The Wonderful World of Insects


Photocomposition Finally Succeeds

This is the first book produced using a radically new method of type composition. In essence, a strobe light was used to selectively expose characters on a rapidly spinning font disk onto photographic paper in the exact order called for by the operator. Though earlier phototypesetting machines had been developed, none were commercially successful until the introduction of the machine on which this book was set. Invented in the 1940s by two Frenchmen, Louis Moyroud and René Higonnet, the device underwent further engineering development and refinement at MIT at a subsidiary organization called the Graphic Arts Research Foundation. Dubbed the Photon, the new machine was released to the market in the early 1950s and launched a new era in typesetting. The machine was marketed in France as the Lumitype and was supplied with fonts by the Deberny & Peignot type foundry. Many of these photo-fonts were adapted from existing metal type or newly designed by the brilliant young type designer Adrian Frutiger.

One other noteworthy fact is that this book was designed by Stefan Salter, a gifted graphic artist over-shadowed by his older brother George Salter, also a book designer.