If I were alive in the 1970s, Im pretty sure ITC would have been my H&J.

I want to start this post by apologizing for my ignorance as as related to my age in certain areas. I spent the earlier part of my formative years in a town whose mind is about as far removed design as can be, and any exposure I’ve gained in the area has been either self-taught, or through the mentorship of co-workers. Naturally this leaves holes in ones education. A hole in mine: the typefaces of ITC.

Sure they show up in FontExplorer, and I occasionally use a few for this or that, (eg. Lubalin Graph, Avant Garde) but until recently I didn’t understand the vastness of the contribution that ITC made to the world of typography.

ITC (International Typeface Corporation) opened in New York in 1970 and was founded by Edward Rondthaler (a typographer), Aaron Burns, and Herb Lubalin (both graphic designers). The company was known for a couple of things: Making typefaces, re-cutting old typefaces (to some degree of criticism from designers) for digital use that were previously only available as metal type (they were one of the first foundries that never made metal type), and for producing the magazine u&lc. Their contribution to the world of type is in my opinion, colossal.

The only modern equivalent I can think of is H&FJ. You know H&FJ (even if you don’t think you do.) Their type is everywhere. Gotham (probably their most famous to date) is used so often for logos there’s a tumblr about it??http://gothamlogos.tumblr.com/. From the Obama campaign to IFC to the movie Bridesmaids. I also frequently see Archer (developed for Martha Stewart Living Magazine) and Knockout (used by Best Buy).

HF&J (http://www.typography.com/)??is an active type foundry and as they continue to push out new faces, I continue to drool over and attempt to collect them. (Newer favorites include Landmark, Tungsten and Sentinel.) I’m pretty sure if I’d been around in the 70s, I would have been doing this with ITC instead of H&FJ.

Some favorites from ITC are Lubalin Graph, Korinna, Novarese, Souvenir, Serif Gothic, and Panache (not pictured, because I don’t have it!)

If you go on a search for ITC fonts, make sure to check out the heavier weights, especially in the display fonts. There are a lot of surprise little gems hidden in those heavier weights.

The best part, in my case anyway and maybe in yours, is that many or all of these may already be in your type library and you just need to give them a closer look.

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