The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

Coming out of the five AW Conqueror families, the AW Conqueror Didot is a very complete extension claiming the 60-70s spirit. With this new Didot 2018, we go further by offering 24 weights. The three hairline variations (optical sizes) allows use in large high contrast headlines such as a legible body text, due to a suitable contrast. A large number of titling variants have been added to the delight of artistic directors in search of exuberant compositions.

The tight composition typical of the 70s

The AW Conqueror Didot version 2018, is a nod to the spirit of phototype typefaces and transfer lettering from the early 70’s. Founded by Ed Rondthaler, Photo-lettering catalogs swarmed with more daring typefaces than the others. Both transfer letter and phototitling have liberated the principle of letter-to-letter spacing, previously impossible with metal type. Phototype allowed operators to position millimeters, on the fly, letter after letter: words, sentences according to the specifications of the art director.

By the mid-1960s, freed from the constraints of metal type, the first phototype catalogs were full of swashed variants from the great classics of typography. Among them, the Photo Bookman and other families, such as the Sixties Bookman offered “mod” swash letters and many glyphs variants. With a relative low contrast, but with many variations, this typographic style was widely used in titling in publishing as in advertising. Later, ITC published its version of the Bookman, and at the same time, studios such as the Herb Lubalin one’s could use this style of typefaces, customizing titling settings, customizing letters to better support a concept.

“Herb Lubalin would condense letterforms and shift proportions, editing typography to fit the specific solution—something that is sometimes lost in modern graphic design.” — Ellen Lupton

  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography
  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography

With Pistilli, it is the other side of the spectrum of weight contrast which is approached. This typeface appears quite complete in 1964 with the announcement of a typeface design competition organized by Aaron Burns then at Visual Graphics Corporation (VGC). Pistilli, rather compact, is designed as a contemporary very high contrast sixties Didot, which allows “tight compositions without touching”, typical of the Photo-lettering and Letraset era. Pistilli which appears to be the result of several years of collaboration between John Pistilli and Herb Lubalin was widely used during this period, even though Pistilli is published at VGC after Herb Lubalin’s departure. Tom Carnase (who learned alongside John Pistlli) and others, regularly adapted this style to typographic compositions: always there to better serve the editorial in the service of the concepts of Herb Lubalin, the latter being passionate about “word-play.” In France, available at Typogabor, Mediavilla (by the calligrapher Claude Mediavilla), offered many variants adorned with its bold capitals with high contrast. These high-contrast characters of the 70s remain influenced by the first very fat Didot of the nineteenth century, called Normandes in France.

  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography
  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography
  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography

The influences of AW Conqueror Didot

When the AW Conqueror super family was launched in 2011, these ideas and references were already there, but it is by adding weights and variations of contrasts a few years later, that suddenly, this spirit 60s-70s is revealed as an obviousness. The AW Conqueror Didot version 2018 offers many variations of glyphs in capitals as well as in lowercases, all powered by OpenType features, making typesetting easier for the user. In addition, we have imagined a complete series of capitals, numbers, and other dingbats in blocks that, via OpenType functions, allows you to create various adjustable boxes in the middle of your texts.

This family, like Pistilli, is solely designed in Roman. Its aim is to serve the most demanding headline settings, in ultra large sizes, mixed with intermediate type sizes, while keeping the coherence of the contrasts of the hairline through all sizes. Art directors in publication design, should find their account, especially if they are as fascinated by this spirit 60-70s as Jean François Porchez is. If the AW Conqueror Didot had been available at this period of history, it could have found its place on 70s jazz, soul and funk album covers, as in fashion magazines of the same period, or editorial projects, covers of successful books from this period. But we are in 2018, and it is of course to contemporary designers to find such a surprising use, mixing any references unrelated to the 70s.

  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography
  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography
  • AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography

A word about the team in charge of AW Conqueror Didot

The AW Conqueror super family started in 2010 was designed by Jean François Porchez, assisted by Mathieu Réguer for some family members, then joined by Malou Verlomme. In the following years, the AW Conqueror Didot develops, and Jean François Porchez imagines Black weights. Around 2016, Benjamin Blaess takes care of the finalization which will require extreme precision under the watchful eye of Jean François, adding many swash variants in lowercase and ensuring OpenType programming, kerning pairs, etc. In the future, other versions of the AW Conqueror family seems plausible, such as the extensions of AW Conqueror Sans under development.

The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

The new AW Conqueror Didot pays homage to 70s phototype typography by Jean Francois Porchez

AW Conqueror Didot: Availability of the new typeface family

AW Conqueror Didot: Digital fonts now include more than 838 glyphs per font, extended language support, 4 sets of numerals, capitals, small capitals, lowercases, superiors, ligatures, many swash variants, special capitals for boxes compositions, dingbats, etc.

The new AW Conqueror Didot fonts in OpenType format are available in Std and ePub format as well as in the PRO version which is exclusive. the specimen in pdf from AW Conqueror Didot (AW Conqueror Didot specimen) for all the details about advanced typography features. Download Try-out versions!

→ € 45 – € 55 for one of the AW Conqueror Didot Std or Pro styles
→ € 119 – € 146 for the mini family of 4 AW Conqueror Didot Std or Pro fonts
→ € 627 – € 766 for the Complete family AW Conqueror Didot of 24 fonts Std or Pro

AW Conqueror Didot

AW Conqueror Didot in use

As a tradition, at Typofonderie, we test a new typeface family on various applications, using existing designs. It’s the final step of any project and it’s great fun for us. See our Fonts in use section for more.

Project: cover version of Lets talks type
Project: Cover version of Let’s talks type let type talks originally designed by Herb Lubalin in 1959, featuring a lettering by John Pistilli.

Project: cover version of Jojo Moyes Penguins books
Project: cover version of Jojo Moyes Penguins books
Project: cover version of Jojo Moyes Penguins books
Project: Cover version of Jojo Moyes Penguins books originally designed by Robert de Vicq and Nick Misani in 2015.

Project: cover version of International Typeface Corporation Present
Project: Cover version of International Typeface Corporation Present. Originally designed by Hearb Lubalin and Tom Carnase, 1971.

Project: cover version of Curtis Mayfield SuperFly
Project: Cover version of Curtis Mayfield SuperFly soul album, 1972, probably designed by Glen Christensen (tbc).

Project: cover version of Curtis Mayfield SuperFly
Project: Cover version of Graphis Annual reports, originally designed by Herb Lubalin, 1971.

AW Conqueror Didot: Download the Try-out version!

We’re very pleased to announce that the AW Conqueror Didot OpenType Full Family of 24 fonts is available in Try-out format: This license solely grants you the rights for preparatory works, evaluation and internal testings and must only be used by the licensed owner. Neither production, nor final sketch, nor final artwork are permitted.

→ Download for free the AW Conqueror Didot Full Family of 24 fonts in Try-out format