Thursday, September 8, 2016

"the Caslon" (type emulates handwriting)

Also known as William Caslon I (1692-1766). A famous designer of typefaces. In 1716 he started business in London as an engraver of gun locks and barrels, and as a bookbinder's tool cutter. His work influenced John Baskerville and are thus the progenitors of the typeface classifications Transitional (which includes Baskerville, Bulmer, and Fairfield), and Modern (which includes Bodoni, Didot, and Walbaum). 

This first printed version of the United States Declaration of Independence has Caslon typefaces

The Caslon types fell out of favor in the century after his death, but were revived in the 1840s. Several revivals of the Caslon types are widely used today.  

Characteristics:

1- Short ascenders and descenders, bracketed serifs, moderately high contrast, robust texture, and moderate modulation of stroke.
2- A has a concave hollow at the apex, the G is without a spur.
3- Caslon's italics have a rhythmic calligraphic stroke. A, V, and W have an acute slant.
4- italics p, Q, v, w, and z all have a suggestion of a swash.