Type Designer at Luzi Type
Luzi
Gantenbein

Luzi grew up in the Swiss Alps, runs his typefoundry and designs typefaces.

Bern, Switzerland • May 3, 2022

What led you into design?

Since I was a kid, I was always into drawing. I used to publish a daily comic at my elementary school entrance. Drawing was always an exciting activity for me. When I was older, I picked Graphic Design, which was something you could learn at the university. In my early years of working, something always drew me to type. Typography is hard but also does not require a lot of resources to start.

What does a typical day look like?

I get up around 8 o’clock, then I walk ten minutes to my studio in the old town of Bern. First, I prepare my mate tee; I used to live my twenties in Chile and Uruguay. Then I start with emails, and later I am developing further my current type design project. I try to always have one single project at the time.

Before lunch, a yoga break and then working until 17 o’clock. After work, I pick up my daughter from kindergarten, and then I make a tasty dinner. In the evenings, I enjoy the time with my wife or meet some friends in the city.

What’s your workstation setup?

I have a quite plain office, with a book collection, desk and large monitor and a regular laser printer. I mainly design my typeface in the application Glyphs.

Where do you go to get inspired?

Inspiration can come from a lot of places; urban landscape, hand made signings or old books. I love to snoop around flea markets when I am travelling. A great starter for a new typeface can be an abstract conceptual idea. Conversations with friends who are not working in the visual field can also be inspiring.

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What product have you recently seen that made you think this is great design?

I love the design of the Moka Express, the iconic espresso machine from Bialetti. A unique piece of design from my childhood which I still use every day. It is the perfect blend of functionality, industrial production and humour.

Foto Hans Veneman, Alfonso Bialetti, 1933

What pieces of work are you most proud of?

I see my work as a sum of all its individual parts. I am proud of my long-term relations with my clients which are using my typefaces. Hearing their feedback makes me happy and thankful.

What design challenges do you face at your company?

It is sometimes hard to handle the whole office-side with me-designing-new-typefaces-side. Losing focus is easy when switching between two tasks. However, I am getting better at this.

What music do you listen to whilst designing?

Any advice for ambitious designers?

Something I learned so-far is; excellence comes with an investment of time. It is important to start somewhere, my early work was not refined from my point of view today. I published my first three typefaces back in 2013, since then I reworked and reworked these fonts. It was essential to get into a dialogue with users, this was the only way to progress my skills. So, my advice is; don’t be shy, start somewhere and try to improve constantly.

Anything you want to promote or plug?

Sure, I have a website with all my typefaces, free trial versions and an interesting blog.