I’m a copy editor and Chinese–English translator based in Toronto, Canada. I also do graphic design.

Translation and graphic design have a lot in common. Both the translator and designer are communicating someone else’s idea so that others can understand the original message. Both the translator and designer are facilitators. Both are bridge builders.

Translation is, in a way, also deeply intertwined with typography, because despite what some may claim, punctuation and formatting are not semantically neutral. I am thus quite disappointed to discover that some in professional translator circles think that the translation must be formatted in exactly the same way as the original. CAT tools are making it difficult to deviate from the original formatting. Yet more often than we like, sticking to the original formatting can be so inappropriate that they are virtually outright punctuation errors. (If you are curious, you can head over to my other blog for some of my thoughts on Chinese typography, before I can manage to reorganize my thoughts here.)

I am a member of Editors Canada and belong to its Toronto branch, Editors Toronto. I also belong to IEEE PCS (Professional Communication Society), a US-based writing-and-editing association, and am a member of AIGA (American Institute for Graphic Arts), a US-based graphic design association.

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