan-european character sets have become the minimum expectation for branding and corporate projects, and the migration of publishers to new print-on-demand and online viewing has spurned further development. Job ads for typeface designers increasingly list the ability to design Greek as a requirement for senior posts. So, developing skills in Greek typeface design is good for your career. But there is another good reason to tackle Greek: balancing its variation in forms and low degree of modularity within a brief that may require a very even typographic texture presents a rewarding challenge to any designer. And, when there is room to extend the style, the calligraphic roots of the script present a wonderful opportunity for exploration and invention.

This workshop will pack in one day the basics for starting to design Greek typefaces, particularly for designers who already have completed Latin typefaces and are interested in extending their existing Latin ones. Gerry will give both letter-by-letter advice and paragraph-level comments. We will review some key recent Greek typefaces, and give direct feedback on typefaces submitted by the workshop participants.



A New Bilingual Lexicon

Gerry Leonidas will talk about the forthcoming Greek-English Intermediate Lexicon, a major new publication that he designed for Cambridge University Press, now in its final stages. The Lexicon sought to break with a typographic tradition for reference works going back to the nineteenth century, and take advantage of recent advances in typeface design. The hierarchy of information represented a particularly challenging typographic environment, which in turn offered a unique opportunity to design the Lexicon by taking full advantage of contemporary typeface families. Gerry will explore the typographic problems in the Lexicon, outline the questions raised by the project on the planning of type families, and comment on the differentiation of scripts for parallel use. The talk will underline the role of typeface design in high-end typography, and offer insights into the design of a document that will have a shelf life measured in decades.

Keywords: lexicon, information design, type families, type design, scripts, bibliophily.


Event Details

Date: 16 & 17 June, 2012
Time: 16:30–17:00 (Lecture, June 16) & 9:00–18:00 (Workshop, June 17)

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