sábado, 17 de março de 2012

Are typewriters becoming a trend?

Are typewriters becoming a trend?

Everybody seems to be talking about them lately… Although I'm just a newbie, I don't remember having ever seen so much media exposure around this machines.

Famous people are surrendering to this amazing machines and along with them their capacity to influence the masses. Typewriters have aroused curiosity and the media is publishing articles about them and doing interviews to typewriters collectors and enthusiasts!

After taking a peek at oz.typewriter we all get to know that Tom Hanks is a collector and a typewriters enthusiast. He has even influenced the director Steven Spielberg as we can see in "Tintin" where typewriters are present from the generic to the movie it self, with Tintin display is collection in shelves and an amazing blue Royal in his desk…

According to Type, Shoot Straight, and Speak the Truth... I've found out Zooey Deschanel is also a typewriters enthusiast (as we all can see by her nails in her last public appearance) and managed to incorporate this wonderful machines in her current show "New Girl".

Surely all of you remember the CBS piece on the Typewriter Reinassance were some familiar faces of the typosphere stared!

The author of the blog Manual Entry took some of his typewriters to a local school and the reviews and the enthusiasm around this machines was fantastic. The kids loved this initiative.

Even Adwoa's pictures from Retro Tech Geneva were used by a known fashion designer as a pattern to a dress, what has thrown typewriters to the runways and the fashion world.

Maschinengeschrieben and the Swiss Typopshere were published in Tages-Anzeiger, one of the most important newspapers in Switzerland.

Somewhere around the globe someone is talking about typewriters, writing about typewriters… And their apparitions in cinema are getting more frequent.

In "J. Edgar" we can see a parade of typewriters from various eras. Although only by a fraction of a second but they are a constant presence.

And others are yet to come. In "On the Road" we can see Kerouac's Underwood portable and his famous continuous roll of paper.

And in "Hemingway & Gelhorn" there seem to be as many typewriters as famous faces. An image of Nicole Kidman seating in front of a typewriter with a bottle of boose it's something impressive.

All of this leads me to think that typewriters are again in vogue! We are witnessing a typewriter revival as has recently happened to other objects that have already been forgotten (Ray-Ban sun glasses and Casio watches are godd examples of it). Each time there is more fuss around typewriters, more curious people asking and searching for typewriter. A few months ago when I've started to collect this little machines most people reaction was of astonishment. They could not understand why I was interested in a machine that was outdated. Today when I share my passion about typewriters with someone the reaction is exactly the opposite. Most people say "That's cool! I'd love to have one…" (and that's how I went from geek to hipster).

Around here the offer is getting bigger in response to a higher demand. Each time there are more people (specially young people) interested in buying a typewriter. And the prices are shooting up either. I truly believe that we're witnessing the rebirth of this machines of yesteryears...

6 comentários:

  1. I think you're right. It's an undeniable trend, and it makes me happy -- I just hope it lasts, and typewriting becomes a durable subculture of the 21st century.

    I hadn't seen the "Hemingway and Gelhorn" preview. Very nice. EH types standing up at his Royal (I believe that's accurate), and Gelhorn seems to be using a Smith-Corona flattop portable.

  2. Thanks for this, Fernando. Yes, there is a "Typewriter Rennaisance" as the recent CBS news feature calls it. Certainly good news and I share Richard's hope that it becomes established as a subculture in our time. On the down side, prices for typewriters will go up further; we've been seeing it happen on etsy and ebay.

    I haven't seen the "Hemingway and Gelhorn" teaser either, glad you found it.

  3. Seems there is a trend in the positive direction. I hope it is not just a trend or fad, but a true revival where people do continue to use these fine machines. Sometimes it takes a while for people to realize new is not necessarily better. It took me about a week after getting my first PC and printer and giving my typewriter away. A few wasted envelops in a computer printer and I made a trip to the local flea market and got another typewriter. I never quit using a typewriter for many tasks including envelopes. Typewriters are much easier and faster.

    Thanks for the Hemmingway and Gelhorn clip. I have not seen it either.

  4. Yeah, we're trendy! Great list of typewriter appearances.

    1. PS: Translation of the Tages-Anzeiger article is scheduled for tomorrow's post.

  5. Down here, in Mexico, I'm still on the "geek" list because of my typewriter collection and odd typing habits, but things seem to be getting better, because there are more machines for sale in the local electronic auction sites than, say, a couple of years ago. Prices haven't climbed that much, though there are some people who want to strike it rich by selling granny's typewriter as if it were covered in gold instead of grime. But there's one in every group.

    As for movies and TV series featuring typewriters extensively, I remember two: the classic 1980s series called "Murder: She wrote", where a female novelist / half time detective solved crimes and mysteries in a small community and then used them for inspiration for her novels; and the much more recent "Stranger than Fiction", where a first-generation IBM Selectric takes a central role.