David Berlow (b. Boston, 1955) entered the type industry in 1978 as a letter designer for the Mergenthaler, Linotype, Stempel, and Haas typefoundries. He joined the newly formed digital type supplier, Bitstream, Inc. in 1982. After Berlow left Bitstream in 1989, he founded The Font Bureau, Inc. with Roger Black. Font Bureau has developed more than 300 new and revised type designs for The Chicago Tribune, The Wall Street Journal, Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Esquire, Rolling Stone, Hewlett Packard and others, with OEM work for Apple Computer Inc. and Microsoft Corporation. The Font Bureau Retail Library consists mostly of original designs and now includes over 1,000 typefaces. In a video made for Mike Parker's TDC medal in 2011, Mike Parker says that David Berlow is the most talented type designer he ever met. David lives in Martha's Vineyard.
At ATypI 2004 in Prague, David spoke about Daily types. At ATypI 2009 in Mexico City, he spoke on The heart of my letter, (and the online version). Since that time he has been very active and vocal on the issue of high quality web fonts. Speaker at ATypI 2011 in Reykjavik and at ATypI 2014 in Barcelona.
David Berlow Type Specimens (free pdf). Another type specimen booklet. Interview by A List Apart in 2009. Speaker at ATypI 2010 in Dublin. FontShop link. www.typovideo.de/david-berlow. David Berlow on web fonts. Interview by The Boston Globe. His typefaces:
- Agency FB (1995). After Morris Fuller Benton's squarish typeface from 1932-1933 for American Typefounders.
- Amstelvar (2017). A variable (or parametric) font at Font Bureau. Contributors include David Berlow, Santiago Orozco, Alexandre Saumier Demers, and David Jonathan Ross. Open Font Library link, where one can download the font. Github link.
- Apres (2008, a sans with 40 styles). David Berlow and staff drew Apres as part of a series designed originally for the Palm Pre smart phone, for use both on the device and in print marketing. Simple, open letterforms and generous proportions provide a clear, comfortable, and inviting experience for navigation and readability.
- Belizio (1987-1988), a beautiful Clarendon-style slab serif modeled after the 1958 original slab serif by Aldo Novarese called Egizio Corsiva Nero. Claudio Piccinini would have liked Font Bureau to acknowledge Aldo Novarese's Egizio as the source of this family.
- Belucian (1990, by David Berlow and Kelly Ehrgott Milligan. Several weights exist, including Demi and Ultra.
- Berlin Sans (1997).
- Bureau Grotesque (1989). This 27-style family is now called Bureau Grot. Font Bureau's blurb: The current family was first developed by David Berlow in 1989 from original specimens of the grotesques released by Stephenson Blake in Sheffield. These met with immediate success at the Tribune Companies and Newsweek, who had commissioned custom versions at the behest of Roger Black. Further weights were designed by Berlow for the launches of Entertainment Weekly and the Madrid daily El Sol, bringing the total to twelve styles by 1993. Jill Pichotta, Christian Schwartz, and Richard Lipton expanded the styles further, at which point the family name was shortened to Bureau Grot.. Note: there is a custom version called M&C Saatchi Grotesque with truetype data created by dtpTypes in 1998.
- Custer RE (2014), a typeface for small on screen use. The Font Bureau blurb: In 2009, a book from 1897 in the library of the University of Wisconsin caught David Berlow’s attention. It was set in a clear text face---a predecessor of Bookman---cast by the Western Type Foundry who called it Custer. Upon noting how well the typeface worked in point sizes of 6 and 7 points, Berlow developed it into a member of the Reading Edge series specifically designed for small text onscreen. Custer RE is a broad and approachable typeface drawn large on the body with a tall x-height to maximize its apparent size when set very small. The minimal stroke contrast and the hefty serifs let it stay exceptionally clear down to a font-size of 9px. Font Bureau.
- Decovar (2017). A variable font. Github link, where one can freely download the font family. See also Open Font Library.
- Desdemona (1992). An art nouveau face.
- Eagle (1889-1994). This art deco typeface Font Bureau Eagle was started in 1989 for Publish. David Berlow designed a lowercase, finished the character set, and in 1990 added Eagle Book for setting text. In 1994, Jonathan Corum added Eagle Light and Eagle Black to form a full series.
- Esperanto (1995).
- ITC Franklin Gothic (1991). In 2008, David Berlow added Condensed, Compressed and Extra Compressed widths to Vic Caruso's 1979 ITC Franklin interpretation (which had Light, Medium, Bold and Black), and Font Bureau sells a complete ITC Franklin now. In 2010, Berlow completed his definitive revision of ITC Franklin, a single new series of six weights in four widths for a total of 48 styles. Typeface review at Typographica.
- Giza (an Egyptian family.
- Hitech (1995).
- Juliana Text (2009), a rebirth of Sem Hartz's Juliana (1958, Linotype), a popular narrow legible paperback text face.
- Kis FB (2007): a revival of old style types by Nicholas Kis from ca. 1700.
- Letras Oldtsyle (1998). Letras Oldstyle was commissioned by Letras Libres, the reigning literary magazine published by Enrique Krauze in Mexico City. This garalde series was inspired by the earliest typefaces cut in the Americas in the early 1600s by printer Henrico Martinez. Proofs survive in the Biblioteca Nacional. Letras Oldstyle stands as the first typeface ever cut in the Americas, the root of American type design.
- Meyer Two (1994). Based on a 1926 type by L.B. Meyer.
- Millenium BT Bold Extended (1989, Bitstream). Also known by insiders as Starfleet Bold Extended, this font was used on federation starship hull markings until episode ten. MyFonts link.
- Moderno FB (1995): an exhibitionist didone in 32 styles, for Esquire Gentleman. In 1996 Berlow cut new styles with Richard Lipton for El Norte. In 1997, Roger Black ordered new weights for Tages Anzeiger. It grew further when the Baltimore Sun, with FB Ionic as text, was redesigned. The whole series was then revised for Louise Vincent, Montreal Gazette, with further styles added in 2005 for La Stampa. [It is my favorite type family at Font Bureau.]
- Momentum (2018). An in house variable font family for use on the Type Network web site.
- Nature (1995).
- Numskill (1990).
- Old Modern.
- Online Gothic (1995).
- Phaistos (1990-1991). A flared angular design done with Just van Rossum, and inspired by Rudolf Koch's Locarno.
- Poynter Agate.
- Reforma: Based on Giza.
- Rhode (1997).
- Roboto Flex (2017). A large free variable typeface family by David Berlow on commission for Google; based on Christian Robertson's original Roboto. Google Fonts link. Github link. Google redits Font Bureau, David Berlow, Santiago Orozco, Irene Vlachou, Ilya Ruderman, Yury Ostromentsky and Mikhail Strukov.
- Scotch Roman (1993).
- Skia (1993, Apple). A Greek simulation sans, in the style of Twombly's Lithos, co-designed with Matthew Carter for Apple's QuickDraw GX project.
- Titling Gothic FB (2005): Berlow spent 10 years developing FB Titling Gothic in seven weights of seven widths each for use as display and headline romans. It was inspired by the popular ATF Railroad Gothic and grew out of Berlow's own Rhode.
- Throhand: a classic family based on metal type found at the Plantin Moretus Museum in Antwerp.
- Truth FB (1995).
- Vonness (2007): a newspaper sans family. Font Bureau: Vonness was designed by David Berlow working closely with Neville Brody on corporate redesign for Jim Von Ehre at Macromedia. Core weights are loosely based on Bauersche Giesserei's Venus, 1907-1910. Berlow expanded the ideas behind the series to 56 fonts.
- Yurnacular (1992, part of FUSE 4).
- Zenobia (1995).
View David Berlow's typefaces. Another catalog of David Berlow's fonts. Speaker at ATypI 2018 in Antwerp.
Type designers ⦿
Type designers ⦿
Very thin (hairline sans) typefaces ⦿
Type scene in Massachusetts ⦿
Art Nouveau typefaces ⦿
Modern style [Bodoni, Didot, Walbaum, Thorowgood, Computer Modern, etc.] ⦿
Skyline Typefaces ⦿
Greek simulation fonts ⦿
Scotch Roman ⦿
Garalde or Garamond typefaces ⦿
Variable fonts ⦿
Typefaces based on Nicolas Kis's work ⦿