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Littlebit

Littlebit

September 6, 2022

Sometimes we come across work that we created way in the past and it brings a smile to our faces. Littlebit is a typeface that was originally created by Rudy VanderLans in 1985, although it wasn’t called Littlebit back then. Actually it didn’t have a name, because it didn’t exist as an actual font. It was created as a series of letters using MacPaint, one of the first drawing programs that came standard with the Apple Mac 128K. To set words, VanderLans would simply “cut and paste” the letters together in MacPaint.

Those letters were first used in Emigre #3 (1985) and Emigre #4 (1986) to create a headline that read “Boundaries Ignored.” Then we never used it again. We’re not sure why. Probably it was pushed aside or forgotten by an onslaught of new type designs we were working on in those days.

So after 37 years we removed the cobwebs, blew off the dust, took a close look at it, and realized it would be worthwhile to complete the character set and turn it into a usable typeface. Of course, since we are designers, who can’t leave well enough alone, we made a few changes, mostly to the proportions and to some of the character shapes, and then also added 19 variations based on the same basic model.

Working on Littlebit felt like we’ve come full circle, back to where we started when we were using bitmaps as our building blocks to make letters. And while the tools to produce fonts are now extremely sophisticated, allowing for unlimited formal expression, it’s still creatively satisfying, sometimes, to set restrictions and reduce choice to generate simplified yet readable letter forms.

You can download a free PDF version of the 32-page Littlebit type specimen from the Emigre website. https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens/Littlebit

And if you're on the Emigre mailing list, you'll receive a printed version within the next month or so. https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens

Emigre Fonts App

Check out the Emigre Fonts App. View and read all pages of the entire collection of Emigre Fonts type specimens, and all issues of Emigre magazine, in this easy-to-use app made for graphic designers and type aficionados alike. Download for free from the Apple Store.


Tally

Tally

April 5, 2022

Tally is another Emigre Fonts type specimen in disguise. This one presents the indexing data derived from the hundreds of pictures of California published by Rudy VanderLans between 2006 and 2021.

VanderLans had a lot of spare time on his hands these last two years since he didn’t travel nor socialize much. So he decided to take inventory of his California photographs. It should be obvious by now that he loves taking pictures of California. This started innocently enough, but has grown into a full-blown obsession with the ultimate goal to cover the entire Golden State. The effort so far has resulted in 479 pictures published in three books and an ongoing series of small magazines. To measure where he’s currently at in his impossible pursuit, VanderLans compiled as much data about these pictures as he could assemble, and displayed the info in this engaging typographic catalog using a wide selection of typefaces from the Emigre Fonts library.

You can download a free PDF version from the Emigre website.
https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens/Tally

And if you're on the Emigre mailing list, you'll receive a printed version within the next month or so.
https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens

Bonus: Emigre fonts are available as part of your Adobe Creative Cloud subscription. https://fonts.adobe.com/foundries/emigre

Emigre Fonts App
Check out the brand new Emigre Fonts App. View and read all pages of the entire collection of Emigre Fonts type specimens, and all issues of Emigre magazine, in this easy-to-use app made for graphic designers and type aficionados alike. Download for free from the Apple Store.


Emigre Fonts App

Emigre Fonts App

March 21, 2022

View and read all pages of the entire collection of Emigre Fonts type specimens, and all issues of Emigre magazine, in this easy-to-use app made for graphic designers and type aficionados alike. Download for free from the Apple Store.

  • Browse all Emigre type specimens and magazines published since 1984.
  • See how Emigre ignited the digital revolution in type design.
  • Zoom in on every typographic detail.
  • Peruse every Emigre magazine essay and interview in their original layouts.
  • Read up on the dialogues that circulated around graphic design in the 1990s.
  • View the layouts that made Emigre both revered and reviled.

Oleander Sunset

Oleander Sunset

August 10, 2021

Inspired by artists like Edward Curtis and Charles Schulz, who devoted their lives to a single objective, Rudy VanderLans continues his pursuit to create a consistent body of work of postcard-size images, rendering a comprehensive portrait of California in the early part of the 21st century.

VanderLans, who is often drawn to places with fantastical names — like Oleander Sunset — wanders about California’s back roads with eyes wide open. Without theorizing, or searching for subjects, he allows himself to be receptive to the world around him and discovers beauty in the most ordinary locales. Like the men who named the cities and towns he visits, VanderLans makes the mundane seem less so, and in the process shows us what’s been overlooked.

Oleander Sunset juxtaposes single images on opposing pages, setting up dynamic formal and contextual interactions through contrasting, complementing and reiteration. The book is interspersed with a number of fold-out panoramas, placing the viewer smack in the middle of the author’s habitual stamping ground.

Available from your local bookstore, or through gingkopress.com

Order a copy directly from Emigre before August 31st, and we’ll send along a free copy of the Joshua Tree book, plus a few other surprises.


Four Letter Words

Four Letter Words

February 23, 2021

"Make it bigger" is an often heard client suggestion that can drive graphic designers mad. But sometimes things actually do look better when big. We picked twenty-six fonts from the Emigre Library that we think look really good when used at a large size and gave them ample real estate to display their distinguishing details.

Designed by Rudy VanderLans, this thirty-two-page type specimen features typefaces by Mr. Keedy, Jonathan Barnbrook, Zuzana Licko, Elliott Earls, Sibylle Hagmann and many others. Each typeface is used to spell out a four letter word suitable for print.

You can download a free PDF version from the Emigre website.
https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens/FourLetterWords

And if you're on the Emigre mailing list, you’ll receive a printed version within the next month or so.
https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens

Bonus: Emigre fonts are available as part of your Adobe Creative Cloud subscription.
https://fonts.adobe.com/foundries/emigre


Printed Type Specimens for Sale

Printed Type Specimens for Sale

September 21, 2020

You can download most of Emigre’s type specimens for free as PDF files. But if you’re like us, and believe that nothing beats print, now is your opportunity to add to your library of printed type specimen catalogs.

For the first time in years we are making our back catalog of printed Emigre font catalogs available for sale. These are vintage type specimens of some of our most popular fonts such as Mrs Eaves, Program, Puzzler, Alda, Cardea and Vista.

Designed by Rudy VanderLans, these catalogs go beyond their primary function as sales tools. By creating specific contexts, the booklets were produced to be enjoyed as much for the design of the typefaces as for the engaging content.

If you missed out on any of these, or want to replace an old copy, now is your chance to enhance your collection. Limited availability.


Days of Discourse Past

Days of Discourse Past

August 4, 2020

The final six issues of Emigre magazine, co-published with Princeton Architectural Press from 2003-2005, are now available as free PDF downloads from the Emigre website.

These six pocket-book sized volumes were a final effort by Emigre to highlight and encourage critical writing within graphic design. We believed that design, as a cultural force, was worthy of an evaluative look, so we turned an inquisitive eye on our profession.

All six issues have sold out years ago. We’re now making them available for free to anybody who’d like to revisit or who missed the excitement of the often heated debates that were circulating within graphic design during the early years of the 21st century.

Featuring essays by Mr. Keedy, Kenneth FitzGerald, Lorraine Wild, Andrew Blauvelt, David Cabianca, Rudy VanderLans, Katherine McCoy, David Barringer, Gerard Unger, and interviews with Experimental Jetset, Peter Bilak, Louise Sandhaus, Ian Anderson, and many others.


Chowdown

Chowdown

May 26, 2020

The next Emigre Fonts catalog is here! Chowdown, is a type specimen in disguise, featuring 21 recipes cooked-up by Zuzana Licko. Compiled from a loose collection of scribbled comments on sticky notes and index cards filled with recipes that Licko and her husband Rudy VanderLans have been enjoying over the years, they are now sharing some of their favorites with you in this collection. Each recipe is paired with a delectable font freshly handpicked from the Emigre fonts library.

This scrumptious 64-pager was edited by Maria Zizka, author of The Newlywed Table cookbook, and garnished with a brand new picture font named Chowdown by Bay Area artist Tucker Nichols.

You can download a free PDF version of the Chowdown cookbooklet from the Emigre website.
https://www.emigre.com/Fonts/Chowdown


Anywhere, California

Anywhere, California

May 12, 2020

“Anywhere, California” is another close look by Rudy VanderLans into the cultural landscape of his favorite subject, the Golden State. Whether it’s the garage where Apple started in Los Altos, or the former location where the Manson Family lived in Chatsworth, or an anonymous abandoned storefront in Calexico, VanderLans finds beauty in the unlikeliest of locations. Yet he rarely divulges the why or what of his photographs. Instead he stresses that things aren’t always what they appear to be, leaving much to the imagination of the reader.

Stylistically diverse, and meticulously composed, his pictures are as sundry in nature as California itself. Presented in unencumbered page layouts, with well-considered sequencing, this publication is another testament to VanderLans’ dual mastery of design and photography. It continues his preference for the book format as his primary vehicle to exhibit his photography, making this limited first edition another instant collectible.

Available from your local bookstore, or through gingkopress.com and emigre.com.


Emigre at the Online Archive

Emigre at the Online Archive

April 21, 2020

The much anticipated online version of the San Francisco-based Letterform Archive is now public! Enjoy unprecedented virtual access to nearly 1,500 objects and 9,000 hi-fi images (and counting!) from their collection, free of charge. For all the students and designers taking shelter at home, we hope this will bring a little inspiration to the world.

Besides some of design's most iconic artifacts, this treasure trove includes the full run of all 69 issues of Emigre magazine, to be accessed, read and explored, from cover to cover, in super high resolution. With extensive cataloguing data accompanying each entry, this is the ultimate source for researchers, educators and graphic design aficionados alike.

Please go and explore this wonderful archive! We know this is a trying time for many people, but if you’re able to support the Letterform Archive and the work they’re doing, consider doing so by making a gift to their new home or a one-time donation of an amount of your choosing, ensuring that their archive will be freely available to everyone forever.


Emigre Fonts on Creative Cloud

Emigre Fonts on Creative Cloud

January 12, 2020

Did you know? The Emigre Fonts Library (nearly 500 fonts) is available through the Adobe Creative Cloud service! This is a great worry-free solution for most of your desktop and web font needs. And it’s included in your Creative Cloud subscription, at no extra cost to you. You have all the Emigre fonts right at your fingertips, just click the "Activate font" toggle switch and the font is instantly available to all your desktop applications. This simple license to use Emigre fonts is valid for as long as you subscribe to Creative Cloud.

If you prefer to have a perpetual license and/or want to self-host web fonts, you can order directly from Emigre or our resellers. We can also help you with specialty licenses for servers, games and other dynamic content applications, or any other license not covered by the Adobe Fonts license.

If you have licensing questions, email us at sales@emigre.com

Bonus: when you order a font direct from Emigre, we’ll mail you a selection of Emigre’s award winning type specimens.


Merch & More

Merch & More

December 3, 2019

Once again, by popular demand, we have brought back the “Design is a Good Idea” T-shirt. This time we also added a canvas Tote Bag and a Notepad with letterpress printed cover. Beware: these items are printed in limited editions.

While you’re visiting our online store, check out our Merch & More section for artist books by Rudy VanderLans, Emigre music releases, and Zuzana Licko’s most recent one-of-a-kind ceramics and pictorial weavings.


Crackly

Crackly

August 14, 2019

Crackly is a pattern font that follows in the footsteps of Licko’s previous release, Tangly. Instead of curved lines, Crackly is composed from straight lines that intersect at various angles.

The idea for Crackly came from Licko’s ceramic sculptures. She was composing stacked totems from modular cones and disks of various sizes and angles, and to help visualize these shapes in different combinations, she made herself a font so she could type out various sculpture compositions before assembling them.

Recognizing that the font itself had potential, Licko worked on adapting the elements into square proportions that could be rotated and connected. Many of the resulting patterns create illusions of depth with incongruous perspectives, reminiscent of Cubism and M.C. Esher’s work.

As Licko was experimenting with the Crackly patterns, it occurred to her that the compositions would make excellent graphics for coloring, so we decided to make a coloring book disguised as a type specimen. Or vice versa?

What Crackly adds to the coloring book phenomenon, though, is that you can use these pattern fonts to make compositions, print them out on your laser printer, and generate your own coloring pages. We imagine that kids and adults alike can enjoy the experience of getting lost in the moment of experimentation and coloring. Or you can use Crackly for any other pattern applications, such as endpapers or backgrounds. The options are limitless.

You can download a free PDF version of the Emigre Coloring Book from the Emigre website. https://www.emigre.com/Fonts/Crackly

And if you're on the Emigre mailing list, you’ll receive a printed version within the next month or so. https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens


San Francisco Art Book Fair

San Francisco Art Book Fair

July 19, 2019

Come check out the Emigre booth at the San Francisco Art Book Fair this weekend. We’ll have a selection of our latest releases and old favorites for sale, including photo books, Emigre magazine back issues, type specimens, music, vintage T-shirts, tote bags, caps, and lots of giveaways.

Emigre, Booth M22, Minnesota Street Project
1275 Minnesota Street, San Francisco

Hours: Friday, July 19, 6 – 10pm
Saturday, July 20, 11am – 6pm
Sunday, July 21, 11am – 5pm


Notes on Filosofia

Notes on Filosofia

May 21, 2019

Notes on Filosofia is an overview of the design and general history of one of Emigre’s most popular fonts. Filosofia was designed in 1996 by Zuzana Licko and is based on Bodoni’s cut of Filosofia 3 Siena. Licko designed Filosofia largely from memory. After closely studying a copy of Giambattista Bodoni’s “Manuale Tipografico” (1818) at the Bancroft Library in Berkeley, California, she started her first sketches by drawing directly on the computer using Fontographer. The resulting design shows Licko’s personal preference for a geometric Bodoni, while incorporating such features as the slightly bulging round serif endings which often appeared in printed samples of Bodoni’s work and reflect Bodoni’s origins in letterpress technology. This brand new type specimen, designed by Rudy VanderLans, recalls those early events, as well as other highlights in the life of this wonderful typeface.

You can download a free PDF version from the Emigre website.
https://www.emigre.com/Fonts/Filosofia

And if you're on the Emigre mailing list, you’ll receive a printed version within the next month or so.
https://www.emigre.com/TypeSpecimens


Pillows & Ceramics

Pillows & Ceramics

December 5, 2018

Cozy up this winter with Tangly pillows and handmade ceramics by Zuzana Licko.

During the design process of Tangly, her most recent pattern font design, Licko experimented by applying these intricate motifs onto different fabrics, including jacquard weaves, to see how these Tangly patterns could be utilized. She then sewed many of these fabric samples into different sized pillows, enjoying the results, which lead to her decision to make them available commercially. Many of her patterns can now be ordered on a variety of fabrics and sewn to order into pillows and other housewares.

A few times a year Licko also produces small sets of hand thrown ceramic vases. With their bright red, orange and green glazes, or muted black and white tones on various shades of stoneware, these simple yet elegant vases will fit any decor.

In addition, Zuzana has recently expanded her ceramic range into producing garden sculptures. Composed from modular handmade pieces, with a nod to mid-century modern, the geometric forms repeat playfully, complementing both plants and architecture. The unglazed stoneware echoes the color palette of terra-cotta planters, and they can be installed both indoor or outdoor.

Throw pillows with Tangly patterns
12" x12" printed and jacquard woven pillows are available at Etsy.
18” x 18" made to order pillows are available at Roostery.

Handmade ceramics
Ceramic Vases at Emigre.
Ceramic Planters and Vases at Etsy.

Garden Cones
Ceramic sculptures, at home indoors and out.
White Garden Cones.
Terra Cotta Garden Cones.

In stores
If you are in the San Francisco bay area, Zuzana’s ceramics are available at:
Abrams Claghorn Gallery: 1251 Solano Avenue, Albany, California
Celery Space: 1714 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, California

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Still Lifes, Tokyo

Still Lifes, Tokyo

November 27, 2018

Comprising more than two hundred photos taken over the course of three weeks, the third book in the Still Lifes series leaves the United States for the busy streets of Tokyo, resulting in a volume that is both of a piece with and dramatically different from Still Lifes, California and Still Lifes, USA. The roughly translated advertising blurb for the Tokyo hotel where Rudy VanderLans booked his stay promised “a world of stillness and motion,” and VanderLans used this as his creative prompt. Over the course of his stay, VanderLans walked over a hundred miles, camera in hand, capturing an extensive document of Tokyo’s lived-in details. Just as much care has been taken in the arrangement of the photos, with adjacent images often mirroring one another despite their wildly different subjects. Conspicuously devoid of human figures for such a populous city, these photos capture a Tokyo beneath the surface of the crowd, presenting a version of the city rarely seen in media of any kind.

Available in selected bookstores, or at emigre.com.


Tangly Lines and Tangly Splines

Tangly Lines and Tangly Splines

September 18, 2018

With Tangly, designer Zuzana Licko set out to explore how a font could be used for composing patterns that would appear as looping and connecting lines. Each character on the keyboard would be an element, and the elements would connect at specific points, as they would in a connecting script font, except they would connect at all four edges, top and bottom, as well as left and right. She started with one looped line, then rotated that line so the composed element would connect with itself and all other elements. The result is a pair of font families “Tangly Lines” and “Tangly Splines.” Each group has symmetric, mirrored and asymmetric variants.

Licko began the design process in 2014, and returned to it sporadically over the next four years. During this time, she had various types of fabrics printed, and had jacquard fabrics woven to see how these patterns could be applied. Many of her patterns can be ordered as custom printed yardage, on a variety of fabrics, at Spoonflower. And, these fabrics can be sewn to order into pillows and other housewares at Roostery.

These are just a few examples of how Tangly can be used. The number of patterns, combinations and applications is nearly infinite. For more Tangly patterns, download a free Tangly type specimen PDF from the Emigre website which shows additional examples, but still only scratches the surface of what’s possible.