Type design

From serious sans-serif typeface families to dotty display faces

Directly after finishing design college I was incredibly lucky to land a position at Letraset's London-based Type Studio as a trainee type designer under the guidance of Colin Brignall (Type Director) and Peter O'Donnell (Studio Manager).

I learnt about all aspects of display type production & design and was also involved in the transition of transferring the type range from analogue artwork to digital outlines, initially using the Ikarus system and then as desktop computing took off, production was switched to FontStudio on Apple Macs.

In 1990 I designed my first display typeface, Isis – and the only one that was produced as rubdown lettering.

With a move up to senior designer I worked predominantly on Letraset's foray into text fonts, notably Charlotte & Charlotte Sans, Elysium and Gilgamesh families.

Other display font designs include Prague (a titling companion to Elysium), Katfish, Fling and Frances Uncial plus some typographic ornaments and borders.

After leaving Letraset I designed a few fonts as a freelancer including Forkbeard & Forkbeard Condensed, Spidercave and Avalanche Script.

My type designs have been used around the world by well-known brands and organisations including: LG Electronics, Ocean Spray Juices, SeaWorld Adventure Parks, Argos, Blueprint: Design Your Life magazine and Charlotte Sans was used as part of the logo for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.

However, it wasn't until 2016 that I managed to reboot my type design mojo and in 2019 finished my first font family (Rahere, a humanist sans in six weights) since 2004. Since then I have designed a few more display fonts, my favourites being Rahere Roman Display & Rahere Esoteric.

A list of all my published font designs can be found at MyFonts (Iris & Hand Drawn – although credited to me – aren't my designs).

Letraset Type Studio c. 1989
Letraset Type Studio c. 1989. Note the absence of desktop computers. There were large green screen terminals at the other end of the studio.
First typeface design, Isis
Isis, my first typeface design and the only one released as rubdown lettering.
Charlotte Sans used as part of the logo design for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics
Charlotte Sans was used as part of the logo design for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics