The accommodations on the trip were top notch, thanks to our kind sponsor.
We will continue to blog the process on these fonts, so check back soon!
I've been on trips before. Met people I've only heard about before. Even been reminded why the West Coast is geographically superior to its East Coast brother before. But those were only supplementary discoveries to this trip. And it's not just the sum of our experiences that totals our time spent in reverie, it's something different altogether. We went out to California to exchange stories, to acquaint ourselves with someone else, and to build a typeface(s). I'm pleased to say we did all of the above.
But I think the most astounding part of the whole week is when I think about the idea that this typeface is still a work in progress. It wasn't born, perfected and distributed in 4 days. The very concept of type as a work in progress is a sign a craftsmanship--the potter acknowledging that as far as the clay has come, it's not done yet. That this "work in progress" might only be the beginning. And in a lot of ways, so are we all.
I believe we're living in a generation that has a more difficult time with the idea of "heroes" than any time before. It's not always so black and white. Looking at the new archetype of our superheroes in anything from film to comics and you won't see the old world structure of wholly good vs. wholly evil. Most of them are human beings, broken and flawed, fighting against what they see as an injustice in the world. The Dark Knight being a primary example of all this. We're privileged enough to see a sense of humanism in our new heroes but it makes *having* heroes a different sort of worldview.
I spent time this trip with those I've called "hero" before. I think my favorite part of the entire week was sharing meals and drinks and stories in an exchange where no one felt like a hero and no one felt like a fan boy. We were all content just to be here and now. Those we look up to and aspire to be like, those we've wanted to learn a technique or two from, those we've wanted to ask how they see the world like they do just to allow us to see it through their eyes for a small window of time.
Everyone on Field Trip SF that I had the privilege of interacting with, from the crew to those we invited over for dinner became a hero of mine. It was inspiring to leave the world of design for a bit to share a meal where we, as people and friends enjoyed the company of those we've admired for so long. I got to do this all week. Believe it or not, all of us have lives outside of design. Things that make us just as passionate to talk about or just as willful to share. It was a unique privilege to be a part of that. Many thanks to Eight Hour Day, Brent Couchman, Morgan Knutson and others for letting our team get to be a part of that.
Coming back home and falling in line with the spin of the world has been an adjustment. But I'm happy to say that while I'm a "work in progress" in so many ways, I can't be more thrilled about what the next chapter of our lives will look like. It's going to be an awfully big adventure.
Over the past few days I've watched as my friends and colleagues moved from mental images to pencil sketches, sketches to vector mockups, and even some initial Fontlab work.
I've watched many styles float across this enormous glass top desk (dining room table) we're all working at, and the fact of the matter is: all of them represent the Mission (referring both to the neighborhood, and our goal for the project).
Isn't it easily as outrageous to create a font in a few days, as it is to sum up a neighborhood this gorgeous with a single font? Quite frankly I think we were overwhelmed to see such gorgeous implementations (in ubiquity) of a few styles we search for on a daily basis (on the internet and elsewhere).
I think its likely we will head back to our respective homes more inspired than ever, with projects in the works that will complete a 'Mission Collection'. A set of display faces that together will arc back to the San Franciscan styles we've had the pleasure of documenting over the past week.
This collection will be bigger and badder, and we cannot wait to see these fonts to completion.
For Four days, a handful of Lost Type's designers will live under one roof with a common goal – to create a typeface inspired by San Francisco. We'll also be visiting with the local talent and venturing into the city as we search for inspiration. Check back for live updates!