Type Design Books Collection

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Eryk Kosinski
Eryk Kosinski Posts: 72
edited February 2023 in Education
How big is the collection of books type design community uses and which of them do you recommend to learn? Three books I own are "Designing Type" by Karen Cheng, "Theory of Type Design" by Gerard Unger and "The Anatomy of Type" by Stephen Coles. 

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  • Thomas Phinney
    Thomas Phinney Posts: 2,808
    edited February 2023
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    Do you have the second edition of Cheng’s book? It adds a great deal of material compared to the original.

    My other top recommendation would be How to Create Typefaces: from sketch to screen by Henestrosa, Meseguer and Scaglione. A great book and an excellent companion to Cheng’s book. Hard to find from anywhere other than St Bride: https://stbridelibrary.bigcartel.com/product/how-to-create-typefaces, although there are a few bookstores worldwide that have it.

    Also, are you Polish, and is that your native language? I ask because this book is available in Polish, as well as the original Spanish, plus Portuguese and English.

  • John Hudson
    John Hudson Posts: 3,060
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    I second Tom’s recommendation.

    Some others:

    Creative Lettering Today by Michael Harvey (several editions; try to find the 1996 edition, which has the largest section on digital type design).

    The Stroke by Gerrit Noordzij  (originally in Dutch, 1985; English translation by Peter Enneson published by Hyphen Press in 2005).

    Letters of Credit by Walter Tracy (1986).

    Looking at my bookshelves, I have far more books about using type than I do about designing type, and I have probably learned more from them. There are also some very educational books about the work of individual type designers, and even about specific typefaces, that are well worth studying.
  • James Puckett
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    The ABC of Custom Lettering by Castro

    Lettering for Advertising by Leach

    The Logo, Font, and Lettering Bible by Cabarga

    Fonts and Logos by Young

    Theory of Type Design by Unger

    Anatomy of a Typeface by Lawson

    The History and Technique of Lettering by Nesbitt

    How to Create Typefaces by Henestrosa, Meseguer, and Scaglione

    • Designing Fonts by Campe and Rausch

    • Custom Lettering of the The 20s & 30s, 40s & 50s, and 60s & 70s by Hughes


  • Eryk Kosinski
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    Do you have the second edition of Cheng’s book? It adds a great deal of material compared to the original.

    My other top recommendation would be How to Create Typefaces: from sketch to screen by Henestrosa, Meseguer and Scaglione. A great book and an excellent companion to Cheng’s book. Hard to find from anywhere other than St Bride: https://stbridelibrary.bigcartel.com/product/how-to-create-typefaces, although there are a few bookstores worldwide that have it.

    Also, are you Polish, and is that your native language? I ask because this book is available in Polish, as well as the original Spanish, plus Portuguese and English.

    Yes, I do have the second edition.
  • Eryk Kosinski
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    Yes I am Polish, but live in UK for years now and prefer to do everything in English.

  • Nick Shinn
    Nick Shinn Posts: 2,169
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    I haven’t read most of the books mentioned, but I can recommend:

    The Modification of Letter Forms by Stanley Hess, Art Direction Book Company, 1971/82.