The typeface Tycho started as a college project in collaboration with Landskrona Museum, Sweden. The brief was to design a typeface to be used for print and signage at the associated Tycho Brahe Museum on the island of Ven.
The printed works of Tycho Brahe, printed on the same island, was the natural starting point for the project. After careful examination of some of the original books Epistolarum Astronomicarum Liber Primus (printed in 1596) was chosen as the main source of inspiration.
However, it soon became clear that the font used in the book was of very poor quality and most likely a mix of several diferent fonts. As a result the work shifted from pure revival to the design of a new typeface that took inspiration from – but was not faithful to – the fonts found in the book.
The italic is a totally new design. Although there are italics in Epistolarum Astronomicarum Liber Primus it seemed more appropriate to design an italic that would match the new Tycho typeface rather than the original font used in the book.
The letterforms of the italic are based on my own calligraphy, but the construction details of the letters (the visible returning stroke) owe a great deal to the gorgeous italic of Fred Smeijer’s Renard.
Tycho Book is a strictly intended for editorial use in small sizes (6 to 12 points), while Tycho Display is designed for setting short texts such as signs or book titles in 30 points or greater.