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Stroke fonts

With the invention of movable-type in 1450, writing became type-setting. Where a letters’ shape used to be the result of the movement of hand and pen it became a meticoulously designed outline ready to be copied millions of times in mass-production. Writing turned into typograhy. Instead of transferring the skeleton: the gesture. We transfer it’s facade. And so, for more than five centuries, typography has been kept away from the potential of writing.

In the progression of typography from punch cutting through to font design software we’ve ported over old physical constraints to digital canvases, canvasses that are really much more flexible than what we are currently using them as. Partly because of the typographer himself, feeling the custodian of a very long tradition, the constraints and economics of production but also for the convenience of the major software publishers already struggling in trying to manage and cover all of the world’s writing systems. OSP continues to emphasize this issue and would like to present the work, experiments and paths we’ve explored around this issue by showing (stroke-)fonts we’ve drawn but more importantly the tools we have and are developing to reclaim the potential in typography.

Gijs de Heij

Gijs de Heij is a designer and programmer, part of OSP. And shares OSP's fascination for typography and it's (hidden) underlying formats & techniques. osp.kitchen, de-heij.com