On Graphic Design


A blustery autumn day - the pier at high tide

Looking for food inspiration, I was browsing through an old recipe book produced about 30 years ago by a then-colleague. I remembered the entire book had been produced on an IBM electronic composer, way before the days of computers. There was no spell check, and different fonts were on separate “golf balls” that had to be clipped in and out by hand,
We used Letraset for headings, the sheets kept in huge folders separated into the different typestyles (didn’t call them fonts in those days), and in the different sizes. Sometimes, in the middle of a job, we would run out of particular letters e.g. capital R, and have to make them up using other letters! Sometimes an entire wedding invitation would be made up in Letraset if the customer wanted a fancy script.

Pictures, photos and graphics were supplied as “bromides”, neatly trimmed and pasted down with rubber cement aka cow gum, a great substance that allowed you to move the artwork around until you found the right spot.

My colleague was a marvel. She could draw up the artwork for an entire business form – e.g. invoice, order form or statement, ruling all the lines with a Rotring drawing pen and ink – all, perfectly spaced, her neat corners were a sight to behold.

The day my boss decided to go computerised was like all our Christmases and birthdays at once. CorelDraw! Wow, what a boon! Suddenly, instead of being artists, we were computer operators, half the work was being done for us. Spell-check, hooray! Downloadable fonts at our fingertips – woopee! Scan in the graphics, resize them and drop them in where you want – what a doddle!

Aah, anyone remember those days?


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One Response to “On Graphic Design”

  1. Dewitt Talsma Says:

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