Max Miedinger

Topics: Typeface, Helvetica, Typography Pages: 3 (899 words) Published: November 3, 2012
Max Miedinger was born December 24, 1910 in Zurich Switzerland. His career as a typeface designer spanned some 54 years. He began studying at the Kuntsgewerbeschule after training as a typesetter from 1926 until 1930. He worked at several positions until 1956 when he became a freelance graphic designer. About a year later, he developed Helvetica in collaboration with Edouard Hoffman. The creation made by Max Miedinger and Eduard Hoffmann was originally titled Neue Haas Grotesk, but this title was changed in 1960 in an attempt to market it internationally. It has been even more successful since. Helvetica has since grown to be widely used and developed into several popular variants that are seen in many places. In fact, they have become so popular that you have probably seen them in advertising, currency, online, or anywhere without having any idea of what title is given to the letterforms that you were viewing. The original design, drawn by Max Miedinger, was released by the Haas Type Foundry of Switzerland, then by Germany-based Stempel (the parent company of Haas) and finally by Mergenthaler Linotype. In 1983, Stempel released Neue Helvetica, a re-working of the design. Since its launch, Helvetica has been refined by a variety of designers to add new weights and adapt the typeface for successive methods of composition, from hot metal to digital. In addition, character weights, proportions and spacing were sometimes compromised in earlier versions of the family in order to comply with inherent limitations of typesetting technologies of the day. It was these modifications that led to the redrafting of Helvetica in 1983, when the complete family was carefully redrawn and expanded. The outcome was a synthesis of aesthetic and technical refinements that resulted in improved appearance, legibility and usefulness. Neue Helvetica is available as OpenType® Pro fonts with characters that support Central European and many Eastern European languages, in addition to 34...
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