Type Design from Found Lettering
|Institution:||University of Washington|
|Filed Under:||Collaboration, Form-making, Four-year Program, Poster, Process|
In groups of four or five, students develop a typeface based on an typographic image. The prompt can be any found lettering that is not already an existing typeface—for example, a hand-painted sign, package, poster, logotype, etc. This project was originally conceived and demonstrated to me by the type designer Jean François Porchez.
From this activity, students will learn: —How to create a set of abstract symbols (letters/glyphs) balanced between unity + variety.
—The limits of letter manipulation (this is the basis for future logotype/logo design work)
A Functioning Font File
Open Type format preferred.
One Type Design Poster for each Typeface Group
A vertical or horizontal type specimen poster (16x24") that communicates the origin, design and personality of the typeface.
Type Process Diagrams
Each student submits three diagrams that demonstrate the development of glyphs that they were responsible for designing.
These diagrams should explain how and why certain design variations were considered, revised, adopted and/or rejected.
Designing Type by Karen Cheng
(I discuss the book in this podcast).
How to Create Typefaces: From Sketch to Screen by Cristóbal Henestrosa, Laura Meseguer, and José Scaglione
Because this is a short project, I find it more efficient to gather a group of specific type images for the student groups to select from (as opposed to using a week for the students to research/find a type image themselves). I try to have a wide variety of prompts (serif, sans serif, semi-serif, display, etc.) so that each group has an unique design challenge. I talk a bit more about teaching type design on this 15-minute You Tube video: https://youtu.be/RcI7GIDqOQY?t=31905