Type foundry Colophon talks about its most-loved books

15 June 2017
Reading Time
3 minute read

Since 2009 type foundry Colophon has aimed to “produce fonts that are composted with aesthetic and technological care” and to create “a reputable library of new classics that couple typographic history with contemporary sensibilities”.

With offices based in London and Los Angeles, Anthony Sheret and Edd Harrington oversee the type foundry and also run The Entente, the pair’s affiliated “office for design and typography”. At It’s Nice That we’ve featured Colophon multiple times for its typefaces and beautifully produced specimens, most recently Montefiore (based on road signage in Brighton and Hove), Helen (created to reflect the disorientation of having Dementia), and a typeface that works with the Earth’s tilt with Wieden + Kennedy for Booking.com. Back in February the foundry also worked with photographer Sophie Mayanne as part of our partnership with Arjowiggins to create a book that chronicled Sophie’s journey from graduation to today.

With a bespoke and carefully-considered approach to its work, we were eager to find out what sits on Colophon’s neatly organised bookshelf and it doesn’t fail to disappoint. From a playful learning book for primary school teachers to a book on Sainsbury’s design studio and its own label packaging, this is one for all you type lovers out there.

Stephen Leiber: Extra Art: A Survey of Artists’ Ephemera 1960 – 1999

A collection of ephemera designed by artists, an eclectic mix of material that makes for viewing of the artist as designer. The book is full of hundreds of examples, each relating to varying exhibitions etc. – pure graphic design.

MacDonald Educational: Early Experiences: A Unit for Teachers, Beginnings

A playful learning book for primary school teachers – some wonderful ideas for activities such as building robots, shadow sculptures and playing with mirrors.

Letraset: Graphic Design Handbook

A beautiful handbook showing the tools from days gone by. A fascinating approach in how the graphic designer worked and the tools available at the time.

Bernd & Hilla Becher: Basic Forms of Industrial Buildings

Bernd & Hilla Becher have been studio favourites for a long time. Looking at the everyday and changing contexts is built into what we do every day. These everyday structures become sculptural and complicated forms through the images in the book.

Jonny Trunk: Own Label: Sainsbury’s Design Studio, 1962 – 1977

After working on type design for a retail chain over the last year, the application of type by a large singular entity is fascinating to us. We love the stripped back but playful aesthetic, the book is full of varying applications, each with their own thought process behind.

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About the Author

Rebecca Fulleylove

Rebecca became staff writer at It’s Nice That in March 2016 before leaving the company at the end of 2017. Before joining the company full time she worked with us on a freelance basis many times, as well as stints at Macmillan Publishers, D&AD, Dazed and frieze.

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