Know Your Type Designer
Insigne Design was founded as DooleyType in 2004 with the release of the typeface Biortec. Since then, Insigne Design has released a wide variety of quality typefaces, including sans serifs, scripts, serifs and experimental forms. Insigne Design prides itself on its unique and affordable fonts. Insigne Design of Atlanta, Georgia, is the foundry of Jeremy Dooley. Jeremy has traveled extensively and lived in both Europe and the Middle East.
Jeremy just released Majidah, currently #2 on our Starlets page. Majidah replicates the look and feel of an ancient script taken from the pages of an antique document. It has a Middle Eastern feel to it but can be used in a variety of applications. He also recently released Yevida, currently #12 on our Best Sellers list. Like Majidah, Yevida is a script font with a slightly Arabic twist. It includes a number of advanced OpenType features, including alternates, ligatures, and old style figures. We like its elegant flair, which makes it perfect for invitations. Other Insigne Design releases include:
- Qurillian, a futuristic sans serif typeface that is very readable
- Blue Goblet, an alternative, experimental script family developed for an illustrated children’s book
We interviewed Jeremy about his background as well as his take on all things typographic.
Jeremy, please tell us a little about your background and experience.
I was born to a military family in the United States, and spent most of my childhood overseas. My family did a lot of traveling, and I am sure that my exposure to other cultures has given me a broader perspective on design that many do not get to experience. I completed an undergraduate degree in graphic design, and still wanting to hone my skills even further, I was accepted into the graduate program at the Savannah College of Art and Design. I completed a master’s degree in graphic design there, and then moved to Atlanta, Georgia to work for a small medical lab startup as the communications coordinator. For the past few years I have been designing fonts in my spare time.
How did you get started in font design?
I would say I had an epiphany while working on my undergraduate degree in graphic design. I was working on a poster project; the requirements were basic – it had to feature a typeface, and use only characters or components of characters from that typeface. I chose Univers. At first, I struggled with the project, but soon stumbled on the idea to use part of the U as brackets to frame the piece. I was amazed when studying that simple U form; just one point in either direction would have made for a much less effective design; it was perfection. After that realization, I wanted to work with type till I too could design forms as well as that. I started small, trying to complete a typeface design per project to develop a more original and effective solutions. Eventually, I released some of these through MyFonts.
You’ve just released two very popular script fonts that have a Middle Eastern feel to them. How do you decide on the kind of typeface design you want to develop?
Sometimes when I am out driving around town, walking through a mall, I see just brief flashes; starts of ideas that are unique and interesting. I write these inspirations down, and they eventually become typefaces. Some of my typeface ideas have come from reading about how the dyslexic mind works, a sign seen from the wrong angle, and theories from art history.
Can you tell us the process you go through in designing a font?
Once I have the basic idea, from one of the “flashes” I mentioned above, I sketch out just a few characters. Through a process of abstraction, erasure and addition, I eventually have the forms I need to start developing the other characters. I set parameters, or rules for the design, (rounded forms, a specific tail, etc.) and go from there. I find that I like to keep the forms as simple as possible. You can even see this in my script face, Yevida.
You started out as DooleyType but just recently re-invented yourself as Insigne Design. Can you tell us what led you to make this decision?
As my typefaces have grown in popularity, I have tried to increase the quality of my offerings and work towards launching a full time operation. The change in name from DooleyType to Insigne is a way to signify this new, more intense focus. There is something for everyone at Insigne, but right now, I especially want freelancers and other self-employed design professionals to be able to use our unique, high quality typeface designs. As such, all of our faces are very affordable.
What happened to the font Jon Cary?
A casualty of the “reinvention” above. It just didn’t fit with where I wanted to go.
What typeface designs are you working on now? When can we expect to see them at MyFonts?
I have a list of ideas that I keep. I reorder them based on criteria like what the market is looking for, but primarily, I try to look for new challenges and break new ground. So far, my offerings include sans serifs, serifs, futuristic looking faces, grungy faces and a few scripts. I don’t like to do similar faces or ideas back to back – I want to work on new challenges, and return to ideas with new knowledge learned from those other projects.
What’s your favorite typeface, and why?
Ever since the poster project I mentioned earlier, I have been a huge fan of Adrian Frutiger. Of his typefaces, I like Frutiger the best, but am also a fan of Meridien and Vectora.
What font do you never, ever want to see used again?
Well, there are many overused (but still amazing) fonts that I was going to pick on, but I guess I will have to jump on the bandwagon and go with Arial. Arial has few redeeming qualities and it’s an easy target.
Do you work full-time as a font designer?
On December 5th I will be leaving my job in a medical laboratory to design typefaces full time. Expect more high quality designs from Insigne, and a lot more of them than in the past.
Thanks, Jeremy! We look forward to seeing your new typeface designs soon!