And there, staring back at me on page 56, was something that looked decidedly familiar. A poster I’d worked on with the great Derek Birdsall back in 2004. You could have knocked me down with a feather (shaped like a letter f, perhaps). Our effort was based on the letter i, and featured in a exhibition at the British Library organised by 26. Originally, it was printed on a reflective surface, so that people would see their faces in the poster as they read the text, picking up of the idea of I as shorthand for identity.
Here’s what some of the text in ‘Alphabets’ says about the poster: “Birdsall is an influential book designer who, therefore, works closely with letters in his day-to-day work. Davies, a writer, has contributed works of fiction and non-fiction to a variety of publications, and his humorous interpretation of the letter’s history is characteristic of his work. The letter is given a pompous voice and lists its many uses in language and technology, drawing attention to its strong aesthetics, which make it suited to graphic art.”