TDC does sexy type education

Nick Cooke's picture

In a bid to attract new members The Type Directors Club in New York have produced a Veer sponsored booklet entitled "How to Make Love to Your Type."

Design is by Brazilian master designer Roberto De Vicq De Cumptich. It's a bit of fun, but is all a bit rude from the 'female' front cover - (not quite a Brazilian, ;^), to the male back cover, so if you're a bit prudish or easily shocked don't open the pdf.

I'm very proud that Roberto chose Houschka Pro as the text face using style set 2, and I must admit it looks pretty damn sexy!


TDC_brochure_final_1_28.pdf157.14 KB
blank's picture

Not one joke about tittles?

Frode Bo Helland's picture

Haha. Nicely done. And Houschka looks great, Nick!

Don McCahill's picture

I would be interested in what the women think about this brochure. It seemed to carry a great deal of female figures, and very few males. And, since there are a lot of gay typographers, do they also feel left out by this piece?

nina's picture

Dunno if I can speak for «the women», but I for one can't say it appeals to me – I'm not offended or anything (and I really don't think I'm «prudish»), I'm probably just totally outside the target audience. Not only in terms of the male/female dynamics (which does make it feel like this can't be targeted at me – I know there are many more type guys than type girls, but maybe this isn't the best way to change that), to me it also feels too «young», more cheap than witty, and too much like an iPod ad. Sorry to be so negative, just being honest.

blank's picture

Tittle jokes aside, I agree that the booklet is pretty tacky and sexist. Every time I see it I wonder how this one got past Carol's desk. And Nina makes a good point about the number of women in the type design field—in the rest of design women often seem to be at least equal in numbers, and among young designers they dominate. I do wonder if the board was thinking about them when it approved this design.

paul d hunt's picture

sometimes sex doesn't sell...

Jackson's picture

!!!!Not to mention the type on the back cover !!!?

blank's picture

I had to take off my glasses to notice the back cover. Good to see that they managed to stuff in a cock!

dezcom's picture

I find it embarrassing and downright ugly. I don't mean the type, Nick. The type looks great. I mean the concept. It feels like the target audience is middle school diesel truck mechanic wannabees who lost their life-sized inflatable women dolls. We are pandering to putz-pounders instead of elevating our profession.

Si_Daniels's picture

> Every time I see it I wonder how this one got past Carol's desk.

Carol claims she was visiting her brother's dairy farm the week it went to press. In my opinion that's a Cock and Bull story. ;-)

Corey Holms's picture

I think embarrassing is a perfect word for this.

dezcom's picture


Nick Shinn's picture

How to make love to your type? Damn, I was expecting The Story of O.
Yeah, there's an erection, but where's the money shot?
I fear this polite fluffing of the metaphor, quaint and sexist in a kinda sixties way, will leave potential members limp.

david h's picture

a typo error (back cover): BECOME AN OUTSTANDING MEMBER



And Corey is right: embarrassing; and couple drawings are bad

Nick Cooke's picture

Nick - LOL

Well that went down like a sack of shit. But Roberto is Brazilian after all, they have a more 'relaxed' attitude to sex, not so PC.

Type must be taken seriously, but it is all about curves. When I first met my wife I showed her Penguin which I was working on at the time. She took one look at it and said 'You must be thinking about tits and arses all day long'. Quite perceptive, I thought, but maybe not ALL day long.

nina's picture

Nick, like I said, I don't think the problem is anyone here being PC. To me it's more a question of what level one chooses to communicate on. This is heavy-handedly overt in a way we already see more than enough of every day, and that I think fails to connect to the kind of sexiness and magic that working in-depth with type has. Yes, of course there are voluptuous curves in type. But it's deeper than that.
There's so much culture, so much depth in type; precision and sophistication and sensitivity. So much in type is about perception and about insinuation; so much of it is about the unspoken, the invisible. THAT to me is where type and eroticism connect.* And sorry, but this brochure has the precision, sophistication, sensitivity, and, yes, sexiness of a sledge hammer.
It's not about being prude; it's about missing the magic. That of type and that of sex. Maybe that's just me, and maybe I am really just not the target audience.

(* I'm wondering if that might be a male/female rift right there?)

steve.mackley's picture

"It's not about being prude; it's about missing the magic. That of type and that of sex. Maybe that's just me, and maybe I am really just not the target audience."

I couldn't agree more Nina. Well said.

dezcom's picture

Dead on, Nina, about everything you said except the male/female rift part. That isn't it. That thing is just a failure no-matter how you look at it.

Goran Soderstrom's picture

Silhouettes of sexy women?! Jeez... I think that the TDC board (or whoever who runs that place) would be a better place if there were more women involved. Honestly.

Frode Bo Helland's picture

Isn’t there a sexy women silhouette font out there?

dezcom's picture

Frode, that is the font the truckers use to put silhouettes on their mudflaps :-)

Si_Daniels's picture

>Isn’t there a sexy women silhouette font out there?

Yep it's posted here...

Nick Cooke's picture

I love the descriptions on that site. It makes you wonder why people go to all the time and effort of producing that rubbish.

Frode Bo Helland's picture

"Another Great Concept"
Is this font on fire? Has it been gripped by tentacles? All we know is that it's another great font concept!


dezcom's picture

"Honest Fonts"

Jackson's picture

I just want to add...

The TDC is an excellent organization. It's dirt-cheap to become a member.
And they have a lot of good (and free) lectures. Tonight is actually the eighth Type Salon they've had in the last ten weeks(!).

It's also great because, unlike other professional organizations, it's not overrun with half-interested students who just want to milk you for job connections. I've met some awesome type people and made a few real friends there.

dezcom's picture

TDC is a great organization, that is why I hate seeing it stoop to such undignified tactics.

Don McCahill's picture


I don't think we are trashing the TDC here. We are trashing a TDC project.

It made me smile, but then I'm a male chauvinist pig. But even I know that it would not be seen as politically correct.

I had not considered that the designer was Brazilian ... cultural differences may come into effect. But someone at the TDC offices should have reined this one in.

dezcom's picture

The client is not Brazil. The target audience is not only Brazilians or just men, it is worldwide. The objective is to increase membership of those with typographic interests regardless of gender or sexual preference. The Hustler Magazine approach does not succeed in that.

Jackson's picture

I know no one was trashing the TDC, I just wanted to put something positive about them into the discussion. For the lurkers.

William Berkson's picture

Thanks, Nina, you nailed it.

blank's picture

I do have to second Jackson—we only gripe because we all know that TDC is way cooler than AIGA and don’t want to see it slip.

Santiago Orozco's picture

this is so clever, and yes, sometimes sex don't sells, for me it's just to get massive attention.

RobRepta's picture

There's a difference between sexy and trashy, and this was plain trashy, not to mention kind of amateur.

vinceconnare's picture

I've made fonts out of my photographs of Hannah Sandling for her book the 'Lazy Goddess' and they used it throughout the book and my real shots of her on the cover.

Much better than their chosen typefaces in the book is way less sexy than the photographs and silhouettes.

And my silhouettes scale to A2.

nora g's picture

I'm with Nina and others here. And in my opinion it's in so far kind of stylish, but trivial and unimportant, that it seems to be part of the roll backward-trend, we all can see in various fields.

DougBartow's picture

It's difficult to take those silhouetted shapes and make people NOT want to look at them. They've accomplished that in this case.

Joe Pemberton's picture

I'm embarrassed that I tweeted this out from the @Typophile account without reading this thread. I thought the thread title was surely a metaphor, not a poorly conceived bit of typographic self-indulgence.

Disappointed in the TDC.

nina's picture

Joe, since you (i.e. @Typophile) retweeted my link to this thread, apologies if my wording was misleading.

luxuryluke's picture


mmc's picture

Well, I'm Brazilian and I can honestly say that I agree to what has been said here so far, especially Nina's comment. There's no way we have such a different culture that this is more acceptable. It is embarrassing, again, agreed.

Nick Cooke's picture

"I'm beginning to think I made a mistake posting this" is an understatement.

Maybe not one for the portfolio – 'You'll never work in this town again!'

Can we drop it now?

SuperUltraFabulous's picture

What is the difference between disrobing and exposing oneself?

This design is ugly, affected, uninspired, and inappropriate.

On one hand, I am surprised that the TDC would allow such a distasteful design to be used for a (global reaching) type education campaign and so many type “heads of state” are connected with their organization. One the other hand, it’s very obvious the TDC needs to take its own typographic medicine with its increasingly ugly web presence with its atrocious navigation.


PS... I will not preface my unacceptance of this type of blatantly unnecessary sexuality with “I don’t want to sound like a prude” or “PC” and similar wording. The 20% of new yorkers that have genital herpes probably won’t find me being unprogressive.

david h's picture

> I'm beginning to think I made a mistake posting this

Why? Every cloud has a silver lining :)

Jackson's picture

The printed piece showed up in the mail today, looks like they fixed the missing commas.

designpuck's picture

Wow—perhaps it's spending too much time outside the US,

That brochure might have been uninspired in execution, perhaps infantile, and not ironic enough for some in it's use of objectified, impossibly proportioned male/female silhouettes. But it wasn't even close to distasteful. (Distasteful would have required a few spreads involving some type, Eric Gill, an English hunting dog, and sev—well, I won't go on).

If anything raised my cockles, it was the cover (and no, not for the concept): I mean, did anybody else immediately think "Marian Bantjes rip-off"?

Chris Dean's picture

New Durex adds. Now that's making love to type!

riccard0's picture

New Durex ads. Now that's making love to type!

With Hobo?!?!

dezcom's picture

"The printed piece showed up in the mail today"
Too bad they wasted money on printing.

TypeSETit's picture

What's the problem... you people don't like magenta and black?

Syndicate content Syndicate content