Axel Bertram’s Rabenau™ typeface family masterfully blends design sensibilities, combining formal beauty and grace with a touch of calligraphic joie de vivre. Bertram, a professional type designer for more than three decades, began designing Rabenau almost 20 years ago. This labor of love is his first commercially available typeface.
Initially, Bertram intended simply to create a typeface for his own use in book design and related projects. Over several years, as he used the typeface, Bertram continued to refine character shapes and proportions, subtly adjusting individual letters. He reconsidered the structure of every detail, from counters and stroke terminals to serifs, in the interest of making the design appealing for a wide range of applications.
“Many of my past projects play into the design,” observes Bertram, “from lettering for book covers to proprietary alphabets I’ve drawn for clients, and designs I’ve developed for educational settings. I’ve also looked to the work of early 19th century British printer and type designer, William Bulmer, for guidance.”
Well into the project, Bertram began working closely with calligrapher and type designer Andreas Frohloff, a collaboration that ultimately expanded Rabenau into a family of 16 designs – completing the transformation from a labor of love, to personal statement, to commercial product.
About the Designer
Bertram was born in Dresden in 1936, and studied at the Berlin Weissensee Academy of Fine and Applied Arts. In1960, he co-founded of the “Group4” art workshop, of which he remained a member until 1972. Bertram has worked as freelance graphic artist for publishers and cultural publicity media for over 45 years. He has also developed alphabets for magazines, television, branding – and even typewriters. However, none of these designs has been available commercially, as all of them are custom typefaces drawn for specific projects or corporate clients. In the mid 1990s, in addition to his on-going freelance projects, Bertram began work on a personal venture, which has culminated in the Rabenau typeface family.
Rabenau is a melding of influences, defying simple classification. The face is very much its own design. At first glance, its marked contrast in stroke weights and vertical stress suggests a heritage in neoclassical designs such as the Bodoni or Didot typefaces. Closer inspection, however, reveals baroque traits such as gently curved serif bracketing, rounded flag terminals and subtle tapering of upright strokes. The open form of the lowercase g loop even gives a nod to the transitional designs of John Baskerville. Bertram and Frohloff have given Rabenau a broad repertoire of weights and styles. The regular, book, semibold and bold weights each have italic complements. Four condensed designs, in addition to three very bold “poster” weights and a “shadow,” give the family remarkable versatility. Pronounced stroke contrast is maintained throughout the heavier weights, providing a distinctive sparkle, even at large sizes. Rabenau’s large x-height, bracketed serifs and ample proportions also ensure exceptional performance at small sizes.
The compete Rabenau family is available as a suite of OpenType® Pro fonts. These fonts, in addition to providing for the automatic insertion of ligatures, small caps and old style figures, also offer an extended character set supporting most Central European and many Eastern European languages.
Licenses for desktop fonts
A typical desktop font EULA will allow you to install the font on your computer for use with authoring tools including word processors, design tools and other applications that permit font selection. Fonts can also be used for creation of print documents, static images (JPEG, TIFF, PNG) and logos. The cost of a desktop font license is determined by the number of workstations on which the font is to be used.View the desktop EULA for this family
Licenses for Fonts.com Web Fonts subscriptions
The Fonts.com Web Fonts license provides access to a selection of fonts for use on websites for use with CSS@font-face. Font delivery from our global network is available through all subscriptions – even our free plan. Some plans include the option to self-host, access to desktop fonts, and use of our FontExplorer X font manager and Typecast design application. The price of a plan is determined by its pageview allowance and other features included.View the Fonts.com Web Fonts subscription license agreement
Licenses for mobile apps
A mobile app license permits the embedding of the font into the iOS, Android or Windows RT mobile platforms. Licenses are platform-specific meaning a separate license is required for each platform the font is embedded into. Licenses remain valid for the total operating life of the app and a new license is not required to cover free updates to the app.Learn more about licenses for mobile apps
Licenses for electronic publications (eBooks)
An electronic publication license can be used for the embedding of fonts into electronic documents including e-books, e-magazines and e-newspapers. A license covers only a single title but is valid for the full operating life of that title. Every issue of an e-magazine, e-newspaper or other form of e-periodical is considered a separate, new publication. Format variations do not count as separate publications. If a publication is updated and distributed to existing users, a new license is not required. However, updated versions issued to new customers are defined as new publications and require a separate license.Learn more about licenses for eBooks
Server licenses authorize the installation of a font on a server that is accessed by remote users or website visitors. These licenses are commonly used by Web-based businesses providing goods that are personalized by its users such as business cards, images with captions and personalized merchandise. Users are not allowed to download the font file and the font may not be used outside the server environment. The font may not be employed for a software as a service (SaaS) application in which the service is the actual product and not the means of providing the product. Server licenses cover a set number of CPU cores on production servers (development servers are not counted) on which the font is installed. The license is valid for 1 year.Learn more about server licenses