I’m slowly piecing together the evolution of the writing systems of Southeast Asia, especially those derived from Old Mon and Old Khmer, which have been used in Burma, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. I’m interested in how, when and why scripts branched off from one another, and what influenced the identity of each. Continue reading
This post is written in response to some of the questions people asked me about Thai typestyles last week at ATypI in Barcelona. Here I’m exploring looped and loopless styles by analysing current typographic practices in the Thai press. Continue reading
This blog post has grown in the writing, as various emails, conversations and Twitter threads seemed to be pointing in a similar direction. For reasons we will explore, Thai script is often seen as an example of a writing system prone to Latinisation. Its looped and loopless styles are easy to interpret as traditional and Latinised, but does that interpretation stand up to critical scrutiny? Continue reading
A selection of inscriptions from early times showing Pallava and its evolution into proto-Thai and proto-Burmese. Images in chronological order. More on Flickr: Burmese or Thai inscriptions.
At this year’s Granshan Conference in Munich, I facilitated a workshop about designing Thai typefaces. We started with an introduction to the alphabet and how the letters combine to produce syllables, then went onto a matching exercise to teach participant … Continue reading