Biographical note

Close-up photo of John D. Berry in Ireland taken by Eileen Gunn

The short version:

I am an editor and a typographer, equally passionate about the meaning of words and the way they are presented. I have designed a lot of books, and I’ve written or edited several, including Language culture type: international type design in the age of Unicode (ATypI/Graphis, 2002), Contemporary newspaper design: shaping the news in the digital age (Mark Batty Publisher, 2004), and U&lc: influencing design & typography (Batty, 2005).

I have been president of ATypI (Association Typographique Internationale), and I was the final editor & publisher of U&lc (Upper & lower case). I am the founding director of the Scripta Typographic Institute. I was a program manager on the Fonts team at Microsoft, where I helped establish improved typographic standards for Windows and other Microsoft products. I have taught typography and design at Cornish College of the Arts. I’ve been writing, speaking, and consulting about typography for many years. I live in Seattle with the writer Eileen Gunn.

The long version:

Since I am equally passionate about the meaning of words and the way they’re presented, I usually describe myself as an editor & typographer. I’ve done a wide variety of things and had a wide variety of professional roles, but those two words, taken broadly, encompass most of them. When it comes to communica­tion, I consider the visual and the verbal to be two sides of the same coin.

I have been president of ATypI, where I encouraged the organization to expand its reach behind its Western European heartland. I was the final editor & publisher of U&lc (Upper & lower case), for which I developed, edited, and art-directed the magazine’s online companion, U&lc Online. As a program manager on the Fonts team at Microsoft, I helped establish higher typographic standards for Windows and other Microsoft products. I am the founding director of the Scripta Typographic Institute, which works for the development of new tools and higher standards for online publishing and onscreen reading.

As a book designer, I have designed or project-managed everything from computer books to poetry, from novels and essay collections to heavily visual art & design books. I am continually exploring how to integrate the design of printed books and the design of purely digital books into a single production process.

I have written and edited several books on typography and visual design, including the landmark volume Language culture type: international type design in the age of Unicode (ATypI/Graphis, 2002); Contemporary newspaper design: shaping the news in the digital age (Mark Batty Publisher, 2004); U&lc: influencing design & typography (Batty, 2005); and the small compendium of “typographic maxims” Hanging by a serif (John D. Berry Design, 2013, 2019).

I live in Seattle with the writer Eileen Gunn.