Akira Kobayashi attended Musashino Art University in Tokyo (1979-83) and took evening classes in calligraphy at the London College of Printing (1989-90). He worked as a Type designer at Sha-Ken Co., Ltd., a manufacturer of phototypesetting machines, then joined Jiyu-Kobo, Ltd. where he designed and digitized the Japanese font Hiragino Mincho and its Latin companion Hiragino Roman. From there he went to work for TypeBank Co., Ltd. where he designed Latin alphabets to accompany all of TypeBank's Japanese digital fonts. From mid-1997 to 2001, Kobayashi worked as a freelance type designer. His type designs have won numerous international awards, including the Kyrillitsa'99 type competition, the New York Type Directors Club type design competitions of 1998, 1999, 2000, “Best of Category” and “Best of Show” at the U&lc type design competition in 1998, and First Prize in the text category in Linotype Library's Digital Type Design Contest in 2000. In addition to his Adobe® Original OpenType® family, Calcite Pro, he has designed many popular typefaces, including Skid Row™, ITC Woodland™, ITC Scarborough™, ITC Japanese Garden™, ITC Seven Treasures™, ITC Luna™, ITC Silvermoon™, FF Acanthus™, ITC Magnifico Daytime™, ITC Magnifico Nighttime™, and ITC Vineyard™. In 2001, he became Type Director at Linotype Library GmBH in Bad Homburg, Germany.