Week 7, Class 1

A word of warning–I am just getting over the stomach flu. If I leave the room in mid-sentence, just be patient. I am Purell-ing every chance I can, and I will not come within 5 feet of any of you if I can help it.


International Typography Reports

We are going to use lab time to work on these as I have gotten a few of these already and I have to say that you may want to rewrite them:

  • I will not accept any text simply copied and pasted into your report. Read what you fond, then recount it in your own words. Please know I have Google and a few other tools that spot copied text within seconds, not to mention I am a fairly smart cookie. Please know you will not fool me.
  • Form an opinion, care about what you have found!

What not to do:

  • The computer and type
  • Color and Legibility
  • Typographical problems affecting legibility
  • Distorting typography

Type Book: Legibility: Color Handout

  • Create a 1 page document
  • Creating a set of background boxes which will range from 100% to 10% of a specific color.  Explore what happens to type as it is set into a variations of backgrounds.
  • Follow the directions to complete the exercise.


  • Rework your reports on your typography system per my feedback, be ready to discuss in class tomorrow.
  • Finish your classwork.

The Life of a Typographer

Week 6, Class 2

We need to check in on our International Typography reports, then cover some more material for the Type Book.



  • The Pen Tool
  • Bringing in Images
  • Google searches and ethics


  • Importing images
  • Image boxes, shapes, possibilities

Text Paths!

  • Text on a path and spacing: here is the Type on a Pathway handout.
  • Vertical path
  • Type on a smooth curve
  • Type on a sharp curve
  • Type on a circular path

Vertical Paths


  1. Finish Type Book Exercises, make edits to old files. No need to turn in edits unless you need feedback, just make sure you are not working on all of your exercises the last week of the semster.
  2. Finish your report on your chosen typographical system. It needs to be published on your ePortfolio, so talk to me if you still need help with that. Some details to consider:
  • How did the writing system develop?’
  • What technologies came into play in the development of the letterforms/symbols?
  • Were there political implications?
  • Who was the letterform/symbol system developer(s)?

Remember, I will send you an email asap with all you are missing according to my records. I strongly suggest you go back and finish that stuff. It all adds up to help you learn the material and make you a typographer in your own right.

Signage Comparison from my Apartment Building

More Type on the Run

Week 6, Class 1

After class, I realized I had not copied the second part of the Alignment exercise. My bad, we will get to it today. Here are today’s files.

A Word about Type Book exercises

We really need to talk about the quality of work that I am seeing in the assignments. I am seeing a lot of people not really reading the directions, not using the template well, and generally not caring about putting forth your top quality effort. I will expect all of my edits to be made to your final versions. Remember that the Type Book is 20% of your final grade. Without it, you cannot make above a C. 

And for the love of pete, NAME YOUR FILES LIKE I ASK YOU TO. I cannot possibly track down all these odd files all over the place.


We need to fill in some gaps in the Type Book, so today will mostly be a work session. I will meet with each of you separately for some one on one.

Here are some videos I want to show you while we work:


  • Finish the classwork for tomorrow.
  • Finish your report on a system of typography from somewhere around the world. This report needs to be 3 paragraphs long AT LEAST and include examples in the form of images, videos, or both.


On the syllabus, I planned to give it the seventh week, but I want us to cover some more stuff before then. As it states in the syllabus, I can change things to meet the specific classes needs. Also, I will have a substitute coming in for the 27th and 28th, so I will have to give that teacher your tests to go over with you.

A moment in Type





Week 5, Class 2



  • Alignment
  • Analysis of which ones work best and under which circumstances.
  • Tracking
  • How it is measured
  • Its impact on meaning

Type Book: Alignment

Create a 1-page document. I will supply text to be positioned using all 5 main alignments. Here is the Type Book: Alignment handout.


Journal Research Project, Due March 14:

Pick a culture, either one from which your family derives or one you are interested in. Research the typography that that culture uses, find videos or samples, names of graphic designers or typographers, posters, ANYTHING you can find on that subject. Write at least 3 paragraphs in your journal on what you have found. I will show you how to link to files and such today. We will have a class discussion, showing what everybody turned in on the 14th.

Journal for next week:

  • Find examples of a lightface immediately placed after a bold face or vice versa
  • Regular and italics on the same paragraph.
  • Examples of the five different kinds of alignment discussed in class.

Week 5, Class 1


Today, we will start with our quiz, the first one of the semester. I tried ti trim it down to really ficus on what we actually covered in class.

Text ŸŸ

  • Review of some material: leading, history of typography
  • Width/Weight/Posture
  • Stress/Contrast/Serifs
  • Introduction to the main visual differences of type
  • Analysis of visual characteristics of a font based on weight, width and posture and on letter stress, contrast and serifs

Type Book: Variations
Create a 6 page document. Each page must show a sampling of 3 characters comparing variations of type within each category discussed in class. Here is the Type Book: Variations handout, in case you lose yours. Here is the Class Template.

One character in a light face, one character on a regular face, one character on a bold face


Finish Classwork: Please READ THE INSTRUCTIONS. I am getting a lot of assignments that are just inexcusably messy or off base. You need to care more about what you produce.

Journal (due tomorrow):

  • Find three instances of bad kerning, why do you consider these bad?
  • Find three examples of varied leading (tight, comfortable and loose). Are these appropriate to the layout? Does the leading add any meaning to the message?

More Type in the Wild

There is just so much to see… More type I noticed out in the world, served up hot for you!

Some great advice on getting a job

You may be a while away from needing this advice, but I found this so invigorating:

How to Get a Job at Google

I’ll sum it up very quickly. Grades are not helpful in choosing great candidates for Google (or any employer, if they are doing things the right way). What matters are these skills:

  1. General cognitive ability, or the ability to learn: not I.Q., as that does not measure an individual’s determination or grit or anything beyond a few specific skills. Intelligence is in fact NOT a fixed attribute. It is grown, cultivated, and maintained over time. Your brain literally changes on a molecular level when you stimulate it. No matter what your fifth grade teacher may have told you, you have an infinite capacity to change things and kick butt.
  2. Circumspect leadership: when the poo hits the fan, can you step up and lead? When you are not the right choice to lead, can you step down and be a team member without drama?
  3. Intellectual humility: Stay teachable and take responsibility for your continued, lifelong learning. Be ready to teach and learn with all of your teammates. Even the lowly intern!
  4. Ownership: Learn how you learn, develop metacognitive skills, make yourself a joyful and willing learning machine! When you make a mistake, own up and correct it immediately and openly.
  5. Expertise: This is literally the least important because it is in fact a byproduct of the first four and the least lasting. You have to constantly renew your expertise, so maintain beginner’s mind. No ego!

To quote:

“Your degree is not a proxy for your ability to do any job. The world only cares about — and pays off on — what you can do with what you know (and it doesn’t care how you learned it). And in an age when innovation is increasingly a group endeavor, it also cares about a lot of soft skills — leadership, humility, collaboration, adaptability and loving to learn and re-learn. This will be true no matter where you go to work.”