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Q&A with Jos Buivenga

Self-taught type designer & founder of exljbris Font Foundry

I am Jos Buivenga, self-taught type designer and founder of exljbris Font Foundry. Because of the succes of my free fonts I could eventually attract a lot of people to the paid fonts. Since 2009 I was able to make a living out of type design.


My work space consists of a Mac Pro with four 24" Apple Cinema Displays attached. Type design is all about looking and comparing, so the more screen real estate the better.


FontLab, Prepolator, Superpolator. In FontLab I draw the "master" fonts, usually a regular and a bold or heavy weight. With Superpolator I check if all contour orders and points are equal in both masters. Superpolator lets me interpolate and extrapolate new instances of the both masters so I can extend a font family to (mostly) 5 weights.

Dream setup 

My dream setup, would be the new Mac Pro with 3 Apple 27" displays attached. One display in front of me and the other two on the right, one on top of the other.


My inspiration comes from sketches and doodles I make in little sketch books, sometimes from playing around in FontLab and sometimes from an idea I picture in my head.