Questions regarding the history of design, typography and/or art.

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4
votes
1answer
47 views

Help identifing font of isolated character in historic documet and find modern match

This image below shows a few lines from the July 1948 Bell System Technical Journal. The 'p' character in the second line, used to typeset the "p0 = p1 = 1/2" equation is the character in question. ...
84
votes
6answers
15k views

Who first discovered CMYK?

It has been used for colour printing for many, many years, but who (and when) first discovered that a bright pink colour (magenta), a light blue (cyan), yellow and black can be mixed to create almost ...
3
votes
1answer
58 views

When and why did spaces around an em dash originally appear?

Today, the usage of spaces around an em dash in English depends on the publisher's style. But in scanned old books, I find only unspaced em-dashes—similar to this one. (Moreover, in printing, the em ...
6
votes
1answer
100 views

Why is the numpad on a keyboard not designed to print typographically correct symbols?

As Wikipedia states, the numeric keypad, number pad or short numpad provides calculator-style efficiency for entering numbers. The numpad’s keys are digits from 0 to 9, addition (+), subtraction (−...
14
votes
3answers
259 views

Examples of expensive color related printing mistakes?

I was preparing a lesson for new designers about "How to make print ready files?" and I wanted to add some historic facts about the greatest and most expensive print mistakes—something interesting to ...
18
votes
3answers
556 views

Why do most of the well known currency symbols have strikeouts in their symbols?

We encounter currency symbols every day as shorthand for a currency’s name, especially in reference to amounts of money. Most, like these common currency symbols, have strikeouts in their sign. ...
14
votes
4answers
373 views

What are the origins of terms “em” and “en” as typographic units?

As you know one of the most common versions of the dash in typography are the en dash "–" (Unicode character U+2013 and HTML symbol –) as well as the em dash "—" (Unicode ...
9
votes
2answers
303 views

Is the Google logo a good example for basic trends in logo design?

Last year one of the most popular logos changed significantly by introducing a controversial "'new logo and identity family 'designed to work across multiple devices.": I remember that I was ...
1
vote
1answer
186 views

Who designed monokai color scheme?

I am in love with Monokai color scheme. Did the makers of Sublime Text design it or is it in use before Sublime Text arrived? The second part of the question is that can I freely copy it for my own ...
5
votes
2answers
470 views

How to find which brush was used in a layer in Photoshop?

In a new layer, I selected the shape of the letter U and used a specific brush to brush in that selection in Layer 16 (in the screenshot below). Now I can't figure out which brush I used to get this ...
55
votes
6answers
13k views

Before computers, how did cartographers draw roads with perfectly parallel sides?

If you're drawing a road on a map, and that road happens to be straight, it's easy to draw its two sides parallel: you just move the ruler. But most roads twist and turn, and drawing their sides ...
13
votes
8answers
4k views

How were scientific illustrations made before the spread of digital computers?

Before the advent of digital computers, a lot of scientific publications had high quality illustrations. How did they do this without computers? EDIT Examples of illustrations to which I am ...
2
votes
2answers
138 views

Why do fonts set to the same (pixel) number of size differ drastically in actual size when displayed on screen? [duplicate]

Something that has always puzzled me is the fact that when I change the font used in a program, even though in theory the font size is remains the same, the actual displayed size differs dramatically. ...
0
votes
2answers
699 views

Delete only one step in the middle of history (Photoshop)

Is it possible to delete only one step in the middle of history (keeping all steps after it) without juggling with multiple files?
2
votes
2answers
669 views

How to save history in Photoshop?

Is there a way to save a file in Photoshop CC 2014 with history? I would like to open a file already saved and see the history.
20
votes
1answer
907 views

Who first used three stacked bars as an icon for “menu”?

The three stacked bars for a menu (known as a “hamburger menu”) seems like a pretty new concept. Is there any canonical information out there about who created this icon? I’m curious because it has ...
57
votes
5answers
17k views

Why don't upper case numbers exist?

Capital letters add a lot to text in various ways, for names, brands, emphasis (although capitalisation for emphasis is frowned upon) Why then, are there no upper case numbers?
2
votes
1answer
99 views

What style would you say this cassette tape packaging is?

I've provided some concept styles to a client and wasn't sure how to describe this style. What time period/style does this image evoke most?
21
votes
6answers
1k views

What can be done to preserve the history of digital design?

I have recently moved, so I went through the process of deciding what to keep, what to donate and what to throw away. One of the things I kept was a banker's box full of examples of my print and ...
0
votes
2answers
960 views

Is there a way to retrieve the file in illustrator that just been accidentally replaced?

Is there a way to retrieve the file in illustrator that just been accidentally replaced? is there some sort of history? The application was closed after it was replaced so there's no way i can undo it....
13
votes
1answer
724 views

What tools would Monks use when DESIGNING a large illuminated letter or pattern?

The answer here: http://graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/a/35128/2611 got me thinking about how illuminated letters were designed. There's a lot of resources out there discussing illuminated texts ...
3
votes
2answers
680 views

Examples of medieval and Renaissance typography? [closed]

Do you know any fonts that mimic the typography from the Renaissance era? Time: 16th century Place: Denmark/Scandinavia The thing I'm working at is a logo for a Jousting Simulator. This game took ...
19
votes
9answers
7k views

“Good Artists Copy; Great Artists Steal” - How can this concept be supported & explained by a designer?

"Good Artists Copy; Great Artists Steal" This is the most famous version of the concept described by so many great artists, yet, as a designer/artist, I'm not sure how I would explain it. The ...
2
votes
1answer
437 views

Origin of solid color banner at top and bottom of websites motif

It's extremely common on websites to see solid colors spanning some portion of the top and bottom of the website, much like can be seen on some of the stack sites. Stackoverflow is a good example, it ...
4
votes
1answer
788 views

What were some the main trends/breakthroughs of web design?

We have quite a few questions about some web design trends in particular, but I was wondering if you could help me put together a quick reference to what the main web design trends and breakthroughs ...
5
votes
1answer
194 views

Icon design etymology?

Is anyone aware of any resources for Icon design etymology, or the history of icon design? I'm talking about icons like Wi-Fi/Ethernet/Bluetooth status indicators, add, save, and similar simple images ...
10
votes
2answers
566 views

Origin of numerical font weight descriptions in typography

The CSS specification (among several others) establish that, when selecting a font, the font-weight may be described using numerical descriptors ranging from 100 to 900 at 100 increments, where 400 is ...
8
votes
2answers
883 views

Are there any films about graphic design?

I'm looking for fiction films that are either about graphic design, or have important elements of its history, and I'm a bit stuck. I'm not trying to find movies that would be inspiring for ...
3
votes
2answers
302 views

Is there a common basic template or style for movie posters?

I am designing an app about collecting movie posters (original ones combined with some funny/creative factors). Since there are different kinds of movies (horror, romantic, action, etc.), I need to ...
5
votes
1answer
107 views

High-Resolution Operina Scans

I'm not sure if this is the right forum but there doesn't seem to be a dedicated typography forum. I'm looking for high-resolution scans from pages of Arrighi's La Operina, which is a classic manual ...
15
votes
4answers
1k views

How was brand consistency maintained before computers?

The era of computers makes it easy to regulate brand consistency - you can e-mail anyone your branding guidelines in a PDF and it will have all the information they need. However, I still sometimes ...
10
votes
2answers
474 views

What design and art concepts were art students/professionals discussing in the 70s?

I'm wondering: If you were [conditional, I'm not asking for people who were actually there] an art (or printing, or advertisement, I'm not sure what the title would have been back then) student or ...
9
votes
1answer
766 views

What are some obscure/rare/endangered/extinct typographic symbols?

Just discovered the "asterism" today: ⁂ Super cool. I had never heard of it or seen it before. Wikipedia has more about it. What other typographic symbols are out there that were never all that ...
1
vote
1answer
239 views

What is the boldest version of the font Neuzeit?

What's the boldest variant of the "Neuzeit?" Neuzeit Grotesk (or "GroT") is the boldest I've found online, but I just came across a sample in an illustration that was even bolder than that. I need to ...
4
votes
1answer
195 views

CS5: How to make non-linear changes using the history panel?

I made a mistake in the below image by making the left-pointing arrow too high up, such that the black margins do not align. I wish to go back and change this "combining paths" action, without ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the historical origins of Helvetica?

This issue of a typeface's heritage is of particular interest when attempting to pair faces. The nuances of related faces tend to harmonize well, whether that relation is grounded in history or the ...
7
votes
1answer
747 views

Blackletter fonts supporting long s and r rotunda?

I'm doing up a document in the style of the earliest printed documents. For this, I need to find a blackletter font that supports long s « ſ » and r rotunda « ꝛ ». Are there any such fonts out there?...
9
votes
2answers
382 views

Can the end of double spacing after periods be dated?

From this Slate article: Hundreds of years ago some typesetters would end sentences with a double space, others would use a single space, and a few renegades would use three or four spaces. ...
3
votes
1answer
195 views

How to add catchwords using InDesign

Many books before 1800 used a feature called catchwords, repeating the first word of the page at the bottom of the previous page. Wikipedia has a small article on them and there's a good question ...
18
votes
1answer
381 views

What's the term used when the first word of one page is repeated at the end of the previous page?

There's a common feature in old typography where the first word of a page is repeated at the end of the previous page, usually right-aligned on a line by itself. This book from 1759 shows this ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

What are great examples of the influence that design has?

There is a quote that "bad design never killed anyone," but I know that what we do is less trivial than that. What designs have you seen cause real change or have a real influence? Specific context ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the major design trends in graphic design history

I'm reasonably familiar with design trends and movements of architecture and, to a lesser extent, art; and i've been interested that many of the asthetic considerations and philosophies loosly lumped ...