How I Become a Type Advisor

Since the release of my book, Vietnamese Typography, in the winter 2015, I have had the opportunity to collaborate with type designers and type foundries around the world. I reviewed their diacritics and made recommendations to improve legibility and readability for Vietnamese readers.

When I decided to drop my book on the open web, I wanted to provide a complete resource for designing Vietnamese diacritics. I did not think about the advising service until David Jonathan Ross reached out to me to review his hyper-stylized typeface called Fit. As the name of the typeface suggested, everything must fit—even the diacritics. The double-stacked marks in Vietnamese proved to be a challenge. We went back and forth many rounds until we came to the perfect fit. In our collaborative efforts, I learned about his design process and decision making.

After my work with David, I realized I could offer similar advice to other type designers. As my site reached the type community, requests for reviewing Vietnamese diacritics rolled in from different parts of the world, including Dalton Maag in London, TypeTogether in Vinohrady, Sandoll in Seoul, Fontwerk in Berlin, Grilli Type in Lucerne, Klim Type Foundry in Wellington, TypeNetwork in Seattle, and Frere-Jones Type in Brooklyn. For a complete list, visit my client section.

In addition to typefaces, I review apps, websites, and any materials with Vietnamese text. As a result, I added type advisor to my resúmé to make the title official.