Greek Week ’08, day one

Posted on 22 January 2008 in:

Gerry hold a 1780s Caslon specimen

Today, our “Greek Week” began. For the next few days, we’ll be drawing Greek letters, and trying to understand how and why they fit together the way they do. By Friday, we should even be digital; it’s Tuesday night, and that still seems a long way away. “Greek Week” seems to be something of a tradition among Reading typeface design students; I remember seeing blog posts and flicker traffic about the class of ’07’s experience with it last year. So far, this is our third Non-Latin workshop: toward the end of 2007, we had session on both North and South Indian scripts. No time is wasted here… next week, our Arabic workshop will begin.

Course director Gerry Leonidas (pictured above) collects various items from Greek typographic history, and we got to see a sample of his collection as a way to kick off the workshop. That was the morning. During the afternoon, we spent a good hour or so photographing it profusely; I’m sure that flickr’s pipes are busting with Greek type things at the moment. Below are just a few of my favorites from my many photos…

Very old printed book in Greek 01

This is a very old, very small book. It is set in a very early Greek typeface.

Very old printed book in Greek 02

Here is a close-up of a page from the book in the previous image.

Estienne book 01 partially in Greek 04

This tome is a real Estienne book, set with Garamond type. Damn!

Estienne book 01 partially in Greek 07

Oh… tempt me more… sweet, sweet Garamond…

Estienne book 01 partially in Greek 08

The Latin from the column next to that Greek above.

Little Plantin book 02

Columns, columns, columns! From left to right: Italic type, then Greek and Roman. From Missa Apostolica, printed by Plantin’s operation in the Low Countries (1589).

Oxford new testament with Greek types from Baskerville 02

Close-up of a page from an Oxford New Testament set with Baskerville’s Greek.

Didot book 01 picture 02

An Upright Greek styple, from the Didots in France.

Plato Greek for German pupils 02

An Inclined Greek style. from a 19th century book published in Leipzig.

Nebiolo Eurostile Greek 04

Now for the 20th century: Nebiolo Eurostile Greek.

All of my Greek Week photos are in this devoted flickr set.