Patrick Griffin

Often known as ‘The Font Guy’, Patrick Griffin was fascinated by type from an early age. His father had been an Intertype operator and kept a hobby letterpress shop in a backyard shed in Toronto.

Patrick majored in film production design, with a minor in systems analysis, at Ryerson in the late 1980s. He studied type history and principles on his own and also became enchanted with the work of Rod McDonald, Jim Rimmer and Nick Shinn. Patrick made his first few fonts at the Ryerson print shop, where he worked afternoons. They were pixel fonts, made with primitive software packages called TyFont, BitFont and ElixiFont. The first font he made was a pixel version of a 12-point Prestige Elite, for school transcripts. After graduation Patrick worked in the film industry as a set and prop designer (1992–2006). He soon became a bit of a ‘typography guy’ in the industry, the person producers/directors called whenever they needed something relating to typography.

In the summer of 2004, Patrick and his wife Rebecca founded Canada Type, an independent digital lettering and font development studio based in Toronto. The company quickly grew and expanded on the strength of a retail font catalogue (www.canadatype.com) that includes exclusive classic revivals alongside popular and award-winning original typefaces. In 2012, Canada Type repatriated Jim Rim- mer’s type foundry and began issuing remastered and updated ver- sions of his faces. Canada Type’s specialty is bespoke and custom type- faces, with a client list that includes major film studios and broadcasters, global software and internet companies, multi-national financial corporations and government entities. Aside from his work at Canada Type, Patrick is an active partner with P22 Type Foundry, the classic letterpress shop and font foundry currently based in downtown Rochester, New York.

— Don McLeod

The Devil's Artisan would like to acknowledge the generous financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.

Patrick Griffin Magnify

Patrick Griffin

Credit: Rebecca Griffin