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Subject: Re: Newspaper Type Design
From: Hrant H Papazian <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Discussion of Type and Typographic Design <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sat, 10 Mar 2001 07:28:42 -0800
Content-Type:text/plain
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"Rolf F. Rehe" wrote:
>> http://www.themicrofoundry.com/other/armnewsp.gif
> It seems to include structural elements from
> the Latin alphabet and yet to have its identity.

But it's too Latin. I don't mean just in terms of
cultural authenticity (at least for a text faces;
display faces are much more free to borrow from
other cultures), but functionality too.

> What is the history of it?

It's a 90's digital font. Based on Helvetica, but more "sober":
no funny things like the curl at the foot of the lc "a".

> Is it a descendant of the Phoenician/Greek/Roman
> trait or does it come from another tradition?

Wait a second: are you talking about the font, or the
Armenian alphabet? The font comes from Helvetica, like
I said, but the alphabet was invented by Mesrob Mashdots
about 1500 years ago - some say based on Greek, but I've
recently heard some expert opinion that the Greek influence
came in later, changing the much more angular originals
to what we have now. Note that this applies to the UC.
The Armenian lc was created much like the Latin (through
optimization of scribal writing) in the 11th century.

> It seems easy to the eye.

It's calm and serious, but the resultant boumas are way
too homogenous. It's a good display face. It's funny (or sad)
that the most typographically intelligent Armenian newspaper
uses a display face for text... That's because almost every
single Armenian "text" face is way too ornate - mostly because
they have serifs sprouting from every corner! I'm hoping that
my semi-serif approach will open a new door.

> [Semi-serif] is a type category, IMHO, in which much
> development is possible (I refer primarily but not
> exclusively to the Latin glyphs).

Note that the Latin component of Nour follows the same path
as the Armenian: gently slanted, semi-serif, somewhat rigid.
After I drew it I started thinking maybe it's the type of
solution that Morison was looking for, in his quest for
the slanted roman. But my design is not like an italic
companion to a roman face, it *is* the "roman" face.

BTW, there are some Latin semi-serifs out there,
but they tend to lean to much to the sans side.
And they tend to be too "soft".

One font I find very significant is Bloemsma's latest, Avance:
http://www.fontfont.de/packages/avance11159/avance11159.html
The web image does nothing to convey it's true nature,
the FontFont catalog is much better.

> I hope you keep us informed of the development of your design.

Well, if you insist...  ;-)

hhp

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