Typefight, a brawl on the baseline

Typefight_AAscenders up. Slab. Dip. Slap. Uppercase uppercut.

Occasionally a project comes along that I find is worthy of the adjective genius. I tend to use a lot of glowing adjectives but this one in particular, you’ll see me use very sparingly. It’s got to be clever and inspiring and make me wish I could participate, something akin to 10 Paces and Draw. When I saw Typefight, it fit the bill.


Born out of day-job boredom of Drew Roper and Ryan Paule, Typefight began in 2011 as creative exercise between the two. Before long Bryan Butler and Dan Brindley wanted in on the font fight club action.  After long hiatus, the site relaunched in October. Now, every week two contenders face off with a randomly assigned character. Designers from anywhere can “weigh-in” and compete. Site visitors can vote on which interpretation they like best.

Typefight also features the “Heavyweight” series in addition to their regular fight. Heavyweight challengers are working through the alphabet A to Z. Designers are Match-ups featured in the series are given a color palette to stick to because they are then  printed by Mama’s Sauce, a printing company I mentioned in my post on my favorite instagram accounts, and sold on Typefight’s website. The designers get a portion of the proceeds and the rest goes to Typefight for print costs and upkeep.


It’s so interesting to see the different contenders interpretations of the letters. Some take a solid, geometric strategy, others hand-letter. Some designer play with depth while other play with texture. While the pairings almost always look so nice together, each individual letter could stand along as it’s own print. My favorite match-up so far is when Darren Booth and Mary Kay McDevitt duked it out over the letter D. Booth  made his D in a surreal 3-D perspective and layered it with interesting patterns and textures while McDevitt made a goregous, fancy hand-lettered D with some simple patterning. In the end, Booth knocked McDevitt out 908 to 409.


So far Typefight has held 76 fights, 61 from before the hiatus, five since the relaunch and 10 from Roper and Paule’s match-ups. All are on display in Typefight’s gallery.


November 12, 2013 / By