A Digital Type Foundry & Academic Resource


The Creation of a Printing Type

From The Design to The Print by Frederic W. Goudy. This silent film from the 1930s shows the preeminent American type designer Frederic Goudy (1865-1947) creating his typeface Goudy Saks. Goudy fans will delight in watching the master at work, but more importantly, this is a document of his type-making process - from the original drawings in pencil and ink, through the engraving of the working pattern and the matrix to the casting and proofing. (Thanks to Prof. David Pankow for allowing us to post this film.)

Watch (00:10:16)


Do you need to explain the significance of type to your parents, your Aunt Edna or the first-year students in your Typography 101 class? This is the film for you. Produced in the 1980's by the BBC with renowned typographer Erik Spiekermann, this amusing introduction to the world of type delves into the myriad personalities of typefaces and explains how typographic form influences our lives every day. (Many thanks to Erik for allowing us to post this film.)

Watch (00:06:59)

To a “T”

First broadcast in May 2006 on the popular CBS Sunday Morning television show, this is an introduction to the world of fonts that combines well with Typomania to provide newcomers with different views on the purposes and significance of typefaces. It’s available for viewing on the website of designer Mark Simonson (which will appear in a new window).

Watch (00:03:16)

Douglas Coffin, Lettercarver

While this film may not be about type, it abounds with beautiful letters. Douglas Coffin is one of a handful of people in the United States who carve letters in stone with the same methods that were used in the Roman Empire. Two thousand years later, the most compelling results are still achieved through the design and carving skills of a passionate artist-craftsman.

Watch (00:06:45)

Letterpress Printing

This fabulous short film about John Kristensen‘s Firefly Press in Somerville, Massachusetts was created by journalist and videographer Chuck Kraemer for WGBH, Channel 2 in Boston. It‘s available for viewing on YouTube (which will appear in a new window).

Watch (00:05:52)

The Linotype

A short documentary film about one of the most intriguing machines of the Industrial Age; how it works - from beginning to end.

Watch (00:02:23)

The Ludlow Typograph Machine

A documentary film about the hot-metal typecaster for headlines; a machine for big type that combines hand composition and Industrial-Age technology.

Watch (00:02:09)

The Monotype Keyboard & Caster

A short documentary film about an extraordinary typesetting system and precursor to early computer technology; punch tape, line length calculation, x and y axes - they're all here.

Watch (00:03:45)