Looking back on the special edition of Chikushi typeface 10 years


Ten years have passed since the first fonts provided by the Fontworks flagship font, Chikushi typeface, "Tsukushi Mincho L/LB", "Tsukushi A Midashi Mincho E" and "Tsukushi B Midashi Mincho E". It was Nowadays, it is loved by many users and is used in a wide range of media such as publications such as magazines and books, television telops, and website displays.

This time, as a special edition looking back over the past 10 years, I would like to introduce an interview with graphic designer Tsutomu Toda. As one of the first people to appreciate the Chikushi typeface, I talked about "Tsukushi Mincho L" immediately after it was released. Now that the DTP environment is becoming more familiar and the Chikushi typeface is supported by many people, I would like to convey to you again the charm. [2005 interview]

In the DTP era, why didn't there be a standard Mincho for Text?

Please tell us your impressions when you first saw Tsukushi Mincho.

A letter is an invention, a tool for spelling a word

The first Tsukushi Mincho that you showed me was printed out on paper, but at that time I had a problem that I ran across my head.

Many designers like old typefaces (metal type) and feel that they are excellent not only in beauty as a visual object, but also in design or sense. To put it another way, it seems that the divinity resides in it. New typefaces continue to be developed even after the age of typesetting and typesetting, but it has always been said that typesetting is excellent. People feel that they have half the nostalgia for printing, and not just the nostalgia-it has an affinity for our lives, body, and sensibility. What exactly is that? Nowhere has this been elucidated. At that time, when Fujita-san (chikushi designer) arrived, there was no so-called de facto standard for the Mincho Text.

Why can't such a standard be established? The first answer to this question is that, frankly, I think that the fact that I was trying to design a typeface as "visible" from the beginning has an effect.

A character is an invention or a tool for reading a word for yourself or someone else to hear, or a word for spelling a word, as a function before being a visual object. The letters should have had little basis in terms of visual aesthetics such as aesthetic beauty. Words are visualized and shown there only when you want to get out of your thoughts and feelings inside and outside through your own body, to put it on the media, or to spread it on the duplicated media. If it is also a thing, the role of letters will become conscious.

Shouldn't it be a single word "clean typeface"?

In other words, the starting point of design may be a little different. Although it is described as a "pretty typeface", a beautiful typeface is not necessary for communication in words. You just have to convey it. So, what does a person who needs a character attach to it? It can be will, anger, joy, or emotion. I thought that it would not be possible to put together a value-added thing that expresses in characters including such things with just one word, "a beautiful typeface".

It seems that it is not the visual elements of the typeface itself that give the individual's thoughts and feelings of life, but rather the marginal parts around the letters, blurring, and noise. In the part, the typesetting surface should be uneven depending on the emotion. That was the case with the typefaces that were typeset, and there were a lot of cases where characters were skipped or crushed. But unless it's too terrible, I don't hear much about readers complaining about skipping or crushing letters at the social problem level. Moreover, the newspapers used to be in typography until recently, so it was pretty rattling.

But why did you call it "dirty"? Or maybe it's dirty, but have they all been scraped off and covered with a "clean" Packaging? As a result, modern graphic design has a different meaning from the original "cleanliness", and it has come to be appreciated that it is refreshing.

The other Mincho typefaces, which were created after DTP became mainstream, gradually became closer to a virtual body whose characters were generally square. When such a typeface is assembled, one line suddenly rises, and even if there are many kana characters or sentences with many kanji, it will be a typeset surface with little difference in density and unevenness. You must have called it "pretty".

Tsukushi Mincho I could see a variety of typefaces I knew so far.

In other words, "homogeneous typeface" was expressed using the term "clean typeface". If it is a typeface that is composed of one line with digital fonts and does not need to be filled with letters, it may look beautiful as one area, but especially for philosophy books, When you write a poem, you can't be homogeneous. Because it's a word.

In the content that tries to touch a person's deep feelings, the reader does not care about the typeface itself, and perhaps, in order to touch the deep part while reading, I draw a landscape different from the letters in my head. Isn't it? As you read, the moment you feel a touch of a word, you will be at rest. Instead of stopping and staring at the letters, I am touching them with all the activities that take place in my whole body. I think there was a situation where I had to decide to some extent that, while there was such a reading site, a certain digital design was typesetting and this was tomorrow morning.

Prior to DTP, only professionals, such as print shops and typesetting people, could directly touch the letters. Especially Text. At the time, when I asked what the average value of those standards was, in the hands of an unspecified number of designers, I had to add something to the standard. I see. DTP was about 15 years old. This was a very difficult task, so even if I had to go to the next stage, I was still in the Mincho style.

Almost at the same time that you first showed Tsukushi Mincho, I already had a prototype for Heading Mincho. I had the impression that it looked like handwriting, diverged to the outside, and became rough.

It was felt that they had a completely different direction from the Mincho type for DTP that existed at that time. Until then, there were already Shuei Mincho and Tsukiji typeface, and many of them were designed based on the idea of making adjustments to the square virtual body by using them as a base to find the time. I think Speaking of Fontworks, it is something like Matisse. Meanwhile, Tsukushi Mincho saw various print patterns I knew until now.

For example, "to". I felt something similar to the first stroke of "to" by Minaka Ishii. again". Not a Xiu Ying of the current typesetting Shuei Mincho in, if there are very thin and become sharply aspect in about just 24 points, made of Fujita's on "or" is that it was felt. Memories from everywhere were everywhere. What is the memory? What I mentioned earlier is probably not just the appearance as a figure, which was probably carried by the typeface, and could never be passed on by computer or typesetting. It is engraved like a gene in Tsukushi Mincho.

Tsukushi Mincho, feeling of use for dressing

Please tell us about Tsukushi Mincho and the dressing.

Something close to the existence of the book itself

The dressing is that the title of the book must stand first, and that it should be as big and thick as possible has been taken for granted. Fortunately, I often work on philosophical books and thought books, and although they are the most advanced ideas of the times, they are not expected to sell tens of thousands of copies. .. The readers of such books and the editors involved in the production of books also have a limited range to some extent. I've been looking for a typeface, especially Mincho typeface, that I can communicate with such people by dressing. At that time, the Utsushiken Shuei Mincho and body, Yomiuri Ming (YEM), in some cases, but I think that was using well the Gothic, though I was not actually used, does not come nicely to the very much "book" .. I've always wanted something close to the existence of the book itself.

When I started working from the background of letterpress, the typefaces were only available in Mincho and Gochi. Sometimes I have an antique body. You can only specify the font size that is already established for the typeface of the printing company that prints. Even if you know the glyphs roughly, depending on the point size, the glyphs are completely different even in one typeface family. For example, when entering a designation, say "Mincho ○Po, 2 lines," etc., and write only Gochi (G) only where the author wrote Gothic, and then just specify the position. Perhaps because of that experience, I think there was a notion of something like that.

Design that shows the existence of the Text of the book as a costume

It seems to me that the work is very crude, but looking back, it was surprisingly good, and I was able to say that it was quite advanced in typesetting.

Make one book in one typeface. I am not trying to imitate anything in letterpress, but through one logic of making in one typeface, it is also necessary to be able to dress up in Mincho for Text. I've always thought that it should be done once. If you change points, typefaces, etc. in various ways by complicated parameters, the logic will be twisted and become a different thing.

In the early days of DTP, I began to dress up, thinking that kind of thing. Then, as expected, the publishers say that the typeface is thin. Therefore, I raised the problem. "Is it inconspicuous?" "Is it difficult to read?" "No, that's not the case, but it's usually fat." It would be buried if the ordinary was realized...

Tsukushi Mincho appeared in such a situation, and it was fully established without the need to use photographs or add a lot of colors as what was called a costume. In other words, I think that it was established in my own way that there could be a design that expresses the existence of the Text of the book as described above as it is. Then, after going through many sites, I am now planning to deal with it in the narrow Mincho. I think Mr. Fujita, who was designed, has any thoughts on this...

And I didn't tell this to Mr. Fujita, but about "No" of Tsukushi Mincho. The character "no" is very strange when viewed as a figure. Morisowa's Shozo Motoki's book also has a peculiar "no" character in the cover, but the role of the phonological "no" in the text. For example, the phrase "design idea" does not say anything exactly. "Economic ecology", "design idea"... I don't know.

I'm not sure, but the fact that both parties are in close contact with each other really illustrates the "no" shape. It is neither a circle nor a straight curve. It also makes me feel the ambiguity that it is not necessary to make a logical decision. Also, when looking at a typeface, the first thing from "no" is that it should be a standard method for designers, but this is a straight line as if I was conscious of that. Imagine that this is a character that is located at the center of the Japanese syllabary, and I think this is a neutral character.

Tsukushi Mincho 's "neutral" has a neutral character, but when I took in all the elements, as a result, the characteristics disappeared a little... Interestingly, there are no similar "no"s without the feature.

I don't know exactly how Mr. Fujita was thinking and created it, but the typeface itself is not so interesting to say. However, the amount of information in the text itself is very high, because the trial and error of that and this and other things are fully packed. The amount of information is not limited to the beautiful and supple graphic parts and the visual appearance. Something comes out on various radicals and elements and has a presence. Therefore, if you make a quick line and control the space between characters and make them resonate well, you will have a strong message.

The work of dressing is quite suitable for exploring the relationship between words and letters. That was how I initially felt about the relationship between typeface and design.

Tsukushi Mincho to Text

So please tell us about Tsukushi Mincho and the 46-size format.

Factors that made it difficult for the standard Japanese tomorrow morning

Recently, the size of the letters for the Text of the 46-format has risen to 10 points in points and 14 in terms of series.

As you know, the development project for InDesign's App targeted the magazine DTP. There is no standard in magazines. As the name suggests, it should be cluttered and unstable, and in such a situation, a typeface with a short life may seem more attractive.

That's good, but perhaps that's why we've developed various typefaces for magazines, and as a result, everyone has come to think that there is no standard Mincho.

If we decide that, what kind of field should we have set is probably the second reason why the standard Japanese Mincho hasn't come out yet.

If there is a skeleton in Japanese publishing, it is probably a bookbinding in 46 format. Although this is not a big deal for the total number of sales, the number of publications is overwhelming. It is completely nonsense that this is not included as the default document setting of InDesign, and rather, I do not need that legal size, so I asked for 46 and new book size by default.

Not only visual beauty is important, but affinity with the body

If you fold all 46 sheets of paper into 32 pages and fold it on one side, you can get 64 pages per book. With it, you can make a paperback book or a 46-format version. 64 pages can be popped from 1 sheet of paper, and if it is 4 sheets, it will be 256 pages. 256 pages is the number of pages in a typical book.

4 sheets of paper. And how is the Mincho body in it? One thing that comes out is the print type of Seikosha, although not very much. Next in the computer, Mincho Honba came in by default per letterpress printing. I don't know if it's sales, but I think this is a very large area.

The 46-size format is especially easy to read, and the letters are closer to people than magazines. When you buy a 200-page monthly magazine and try to read it, the percentage of people who bought it is not so expensive. In fact, the macro part of touching the entire magazine is strong, and it seems that it is difficult to reach the typeface of the Text. On the other hand, if you buy the 46-size format, you can read it to the end unless it is boring, so you can definitely tell the reader's body whether it is easy to read or difficult to read without paying special attention to the typeface.

Perhaps the most important thing is not just the visual beauty I mentioned at the beginning, but the affinity with the body. Therefore, it is quite difficult to use, but Tsukushi Mincho is of course suitable for 46 size, and I personally have been developing A5 size Tsukushi Mincho so far. It is not only the typeface itself that carries typographical things that were not in the computer, but also the state when printed.

From here on, there are technical and design issues. There is a book all made by Tsukushi Mincho all are L of Tsukushi Mincho except where specified by the author. Still enough. It was well received by the authors. I think Suzuki and I are just standing at the point where we will make more and more full-size books in the Chikushu Tsukushi Mincho era.

Characters that highlight the meaning of words

What is the typeface for Mr. Toda? Please tell us your thoughts and feelings regarding the typeface and characters in general.


By all means we use letters. If you have to live in the media, you can't just write by hand. Graphic design is the process of recording, so the most important thing is letters and photos. Photos are impressive, so you can do it yourself.

Characters, on the other hand, are absolutely necessary for multiple records to come from media. I would like to see a design with a little more realism that strives for "healing" in our lives, that is, to calm people's hearts. It's embarrassing, but it's not "healing" but "healing." Otherwise, design will end up being an easy operation. If you change the arrangement of this and this, it looks different. It looks, but it doesn't mean it's different. Then, the typeface that makes the basis for all of them becomes very important.

Now that we are in a world like this, I think it would be nice if there were more situations where individuals could come into direct contact with information as much as possible and think about what kind of design would come out of it.

From now on, the typeface that will be touted will not have the emotions and thoughts clearly highlighted.

For example, a long time ago, everyone was surprised to see that the newspaper Heading first said "Iraq attack". However, when it gets used to it, it is described as "Iraq War". After all, war and attack are completely different. Nobody excuses it. When words are entangled and a typeface presentation is made in a newspaper, to put it clearly, a typeface like Tsukushi Mincho is relatively disliked. From now on, the typeface that will be touted will not have the emotions and thoughts clearly highlighted. I think that's what it is.

About Tsukushi Mincho In "d/SIGN No. 9", you can see Mr. Suzuki's remarks and my remarks, but they are almost the same. Mr. Suzuki called it "Yakuza typeface," and I said it was "a rough typeface." I feel that there is something in this typeface that can't be suppressed, and if both of them are the same, I think so.

The words that just happened to appear are "Iraq attack", "Iraq war" and other Ming Dynasty. Somehow, it seems that the meaning that is transmitted does not change much. However, when I build it in Chikushi, the image changes suddenly in my head, and I feel that the difference in meaning is surprising.

Product names appearing in the text are registered trademarks of their respective companies.

Profile of Tsutomu Toda

Born in Tokyo in 1951. graphic designer. Since 1980, he has focused his work on editorial design. Many bookbinding styles including modern thought books. With the publication of "Mori no Shoto" in 1989, the possibility of DTP was quickly shown domestically and internationally. In the 90's, he was deeply involved in high-definition Video production, digital content production, and the development of Adobe InDesign. Since then, many design and art directions for newspapers and magazines. Professor at Kobe University of Art and Design. Books "Tomographic Encyclopedia" (Hokueisha 1986), "Garden City" (Doubutsu 1986) "D-ZONE Editorial Design 1975-1999" (Seidosha 1999) "To Electronic Thinking" (Nikkei Inc. 2001) Year) "Shadow theory" (Seidosha 2012) and others

Articles in the same Categories


Related article