Nerds and tech folk have always had a special fascination with typeface and font design, and especially with the venerable Helvetica. Today we're going to talk to Charles Nix, who's foundry Monotype had the challenge of updating Helvetica for the 21st century with Helvetica Now. A lot of these bonus episodes are you learning along with me as we take deeper dives into certain tech topics, well no more so than this episode because I knew absolutely nothing about this area of design and so was fascinated to learn about what goes into creating a typeface from an artistic, design, and even business perspective. Sponsors: HappyCog.com/ride Mealime This is what the Helvetica Now looks like. This is the ad-free premium feed! Subscribe now!
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Charles Nix is a Creative Type Director, designer, typographer and educator. He designed a number of popular typefaces in the Monotype Library, including Walbaum and Hope Sans, which received a Certificate of Typographic Excellence in the 22nd Annual Type Directors Club Typeface Design Competition. He’s also designed custom typefaces for Google Noto, Progressive Insurance and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Prior to his position at Monotype, Charles co-owned a small publishing firm, where he designed hundreds of books, while also orchestrating all aspects of book production, from writing proposals to supervising printing. His experience in marketing, publicity and advertising gives him a unique perspective into the importance of type in branding.
Charles is also an educator, having chaired the Communication Design departments at the Center for Advanced Design in Malaysia and the Parsons School of Design in New York. He has taught dozens of courses in graphic design, typography and publication design, and recorded a number of type design courses for LinkedIn Learning. Charles is also chairman emeritus of the board of the Type Directors Club, an international organization dedicated to furthering typographic excellence.