Copyright 2010 Philip Bouwsma. Published by Canada Type. All rights reserved.
The lifetime of Lorenzo de Medici (1449-1492) coincides with the rise of metal type as it displaced broad pen calligraphy for the production of books. This revolution marked the end of formal Western calligraphy, as the industry employed metalworkers who designed type according to geometric measurement while calligraphers were forced to become secretaries who practiced handwriting systems. Renaissance Florence should have witnessed the marriage of calligraphy and typography, just as all the other arts and sciences flourished as classical learning was applied to technical advances; but the metalworkers and geometricians measured, dissected and recast the calligraphic letters by crude indirect methods, and in the end took all the life out of them. Here they languished until digital type has made it possible to render the precise motion of the broad pen stroke into type.
Lorenzo is a confluence of many strains from the Middle Ages, brought together within the classical harmony of the capitals. It attempts to bypass metal type, using calligraphic means to achieve the precision of type while retaining the life of the stroke: a classical font that would be familiar to Lorenzo himself as well as to the modern eye.
The Lorenzo family comes in four weights, ranging from light to bold. Two sets of italics, one with swashed caps and ascenders, complement each weight. The family boasts extensive language support and an offering of over fifty calligraphic ornaments/flourishes included within the character set.