Every letter. Every space. Every line space.
Every bit of it is intentional. It is deliberate.
Why am I writing about typesetting and the care it requires? Mostly because I am in a reflective mood on this last day of summer break. I am just winding down the second 8-week session of my doctoral program, and I am thinking about what it will take to get to the finish line. Also, it's a school night—PD session tomorrow morning, followed by a staff meeting. Tuesday is a teacher work day, and the students return Wednesday!
And, I want to ensure that all of my actions are intentional. I want to continue to learn and grow, and I want the same for the students. They deserve it. And, maybe if that intentional type of learning is modeled for them, it just might stick.
Side note: someone asked about the picture in my previous post. Specifically, the question addressed the way in which spacing is achieved within the words and the material at the end of the bottom line. The answer lies in quads and spacers (pictured above). Much like kerning and tracking on digital text layouts, there are defined widths used in letterpress. However, working with metal type is more like mortising.
Have I bored you to tears yet? Good. The em dash
and the (more common) en dash form the basic units of spacing. For filling larger spaces, furniture and reglets
are needed. Typesetting requires careful intent and deliberation...which is why it is such a great metaphor for learning.