Typography Books

Introductory Text

Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupto

Three chapters: Letters, Text, and Grids. Each chapter starts with theories and follows with practical techniques, a nice blend of both as an intro to typography. I personally find the theory part more intriguing.

Typographic Systems by Kimberly Elam

Introduces eight typographic systems: axial, radial, dilatational, random, transitional, modular, bilateral, and grid.

Grid Systems by Kimberly Elam

Also by Elam, a more detailed account on the grid system.

Designing with Type by James Craig and Irene Korol Scala

Stop Stealing Sheep and Find Out How Type Works by Erik Spiekerman

The design of the book is an artwork in itself.


The New Typography by Jan Tschichold (1928)

The book that codified the New Typography Movement.

An Essay on Typography by Eric Gill (1931)

As much a critique on industrial production as a book on typography. I read it with Postman’s Technopoly and there’s an interesting intertextuality.

Grid Systems in Graphic Design by Josef Muller-Brockmann (1961)

The grid book. Mostly on application of grids on editorial and publication design.

Designing Programmes by Karl Gerstner (1964)

Could well be the genesis of design system.

Typography by Emil Ruder (1967)

The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst (1992)

The all-encompassing essential typography reference. Though at times reads too dry a manual.