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The only pipe

Did you see that “read this email in your browser” link in the email version of this issue? It might’ve not looked particularly exciting, but if you chose to click or tap it, you’ll notice this (hopefully) improved online version, which now lives on my website. And of course feel free to browse the whole archives, which now live at elliotjaystocks.com/newsletter. Massive thanks to my friend (and former business partner) Keir, who’s been helping me with this integration.

On the face of it, this is a small and insignificant change, and probably no-one but me will care, but this integration work is an important piece of a wider effort to help me consolidate — and grow — all of these various typographic projects I’ve got going on. This newsletter. The podcast. The book. The workshops. Either way, if you do care about these nerdy details (and I know a few of you are guilty of that), let me know and I’ll probably blog about it at some point. Expect to see some design changes to the newsletter soon, too.

The first thing I absolutely have to tell you, right at the top, is that my forthcoming book, Universal Principles of Typography, has been pushed back a little: it’ll now be out on 16th April in the US, and 18th April in the UK. I’ve updated the “book” page on my site with some handy pre-order links, and I’ll update it again with photos of the actual book once I receive my advance copy — hopefully, in a couple of weeks.

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Related to that, if you’re in or near Bristol on 24th April, please come along to the book’s launch party! Apparently the publisher is just waiting for the venue (a really lovely bookshop) to confirm, and as soon as they have, I’ll post some details. For now, though — save the date!

If you’re in the mood for lovely, type-y, printed things, Counter-Print have just published Three Dimensional Type and you can now buy their ‘Graphic Design Book Set’ bundle — consisting of Big Type, Colour Clash, Mascot, Optic, and Three Dimensional Type — for £10 less than their individual prices.

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A new foundry discover for me: Studio Buchanan. I love the fonts. I love the website. I love it all. And look at those cute little animations!

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Last issue, I mentioned Now24, the conference from the TypeParis team that’s happening on 1st June. The window for the early bird tickets has now closed, but ne t’inquiète pas, mes amis, because my promo code will still get you €30 off! Just use “SUPERNOW24” and you can pick up a ticket for €140. I’m going. Let’s hang!

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Speaking of events, Neon Moiré has a helpful round-up of the various type- and typography-related conferences, classes, and meetups happening around the world. Nice to see Bristol’s own Letter Luvvers on there.

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Hungry for another event? Well, the website for Typographics 2024 is live! (Lovely work as always from Nick Sherman.) The conference is happening on 14th and 15th June at The Cooper Union in New York. I can’t go to this one, sadly. Maybe one year.

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Since the last issue, I’ve released not one but two new episodes of my podcast, Hello, type friends! The first was with Emma Luczyn (who designed my logo)…

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… and the second was with Francis Chouquet. You can listen to both of these episodes — and indeed all of them — on hellotypefriends.com, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and anywhere you get your podcasts.

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My buddy Ty Finck has released a bundle that contains a one single weight from each of the 10 typefaces in his catalogue and it’s… free!

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I just discovered Café Typô“a blog dedicated to the codes and uses of typography” — thanks to a link from The League of Moveable type’s newsletter. Bruno’s articles on the history of currency symbols are particularly interesting. While reading the one on the £ symbol, it occurred to me that I’ve never thought of it as being derived from an uppercase “L”. Not once. Anyone else?

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Smashing Magazine recently published an article, written by my good friend Jamie Clarke and LTTR/INK’s Filip Palida, on AI’s potential impact on type design and typography. Jamie and I have been talking in the pub for months now about what AI could mean for the type design industry, so it’s great to see his thoughts out there.

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Speaking of Smashing, I’m running another Typography Masterclass for them in May. As before, it’s 5 × 2-hour sessions over 3 weeks. Just yesterday, I came across a LinkedIn post from someone who’d posted about the workshop. He said this:

“I’ve been to one of his masterclasses and can definitely recommend it to someone who wants to get really advanced information on typography. In my experience, it is difficult to find what he is teaching for free — books or articles are boring, and information on YouTube, even though entertaining, lacks the depth and cases that you need when you want to actually apply knowledge. So, if you want to master typography, this workshop is for you.”

That was so encouraging to read. Thank you, Vadim!

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OH no Type Co have just released Forevs. It’s beautiful, of course. And James’ write-up of the process makes for a great read.

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Very cool new typeface, Maligna, from Zetafonts. Interesting interview with its designer, Valerio Monopoli, too. I like that the article is set in the typeface itself. More sites should do this.

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You’ve probably seen that Monotype have published their 2024 Type Trends report. I just got the PDF and I’m looking forward to digging in.

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Type Design Resources is a new (I think?) website that collects — you guessed it — type design resources. But actually there are loads of other type-adjacent links on there, too. (Maybe I should submit my podcast and this newsletter, even?)

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Dan Cederholm (a Hello, type friends! alumnus, among other things) has just launched his Simple Type Club“a very special calendar-year 2024 subscription which bundles all of our typefaces along with other great perks.” I’m a member and I’ve started using Vault Alarm straight away on a branding project for a friend.

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Rejoice! Because it’s now easier than ever to get fonts from Google Fonts! My friend and former GF colleague Tobias Kunisch has written an article on the Material blog that nicely summarises the changes to GF’s UX. Generally it all hinges around the “one simple button”, but there are some important changes to the way variable fonts are delivered via the API, too, and this means you no longer have to hack the URL to get the range working.

“The previous version […] made you select specific styles from the axes included in our variable fonts that would be delivered as static instances. Now, important axes like weight and optical size will be delivered as full axes via the API by default.”

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Jason Santa Maria has released his first ever typeface! It’s called Chonk and it only costs $5.

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Typlr is a forthcoming app — the beta kicks off at some point this year, apparently — for designing type in the browser. I’ll be keeping my eye on this one.

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And apparently Typlr isn’t the only browser-based type design app. Just yesterday I came across Fontra via a post by Olli Meier about his contributions to the project. The app is from Just van Rossum / Gaetan Baehr / Black Foundry — what a team!

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I think this launched at the end of 2023, but Fontstand now offers a foundry subscription, meaning that you can subscribe to just your favourite foundries and use all of their fonts. It’s an interesting new licensing idea.

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This is not in any way related to typography, but if you like to-do list apps or productivity tools in general (I know I do), you might want to check out Superlist, a new to-do list app from the original makers of Wunderlist. I’m not sure this can replace Things for me, but I guess it depends how you GTD.

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Also not type-related, but if you’re in any way interested in folks who publish newsletters, or vaguely aware of the recent furore with Substack, you might enjoy listening to this recent episode of The Vergecast, in which Nilay Patel (The Verge’s Editor-in-Chief) and Casey Newton (former editor at The Verge and founder of Platformer) discuss Casey’s decision to move from Substack to Ghost. Particularly interesting that Casey and Nilay conclude that — for now — email is “the only distribution pipe.” [57:14] For fairly obvious reasons, this really resonates with me, and relates very much to the work I’ve been doing behind-the-scenes with Keir that I mentioned in my intro.

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Lastly, some of you may have noticed me mentioning a forthcoming new type project on Threads or Mastodon.

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I can’t really say much more about it at this stage except that, as you’re a subscriber to this newsletter, I’m fairly confident it’s something you’re going to be interested in.

Thanks for reading and please do email me if you’d like to geek out about any of the above — I always respond.


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