“Cyrus Highsmith takes the lid off a paragraph of type and shows its inner workings. There is nothing you need to understand about using type that’s not in this book. Cyrus explains the correct terms for the typographic components of form and space that make a letter, a word, a line, a paragraph, and he does it with clear drawings, simple language, and a legible typeface for the text.”
— Matthew Carter
Inside Paragraphs is about what goes on inside a paragraph of printed text. The goal is to help students train their eyes to see text as typographers do. It begins with general explanations of how type works and how we read. Then the author steps through the different kinds of space within a paragraph. Finally, it puts everything together with a discussion about paragraph settings.
Typography began with paragraphs of printed text. Since then, it has evolved in all sorts of directions, sometimes leaving ink and paper behind entirely. But the printed paragraph is still a good starting point. Understanding what goes on inside provides a solid foundation on which to build.
And that’s what this book is meant to be – a foundation. Inside Paragraphs is the book Highsmith always wanted when he was a student in his first typography course.
Order the second edition from Princeton Architectural Press, out in fall 2020.