Until this summer, U&lc Online was just a name and a placeholder: a reflection of ITC’s award-winning magazine, U&lc, which has been appearing (on paper, of course) for twenty-five years. Every three months, the contents of the current issue of U&lc would be posted on the web site — but gradually, over the course of the quarter. In August, we added our first online-only content; now, with the digital pages you’re reading, U&lc Online comes into its own as a separate publication.
While there will be overlap between the printed and online magazines, with some articles appearing in both media, each magazine will also feature material that the other doesn’t. U&lc Online parallels U&lc’s quarterly schedule, but each issue will appear in monthly installments (reflecting the way the ITC web site is updated on a monthly basis). The current issue of U&lc is 25.2 (vol. 25, no. 2); this issue of U&lc Online will appear in three parts: 25.2.1 (September), 25.2.2 (October), and 25.2.3 (November). Not your usual numbering scheme, maybe, but it fits the format.
Each monthly iteration will feature a column by one of our regular columnists. The first slot goes to Eileen Gunn, whose column “Web Radar” deals with web-related news and issues — in this issue, with the licensing questions raised by 3M’s Post-it® Notes for Internet Designers. In October, our columnist will be Olav Martin Kvern, a regular contributor to U&lc, with a series of tips and tricks for designers called “Dig We Must.”
In addition to “Web Radar,” this issue features Patrick Baglee’s profile of calligrapher/type designer Phill Grimshaw (which also appears in the printed U&lc) and reviews of a couple of reference books that could make a designer’s life easier. You can also read our reports on two events (the Metamorphosis conference and a 70th-birthday tribute to Adrian Frutiger) which were posted on the web site earlier this summer as a preview of U&lc Online.
ITC and the type world lost a friend when Phill Grimshaw died in July. I met Phill for the first (and, as it turned out, only) time in at the ATypI congress in Reading last October. He and fellow calligrapher and type designer Tim Donaldson had come down from the North for the event. Where Tim proved to be a big, quiet, sardonic man, Phill seemed like a gleeful gnome. He was good company, unpretentious, and took every typographic profundity with a big pinch of salt. Those of us who had just met him were looking forward to spending time with him at future gatherings. It’s a bitter fate that we won’t see him again at this year’s ATypI in Lyon.
The annual congress of ATypI (the Assocation Typographique Internationale) is simply the best place to meet a good part of the international typographic community all in one place. The place moves around: this year it’s in Lyon, France, for three days in October (23-25). For complete information on the conference, check out the ATypI web site: http://www.atypi.org.
St. Bride Printing Library
The type world rests on several pillars, which it’s easy to take for granted. One of the steadiest has been the St. Bride Printing Library in London, a small, densely packed institution located in the heart of the City of London off Fleet Street. St. Bride’s is the destination, it seems, for the cream of the archives and artifacts of printing history in the UK, and often in the entire English-speaking world. The library has earned that reputation, under librarian James Mosley, by being not just a repository of old stuff but an active and available resource. This autumn and winter, for instance, St. Bride’s is organizing several events and exhibitions, including an exhibition in October, sponsored by ITC, on “William Caslon: An Old Face Revived,” to mark the upcoming launch of ITC Founder’s Caslon, and a larger exhibition in January on early sans serif types. (More on ITC Founder’s Caslon in the next U&lc.)
But like most good things, St. Bride’s is periodically threatened: in the library’s case, threatened with having its funding cut off and its collection dispersed. Such a threat was fended off once before, in 1990, but this year it has reappeared: the Corporation of London, which owns the libary, has slashed its budget and, more importantly, is considering moving the collection, lumping it in with others, and turning it into an inactive “heritage collection.” An international organization, the Friends of the St. Bride Printing Library, has been formed to prevent this, by making the Corporation realize the worldwide importance of the library. For more information or to join the Friends, you can get in touch with Terry Belanger in the US at firstname.lastname@example.org, phone (804) 924-8851, fax (804) 924-8824, or Justin Howes in the UK at email@example.com, phone and fax (0)1933 419447.