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The Lost Art of Type Punch Cutting

The film of the lost art of type punch cutting, initiated by Rod McDonald and Sheridan College in Canada, and narrated by Matthew Carter, will inspire typographers, designers, typophiles, students and educators alike. It is possible that it’s the only documentary of a master engraver cutting a punch in existence.

In 1956, Canadian graphic designer Carl Dair was honored to study type making under master letter-engraver P. H. Rädisch at the Joh. Enschedé en Zonen Type Foundry in Holland. It was during this time that he recorded a silent documentary showing Rädisch hand-cutting a type punch. The footage was later archived for almost 60 years before Carter and McDonald became aware of it and agreed that it was an important part of typographic history and should be restored. Carter agreed to narrate the film, since he had apprenticed at Enschedé the year before Dair, making him uniquely qualified to explain the various processes demonstrated in the captured film.

Monotype, via Fonts.com, is making the film available at no cost. To discover more about the history of how this film came to be, or to download it for free, click here.