Adapting existing typeface design

In recent months, I have seen some adaptation of existing well know designs made by inexperienced typeface designers. I’m bit perplex about how someone can claim designing a new typeface, “a revival”, based strictly on original sources, even using the original name of the design, without asking permission to the owner of the typeface.

Such questions always comeback in Type design. Several people wrote about this, but perhaps in its “A code of conduct”,1 Fred Smeijers found a nice way to explain how it should be done.

A situation might arise in which you have to slightly adapt an existing design. This can done only if the creator has given permission for it […] If the original creator has not given […] then it is better to stay way from this kind of muddled situation.

Typeface designers should read or re-read this full chapter.

1 From Fred Smeijers, Type Now, 2003, Hyphen Press. ISBN 978-0907259244.

Jean François Porchez, 26 May 2010

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