Archive for May, 2010

Seems Like Old Times

Add comment May 25th, 2010

Continuing in what has become the busiest year of my life so far, and certainly the most successful in my career as a freelance book designer/layout artist, I am about to begin another “straight layout” job. That is, where I am provided a template and make some other designer’s pages.

This is, you might say, a return to my roots. I worked at least a couple of years doing such book layout work in the early ’90s before I hired on for my first interior design and layout job. I have always felt that starting out in publishing as a proofreader forced me to see, in an unerringly stripped down fashion, how words on a printed page are supposed to look. This, in turn, fostered a nitpicky concern for typography generally and an intolerance for crappy (to use the term of art) wordspacing specifically.

Doing page layout in those beginning years I simply gravitated to a line-by-line scan/search technique with my eyes—that is, looking line-by-line—to find every spot on every page in every book I worked where I might “drive a truck” through the wordspacing because it seemed so wide to me.

I took that feel for typography with me into book design projects. I always try to select types, type sizes, and line lengths that work together for maximum flexibility and efficiency in terms of how a line of type can be adjusted to avoid wide wordspacing.

So it is with a sort of “coming home” feeling that I will begin my first layout-only job in a while.

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