Hermann Zapf's name should ring a bell with anyone in the design or printing business. He has designed an impressive number of typefaces (fonts), well over 30 since 1941, and he's still going strong.

Zapf was born in Nürnberg (Nuremberg) in Germany in 1918. In 1934 he started a four year apprenticeship with a local printing company, Karl Ulrich & Co., where he worked as a retoucher. He quickly discovered his deep interest in calligraphy. In 1938, after finishing his apprenticeship he moved to Frankfurt and was hired by Paul Koch's workshop, where he studied printing, punchcutting and other related subjects. In 1949, in collaboration with his mentor, August Rosenberger, he published a collection of 25 calligraphic alphabets titled "Feder und Stichel" (meaning "Pen and Graver").

Some of the typefaces Hermann Zapf designed are: Gilgengart (1941), Palatino (1948), Michelangelo (1950), Sistina (1950), Aldus (1952-53), Melior (1952), Saphir (1952), Kompact (1952), Virtuosa (1952-53), Phidias (1953), Frederica (1953), Heraklit (1954), Optima (1958), originally named "Neu-Antiqua", Hunt Roman (1962), several different typefaces for Hallmark Cards (1967-72), Venture (1969), Medici (1969), Orion (1974), Marconi (1976), Comenius (1976), Zapf Book (1976), Zapf Dingbats (1977), Zapf International (1977), Edison (1978), Zapf Chancery (1979), Vario (1982), Aurelia (1983), Euler (1983), produced for the American Mathematical Society, using Metafont, Civilite (1984-), a script face, Zapf Renaissance (1984) and Zapfino Four (1998) for Linotype.

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