Type 1 Fall 2017

Hello Class! Please make sure to check the following links:

Assignments | Syllabus | Readings | Lectures | Questionnaire | Alerts

Week 4 HW

READ

Toolspace by Jan MIddendorp
http://letterror.com/writing/toolspace/

 

WATCH

3 Revival Case Studies:
The first three videos below show the process behind some notable type revivals. The reason for going back to the original source is because as technology changes, things get lost in translation. Studying the original material allows the designer to write a more complete history of how a particular typeface evolved and how it can improve. The teams behind each case study, not only seek to uncover the intentions behind the designs but also to expand on it and make it useful for the needs of contemporary typography.

These two definitions from John Downer's essay Call It What It Is help shed a light on the fact a revival is oftentimes also a homage, and good revivals aim to improve and not merely copy.

Revivals/Recuttings/Reclamations
Closely based on historical models (metal type, hand-cut punches, etc.) for commercial or noncommercial purposes, with the right amount of historic preservation and sensitivity to the virtues of the original being kept in focus-all with a solid grounding in type scholarship behind the effort, too.

Homages/Tributes/Paeans
Loosely based on historical styles and/or specific models, usually with admiration and respect for the obvious merits of the antecedents - but with more artistic freedom to deviate from the originals and to add personal touches; taking liberties normally not taken with straight revivals.
 

Introducing Johnston100 by Monotype
http://www.monotype.com/resources/case-studies/introducing-johnston100-the-language-of-london

 

Neue Kabel: reshaping a lost classic by Monotype
http://www.monotype.com/blog/font-stories/neue-kabel-reshaping-a-lost-classic/

 

Goudy & Syracuse: The Tale of a Typeface Found by Pentagram

 

Tobias Frere-Jones: Break Things Deliberately

 

CHECK OUT

In case you're missing letters to complete the assignment, please check out the online archived material. It's not high-res but it will give you an idea of what the missing letters look like.

Team Caslon
ATF Type Catalog 1912, p. 349.
https://archive.org/details/americanspecimen00amerrich

Team Bodoni
ATF Type Catalog 1934, p. 22.
https://archive.org/details/ATFBookOfAmericanTypes1934

 


REVIVAL FILES

Revival Project Source Files inside the Revival folder on the Shared Drive

Revival Project Template Files inside the Revival folder on the Shared Drive
 

 

DO

Download the either the Bodoni_Words_Template.ai or Caslon_Words_Template.ai.  and complete the missing letters from either Caslon or Bodoni using the source specimen and typeset:

Line 1: Regulated
Line 2: Bodoni
Line 3: Bold

or 

Line 1: Distinctly
Line 2: Caslon
Line 3: Heavy

Save the file as:

  • YourName_RegulatedBodoniBold.pdf
  • YourName_DistinctlyCaslonHeavy.pdf

Download the Bodoni_Words_Template.ai or Caslon_Words_Template.ai.  again and complete the missing letters that make up your full name. Typeset the following:

Line 1: Your First Name & Middle Name (if appiclable)
Line 2: Last Name
Line 3: Typography I

Save the file as:

  • YourName_NameTagBodoniBold.pdf
  • YourName_NameTagCaslonHeavy.pdf

Complete the Revival Worksheet Typography1Fall2017-Revival&Lettering-Template.indd located inside the Template Files in the Shared Drive and save it as:

  • YourName_BodoniBoldRevival&Lettering.pdf
  • YourName_CaslonHeavyRevival&Lettering.pdf

Write a brief paragraph answering these questions and post as a comment on the blog.

  1. By now, you've most likely developed feelings and opinions towards Caslon or Bodoni. What are they?
  2. How does it feel seeing you name set on your own digital letterforms? What would you change (weight, width, contrast, etc) to make it feel more personal? Why?
  3. What's your favorite feature (typographic detail) of Caslon or Bodoni? Why?
  4. What was the most difficult aspect of this revival assignment and how did you make it through?

Continue revising your lettering piece, last opportunity for feedback is on 10/6.
 

BRING NEXT CLASS 10/6

Email me and bring printed copies of:

  1. YourName_RegulatedBodoniBold.pdf or YourName_DistinctlyCaslonHeavy.pdf
  2. YourName_NameTagBodoniBold.pdf or YourName_NameTagCaslonHeavy.pdf
  3. YourName_BodoniBoldRevival&Lettering.pdf or YourName_CaslonHeavyBodoniBoldRevival&Lettering.pdf

Week 3 HW

READ

Call It What It Is by John Downer
http://www.emigre.com/Editorial.php?sect=2&id=1

Drawing for Interpolation by Erik van Blokland
http://new.superpolator.com/drawing-2/

 

WATCH

Matthew Carter: My Life in Typefaces

 

TYPEFACE MECHANICS

Typeface Mechanics: 001 by Tobias Frere-Jones
https://frerejones.com/blog/typeface-mechanics-001

Typeface Mechanics: 002 by Tobias Frere-Jones
https://frerejones.com/blog/typeface-mechanics-002

Type Terms Cheat Sheet
https://www.supremo.tv/typeterms/

Type Cheat Sheet
https://www.typewolf.com/cheatsheet

Font Men by Dress Code

 

DIGITIZING LETTERFORMS

The Bézier Game
http://bezier.method.ac/

Drawing for Interpolation
http://new.superpolator.com/drawing-2/

Hand Lettering: How to Vector Your Letterforms by Scott Biersack
https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/hand-lettering-how-to-vector-your-letterforms--cms-23248

Adobe Illustrator Pen Tool Tutorial for Logos and Typography by Matt Borchert

 

Modern Techniques for Digitizing Script Alphabets by James Edmonson

 

TYPE REVIVAL PROJECT

A type revival can mean many things as defined by John Downer's "Call It What It Is" essay for Emigre. For this assignment, our revival will be an homage to Caslon and Bodoni. I'll divide the class into two groups, team Caslon and Team Bodoni

Caslon Team
Alberto
Emma
Jasmine
Jia
Joel M
Xinying
Isabella


Bodoni Team
Jade
Joel C
Min
Natasha
Ren
Yasmin
Zoey

Caslon was designed by William Caslon in 1722. It was considered the first original English typeface and was used extensively throughout the British Empire in the early eighteen century. Benjamin Franklin used it extensively and in fact it was the font used to set both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution
https://www.fonts.com/font/linotype/bodoni/story

Bodoni was designed by Giambattisa Bodoni in 1798 and is generally considered a modern serif typeface. One of the earlier publications using Bodoni was Dante’s La Vita Nuova in 1925.
https://www.fonts.com/font/linotype/bodoni/story

The type revival project files are located inside the Revival folder in the shared drive:

The Source Files folder contains high-res scans of both Bodoni and Caslon for reference. The folder contains the following files:

  • Bodoni_Bold_150dpi_BookofAmericanTypes_ATF.jpg
  • Bodoni_Bold_300dpi_BookofAmericanTypes_ATF.jpg
  • Bodoni_Bold_600dpi_BookofAmericanTypes_ATF.jpg
  • Bodoni_Bold_1200dpi_BookofAmericanTypes_ATF.jpg
  • BodoniBold Regulated.jpg
  • Caslon_Heavy_150dpi_ATF1912.jpg
  • Caslon_Heavy_300dpi_ATF1912.jpg
  • Caslon_Heavy_600dpi_ATF1912.jpg
  • Caslon_Heavy_1200dpi_ATF1912.jpg
  • Caslon_Heavy_Distinctly.jpg

The Templates folder contains the illustrator files that you'll need to complete this assignment. I provided both EPS and AI illustrator files since EPS are more backwards compatible with older versions of Illustrator. Please download and use the EPS only if the Illustrator file won't open on your computer. The folder contains the following files:

  • BodoniBold Revival_Template.ai
  • Bodoni_Words_Template.ai
  • CaslonHeavy Revival_Template.ai
  • Caslon_Words_Template.ai
  • BodoniBold Revival_Template.eps
  • Bodoni_Words_Template.eps
  • CaslonHeavy Revival_Template.eps
  • Caslon_Words_Template.eps

 

DO

Download and complete either the BodoniBold Revival_Template.ai or CaslonHeavy Revival_Template.ai revival worksheet using the Prototyping technique shown in class. Make sure to check the Drawing for Interpolation reference sheet as well as this vectorizing tutorial. When you're done, export a pdf and email it to me named as:

  • YourName_BodoniBold.pdf
  • YourName_CaslonHeavy.pdf

Download and complete either the Bodoni_Words_Template.ai or Caslon_Words_Template.ai worksheet.  When you're done, export a pdf and email it to me named as:

  • YourName_BodoniWords.pdf
    For Bodoni, typeset the words delegated, leagued, and eagled
     
  • YourName_CaslonWords.pdf
    For Caslon, typeset the words stylistic, nittily, and instils.

Write a brief paragraph answering these questions and post as a comment on the blog.

  1. What was the easiest and hardest thing about this assignment? Talk about your process/experience of digitizing your lettering piece.
  2. What was the hardest and easiest letter (or part of a letter) to draw? Why?
  3. What do you think are your strengths and weaknesses?

Revise your NYC Lettering piece according to my comments. After that, please scan and upload it to the Lettering folder on Shared Drive with the following name:

  • YourName_NYC_Revision_001.jpg

 

BRING NEXT WEEK

  1. A printout of the completed BodoniBold Revival_Template.ai or CaslonHeavy Revival_Template.ai worksheet.
  2. A printout of the completed Bodoni_Words_Template.ai or Caslon_Words_Template.ai worksheet.
  3. Your revised NYC Lettering piece.

Week 2 HW

Get familiar with the class Shared Drive. For more information see the Alerts page.

PRINT

Lettering Handout

 

READ

Letter
Read the following sections: Superfamilies, Caps and Small Caps, Mixing Typefaces

Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton

 

WATCH

House Industries: Interview with Ken Barber

Erik van Blokland on Drawing


A quick recording of sketching letterforms from the inside out. Postpone drawing the actual outline until you have an idea where it is. Just drawing any line isn't going to make it the right one. Better to ignore drawing the contour altogether and focus on proportion, contrast, weight, the white shapes as well as the black shape. The pen keeps the same amplitude and direction. Thus it performs similar to a broad nib pen and the contrast follows easily. Modulating the amplitude (shown later on) simulates the expansion of the flexible nib pen. This is by no means intended as an example of great lettering. These particular letters would benefit from a dab of white paint and perhaps an iteration or two on tracing paper. But it shows how to get started. Similar to the sketching techniques shown by David Gates in Lettering for Reproduction.

DO

Submit your Garamond g's from Week 1 HW.  If you didn't finish coloring yours, have it colored in black (pencil or marker, just make it as dark as possible) for next class.

Revise—using the sketching and tracing techniques—and finish your "New York City" lettering pieces.

Write a brief paragraph that answers these 3 questions and post them as one comment before the beginning of next class:

  1. What font(s) did you use as reference for your drawing? why did you choose that one? What characteristics of the font attracted you to it?
  2. What was the most difficult and the easiest part of this exercise?
  3. If you could make a change to your NYC lettering piece, what would that change be?

Scan your New York City lettering piece and save it as 300dpi high quality jpegs inside the Lettering folder on the Shared Drive as:

  • YourName_NYC.jpg

 

BRING NEXT WEEK

  1. Your NYC lettering piece: the original on tracing paper and the printout where I can write notes.
  2. Post your writings on the comments section and be ready to read your paragraph at the beginning of next class.

If you missed the first class, check out the Alerts section.

Lectures

This is a list collecting all the video lecture assignments for this class.

House Industries: Interview with Ken Barber

House Industries has been producing their premier league retro design and their true love…Fonts! Fonts! Fonts! since 1993. House Industries’ lead letterer Ken Barber recently visited us in Berlin to give a workshop at our Gestalten Space, which explored the creative process of hand-lettering and the application of illustrative letterforms in contemporary graphic design. We took this chance to interview him on Gestalten.tv where he talks about the necessity of specialization and the fine lines between lettering, typography, and font design. We've sold out of their House monograph but are obviously huge fans and have a range of House Industries items at Gestalten Space, and available through our online shop, shop.gestalten.com. Watch our complete line-up of video interviews on gestalten.tv.

Erik van Blokland on Drawing

A quick recording of sketching letterforms from the inside out. Postpone drawing the actual outline until you have an idea where it is. Just drawing any line isn't going to make it the right one. Better to ignore drawing the contour altogether and focus on proportion, contrast, weight, the white shapes as well as the black shape. The pen keeps the same amplitude and direction. Thus it performs similar to a broad nib pen and the contrast follows easily. Modulating the amplitude (shown later on) simulates the expansion of the flexible nib pen. This is by no means intended as an example of great lettering. These particular letters would benefit from a dab of white paint and perhaps an iteration or two on tracing paper. But it shows how to get started. Similar to the sketching techniques shown by David Gates in Lettering for Reproduction.

Matthew Carter: My Life in Typefaces

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books - remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

Alerts

 

EDM CLUB MEETINGS Coming Soon (Stay tuned).

 

HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENTS

I expect everyone to complete each homework assignment on time. If you missed one or it's late, you will get a lower grade. But nothing is worse that not having your homework.

 

IF YOU MISSED THE FIRST WEEK

  1. Make sure I have your Garamond g' and wrote a comment on the blog Week1HW page.
  2. Make sure to scan your NameTag and upload it to the Name Tag folder on the Shared Drive.
  3. Make sure to complete the Helvetica a worksheet, scan and upload to the Helveticaa folder on the shared Drive
  4. Make sure to complete the class questionnaire.
     

Shared Drive

The shared Google Drive folder is for the class to upload final files only. Please, follow the link below and familiarize yourself with the folder structure. More links will be added later.

NameTag Folder
Helvetica a Folder
Garamond g Folder
Lettering Folder
Revival Folder

In order to upload or remove files, you must have a gmail account. If you don't currently have a gmail account, please make one even if it's only for this class. Click on the link below to create a gmail account. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.

Create a gmail account

 

Writings

Your writing homework assignment will be part of your Portfolio. Make sure you post your answers as comments on each homework assignment. In order to post a comment, make sure to be logged in to your gmail account first and don't forget to sign your name at the end.

Your comments should look something like this:

Typography is two-dimensional architecture, based on experience and imagination, and guided by rules and readability. And this is the purpose of typography: The arrangement of design elements within a given structure should allow the reader to easily focus on the message, without slowing down the speed of his reading.
—Hermann Zapf

 

Scanning

When you scan you drawings make sure you scan them at 300dpi either as grayscale or color, depending on the assignment. Please make sure to ask people in the labs for help if you need it.

Assignments

Please follow these links to access the homework assignments for each week.
The non-numeric links are for (S) Syllabus, (L) Lectures, (R) Readings, (?) Questionnaire, and (!) Alerts.

Week 1 HW

READ

What is Typography?

https://www.typotheque.com/articles/what_is_typography

Letter

Read the following sections: Anatomy, Size, Scale, Type Classification, and Type Families.

Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton

DO

Garamond g

  1. Draw a Garamond lowercase g from the printout on a tabloid size 11" × 17" piece of paper. The drawing must be as large as the piece of paper and colored black. Make the letterform as dark as possible. You can achieve this by using, pencils, markers, etc. 

    You must only draw from the small sample provided in class. Tracing is prohibited. Try to get it as close as you can to the original.
     
  2. After that, draw your own idealized version of a Garamond lowercase g. Change all the characteristics that you feel could be different or better than the original design on the printout. 
     
  3. Write a brief paragraph that answers these 3 questions and post it as a comment:

What things did you learn or notice about the Garamond g?

Was it difficult or easy to scale the drawing?  Why do think that is?

What changes did you make on your version of the g (list them out)? Why did you make those changes?

Pin both of your 11x17in drawings side by side (original on the left, revised drawing on the right) and be ready to read your paragraph/answers to the class.

Bring all materials from the syllabus, especially tracing paper, kneaded eraser, and pencils.

Class Questionnaire

Name *
Name
Cell phone *
Cell phone
What is your comfort level with the following software? (1 is low, 6 is best)
List your 3 favorite: