Type Night in Vancouver

Armed with everything from good old-fashioned gossip to documented evidence, type designer and amateur historian Rod McDonald will take you through some of the surprisingly rich and varied history of type and lettering in Canada.

Don’t worry, although Canada is a big country, it has a short typographic history. You will see the work of some remarkable Canadian talent. Some well-known internationally, some barely known within their own country, and some soon to be well known everywhere. Rod also intends to set the record straight on a few typefaces—and their designers. So be prepared to be both informed and entertained.


Event support partner: Type Brigade

GDC BC and Hemlock Printers Ltd. will also present the 2017 Jim Rimmer Community Scholarship for Design Award, two awards valued at $1000. Learn more about Jim Rimmer's legacy and how to apply. Application deadline: November 17, 2017.

Rod McDonald has over forty years experience working with lettering and type. Much of his career was spent providing hand lettering and typographic styling to the Toronto advertising and design community. He was one of the first typographers to switch to the “Mac” in the mid ’80s and was soon providing custom fonts to ad agencies and design studios. He has designed logos for many leading Canadian magazines including Applied Arts, Maclean’s and Toronto Life. He has also created typefaces for these, and other magazines and corporations. He has taught typography at the Ontario College of Art & Design and NSCAD University in Halifax.

Rod’s typefaces include Cartier™ Book, his interpretation of Canada’s first
typeface, the Laurentian family, a highly successful magazine face originally developed for Maclean’s, Smart Sans™, named after Canadian design pioneer Sam Smart, his best selling Slate™ and Egyptian Slate™- families, ITC Handel Gothic™ and Gibson, a typeface he produced to honor John Gibson. Designed as an affordable font family for students, and to combat type piracy, all the proceeds from the sales of Gibson go to the Society of Graphic Designers of Canada (GDC) Design Education Committee. He continues to design custom faces for a wide variety of clients.

Rod is a fellow of the Society of Graphic Designers of Canada (GDC).