James Felici

James Felici has worked in the publishing industry—in both editorial and production—for more than 30 years. A veteran journalist and former managing editor of Publish magazine, he has set type by hand as well as on systems from IBM, Linotype, Compugraphic, CCI, and Magna. His books include The Complete Manual of Typography (Peachpit Press), The Desktop Style Guide (Bantam/ITC), How to Get Great Type Out of Your Computer (North Light), and contributions to The Macintosh Bible (Peachpit Press). He has written for numerous publications, including PC World, Macworld, and The Seybold Report, and has been a featured speaker at Seybold Seminars, Macworld Expo, and other events worldwide.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on September 11, 2013
    Finally, we get to the most important part of any table: its content. Specifically numbers, the trickiest table content of all.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on June 26, 2013
    Rules can make or break a table, and attention to alignments is the key to the visual equilibrium of a table
  • Features: Written by James Felici on June 14, 2013
    More drop cap delights, including how to create partially dropped caps and the best way of dealing with descenders.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on June 12, 2013
    There’s much more to know about creating drop caps than the InDesign of XPress user manuals tell you.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on May 29, 2013
    Setting tables isn’t easy, but with these techniques, you can cut the task down to size.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on May 1, 2013
    Because of your enthusiastic response to my last column, I’ve moved up its sequel. In this installment, I’ll be looking at display and decorative faces.
  • Features: Written by James Felici on April 3, 2013

    History is cruel to typefaces—especially text faces—and very few stand the test of time. For every Caslon or Garamond there are a hundred also-rans left along the road for reasons of taste, economics, or technology. The craving—and craze—for new faces has led to the revival of scores of old metal typefaces, but many deserving faces have been ignored. Here, I’d like to call attention to my top ten candidates for faces that ought to be available in digital form but aren’t. In a future column, I’ll train the same lens on display faces.

  • Features: Written by James Felici on March 6, 2013

    The last time I wrote about signage in the developing world (Go on a Type Safari, 4/1/10), I was roasted by some readers for failing to distinguish between setting type and hand lettering.

  • Features: Written by James Felici on February 6, 2013

    Certain keyboard shortcuts are universal across programs (and often platforms), and many of these have become second nature, just tripping off our fingers without a thought: Command/Ctrl-s to save, Command/Ctrl-c to copy, or Shift-Command-b (Mac) or Ctrl-b (Windows) to shift between bold and regular-weight faces. But while that automatic finger twitch produces predictable results for the first two of these, toggling into and out of bold can lead you to unexpected places.

  • Features: Written by James Felici on January 2, 2013

    It’s normally taken as an article of faith that you should use ligatures in text whenever you can. Like most articles of faith, though, this one too comes with an asterisk. In practice, the importance of ligatures is measured on a sliding scale from mandatory down to undesirable.