Interview Book. If you want to make changes to your chapter, you may reprint your chapter and either saddle stitch staple it or binder clip it. You may find it helpful to show your chapter outside the book in the future, too.
Pictures of Type book
Type specimen project
Make a post for each of the following and assign to the appropriate category.
Upload a 1600pixel (or higher) wide jpg or png of your driver’s license. Insert the “large” image in a post titled “Driver’s License Final” Check the category “Driver License Final” in the categories panel.
Upload your pdf to a post. Title your post “Interview with [insert name] by [your name]. Check the category “Interview Book Documentation” in the categories panel.
Pictures of Type Book
Take as many photographs of your book as are needed. Show us the object in scale, the front cover, any introductory matter and a few spreads. You may choose to paste your introductory copy below the photographs in your post. Title your post with the title of the book. Check the category “Pictures of Type Documentation” in the categories panel.
Type Specimen Project
Take as many photographs of your specimen as are needed. Many of you might find it easiest to photograph the complete project. Consider including some details so we see the interesting moments within the project. That could be wording, typesetting, form, binding, etc. Title your post with the title of your project (“Doko Gift Wrap”, “Stag Specimen Booklet”, etc.). Check the category “Type Specimen Documentation” in the categories panel.
Nice work, everyone. And thank you to Benjamin Shaykin and Julie Fry for being guest critics.
Print 9 copies of your interview on the text paper provided by John (to be left on Jerel’s desk).
Bleed of 1/4″ with crop marks and page info.
Front and back, same as you’ve been doing it
Centered on 8.5×11 in portrait mode
Printed at 100%
Printed on laser printer or a digital press
Trim 11×17 into 8.5″x11″. Print as above.
Backs are blank
Print 9 copies of cover
Covers on paper provided by Erin.
Bleed of 1/4″ with crop marks and page info.
Create a book using photographs from our Pictures of Type online database. Choose whatever pictures you want — whether they are yours or not. All decisions are yours: the size, the photo selection, the order of the photographs, how much caption text should appear.
My intention is that the end book will serve as a reference and forces you to look at the photographs with an editing eye.
You may decide to make your final copy with Blurb or LuLu or similar, but be prepared to show a working model of your book at the final review — one week after the last class.
More information will be added to this post in the coming weeks.
Similar in spirit to the distortions assignment last week, I want you to experiment with altering letterforms by adding or removing parts of the letter. You may do this in the computer or off.
Use the letters RISD.
Unlike last week, we will discuss how the end piece alters the meaning of the letters.
Here are some examples of what you can do:
October (Summer 1979), 9: 50-64.
Post from MVA about their typographic foundations course. Captures the spirit of Oct. 31 class and Nov. 7 class (if not the rest of life)
Create a front and back cover (with 1/2″ spine) for our book “Eight Interviews … Mostly About Type”. Concentrate this week on an “off-the-computer” typographic illustration. The illustration should follow the loose process of class today. Your cover may have flaps or be a soft cover only covering the front cover, back cover and spine.
Work in class today to create a set of typographic “distortions”. Begin with the printouts of single letters provided to you. Make your own printouts if you like, but work with your typeface.
The goal of this exercise is to see how far you can push an existing letter in order to give it new shape and meaning. Here, you depart from the “correct” drawing of a letter in order to make something new and unexpected. In some cases your goal may be to retain legibility of the letterform in some way, but your ultimate goal is form.
Use whatever techniques you can to depart from the original shape. Consider simple manual maneuvers like removing parts of the letter with an x-acto knife or adding to the letterform with ink. Also, try using the photocopier or a camera to create optical distortions. Go a step further and create dimensional structures that can be photographed or viewed as tabletop sculpture.
Be playful. Explore. Construct and deconstruct. Get loose.
We will gather at the end of class to see how the works will be interpreted. We’ll be looking at physical results. If you’re working with a digital camera, then print your finished pieces on 8.5×11 when finished.
I think we discussed the project thoroughly yesterday. It’s not import to me that the site has thousands of images — better to have a few hundred that are great. To get those few hundred, you have to always be looking and shooting a bit more than you’ll need. For next week, I want you to have 50 images uploaded. Your final deliverable will be between 100-125 accepted images. After next week, I’ll start changing items from public to private that don’t meet standards.
Choose one design from each list and to update it for class next week. In some cases, you’ll want to make bigger changes, in others, more detail-oriented changes.
Consider these factors:
Bring in your interview printed on the front and the back of single sheets, trimmed and held together with binder clips. Print on paper other than standard laser paper. Something that makes sense for your section. It’s fine if you start on a spread or on the recto. If you didn’t get enough feedback in class, come to Office Hours. Info at bottom of syllabus.
As defined by Ellen Lupton, typographic hierarchy “expresses the organization of content, emphasizing some elements and subordinating others.” Hierarchy as defined more generally is an ordered arrangement. Typographic hierarchy does not correlate to size, but to visible prominence. In other words, what the viewer sees first, and leaves remembering. Formal choices like color, weight, contrast, position and repetitiveness are all factors in making visible what’s important.
Critical when designing larger works, hierarchy is also important in smaller works. This exercise asks you to list in order of importance the elements of something very small — the Rhode Island driver’s license. A license should have clear hierarchy, but the current R.I. driver’s license is a fine example of a design lacking hierarchy.
Your first task is to make three separate lists, prioritizing different information for each list. For example, one list may prioritize the name of the individual, another the state, another the date of birth. Identify all unique bits of information on the license and order them. Currently, the Rhode Island license prioritizes the license number. If you find value in this choice, then one of your lists should place that at top.
Create two designs for each list. One should be limited to two fonts (two sizes or two weights) and one spot color. The second design may use any combination of size and color. Use your Village typeface only. Design the front only. You may suggest that certain elements be moved to the back.
Printouts due next week. Also post the six to the website under Assignment 4 with your three lists.
Printable area of license is 3 1/8″ x 1 7/8″ with 1/8″ border all around.
I have brought eight examples of recently published books for you to study. I am asking you to spend part of today’s class scrutinizing a single book in order to discover its grid. How many different grids exist and how do they interrelate? How do those grids connect to form a cohesive book design.
Note page size(s), text block size(s), running heads, folios, and other spatially relevant matter. Do pictures follow the same grid as text? What reasons might the designer have had for arriving at these choices?
Make measurements of all the grid-matter on a spread with a Schaedler Ruler (or similar). Make all the necessary notes and recordings in class today. For next week, construct a single diagram that shows all the systems either actual size and overlayed, or as thumbnails tiled on a larger sheet — whichever is most appropriate or helpful for the class to understand. You are reconstructing what the InDesign guides and edges must have looked like in the designer’s file. Use different colors for different types of content if that is helpful. Consider which boxes are filled and which are only stroked.
You will post your work as a pdf or image to the website under Assignment 3. There is no need to print the document unless it is helpful for you in the design process.
The books I have chosen should be in the library if you need to review any of your measurements after class.
You may also choose another book (from the start or after class) if there is one that interests you more.
A website that lets you kern onscreen. The instructions on the site are as follows: “Your mission is simple: achieve pleasant and readable text by distributing the space between letters. Typographers call this activity kerning. Your solution will be compared to typographer’s solution, and you will be given a score depending on how close you nailed it. Good luck!”
The website Wikipedia has a “random article” button on the left. Click it. Provided the result is not extremely long or extremely short, copy the text out of the page and typeset it using your typeface on 8.5″ wide by however long.
You may take the organization and aesthetics of it as far as you want, but the main goal is clarity. You are not replicating their format, but using their hierarchy. It is also another excuse to have you work in inDesign. Consider using tabs, paragraph styles, character styles and other parts of inDesign that you have not yet had a chance to use.
Tile your printouts to make a long verticle page or print on a plotter. Start this in class and let’s look at it next week.
Design your interview at the trim size you feel to be most appropriate. Start your interview on the right-hand page (recto) and finish on the left-hand page (verso). You decide the number of spreads that the interview should require. Consider images, pull-quotes, page numbers, folios and other book matter. You are looking to create an engaging format for reading and comprehension.
Ideally your book model and your trimmed layouts will match. Note we have not covered grids/macrotypography in class, but your readings cover this for next week. Your readings, and your understanding of subject matter, will be your guide as to how you might place your items on the page. We will look at your layouts and work with book grids next week explicitly. You will have a week to adjust your layouts to fit the final page size.
Pay attention to line-breaks and rags. I expect the text to be typeset well. Bringhurst is a good resource for how hyphenations and spacing should work.
Existing books that deal with similar content or are of the same length are great places to find inspiration. Chop down other books or large magazines if you don’t find existing books. Think creatively and openly, but realistically. Bring in any comparables to look at next week.
In addition to comparables, create your own book model to communicate the exact size (or proportion) that you feel you’re going for. Your book models may use blank paper or they may include scrap paper or printouts from the recycle bin. If you’re interested in printing in signatures (as most commercial books are printed), you may not need to fold and sew for this week. Glue binding the block is sufficient for now. Note, the purpose of creating a book model is to communicate your idea of how the book should feel. If paper weight or color is important, then track down what you’re looking for now.
Note there are digital printing options at standard sizes and these may prove themselves a good option, but let’s see where your research and interests lead us first.
Split up into two groups and pass out a copy of your typeset interview to your group members. Read them silently for content. You may find it helpful to make notes on the printout to remind you of parts you want to bring up in discussion. It may be helpful to hear from the interviewer first to know who the interview is with and what was the context of the interview.
The small groups discussion should draw out themes, tone and other ways to describe the interviews collectively. After the discussion, take the time to mark up the printout for typographic and grammatical errors.
We’ll meet as a class to summarize and list out some themes to list below.
Thank you, Colin for a great letterpress workshop.
Visit to the D.B. Updike Collection with Special Collections librarian Jordan Goffin to look and touch historical typographic artifacts.
As part of the pictures of type project, upload five photographs of poorly kerned type with the tag “bad-kerning”. The purpose here is to have you focus your attention on the spacing between letters more than the shapes of the letters themselves. Look for either extremely clear and obvious examples approaching on comedic, or subtle problems in kerning that show your developing eye. Crop in on just what you need to make your point.
On September 26 we will be going to the Providence Public Library’s Special Collections room. PPL is home to the D.B. Updike printing collection, bequethed to the Library in the 1940s. There we will see an overview of printing history back to the 15th Century until the end of the collection.
Login using the username and password discussed in class. Change your password to something you’ll remember. Upload five images to the Omeka database at http://picturesoftype.com/admin. Our primary focus on week one is getting good meta data and tagging.
Please add more in the comments or directly attached to the photographs.
Take a good look at your assigned typeface — including the online marketing collateral, the lengthy type specimen sheet provided, and the typeface files themselves.
Zoom into the letterforms that make up your typeface. Find interesting positive and negative spaces, shapes, curves and angles. It’s important that we don’t read the letter. This assignment is about understanding form and counterform. Use only one glyph per sheet. Rotating is fine, but may not be necessary given the wealth of characters in the typeface.
Create 9 8×8″ finished drawings using either pen and ink or a photocopier. If working digitally (with the tyepface and InDesign), make 50 and print your favorite 9. Work iteratively. You’re looking to create engaging form.
Give an oral presentation on what you learned about the typeface to pair with your croppings. Describe your typeface in whatever terms seem appropriate: “whimsical”, “heavy”, “stern”, “Don Draper-like”. What classification system does the typeface fall under? What type of applications are well suited for this typeface? Is it already associated with a brand or cultural sector? What did you learn by observing the typeface (in the computer) and by creating the compositions?
You will need to post your script on this site after week 2 (to incorporate discussion) with your croppings.
Using the printouts provided (of the pdfs below), draw the letterforms that appear on the top of the sheet in the space provided in the white area at the bottom. Pay attention to the placement of the letterform relative to the baseline. Note differences in shapes depending on when they were designed.
If you are feeling comfortable with drawing the letter-sized glyphs, try enlarging your drawings on blank, larger sheets.
This course carries an important structural twist. Village Type Foundry has donated a type family per student to use for this semester and only in this class. The larger issues of typography will be accessed and learnt through prolonged exposure and practice with one type family. Each family provides its own historical and suggestive meanings, while being designed for present-day application. The typeface will be the focus of many of your assignments during the semester.
This course concerns itself with typography as described in two ways: a purposeful craft that branched off from printing and a formal element within an artistic composition.
With a more than 550-year history, typesetting — as found in books, posters, ephemera and on screen — forms the foundation of the course. Typesetting is the selection and placement of letterforms to transfer meaning. However prominent or intentional, the typography is part of the meaning. The job of the typographer is to create a nuanced, personalized and appro
This course carries an important structural twist. Each student will work with a single contemporary typeface generously donated by Village Type Foundry. Students will understand the broader typographic issues through prolonged exposure and practice using one type family. Each typeface provides its own historical and suggestive meanings, while being designed for present-day application. The typeface will be the focus of many of your assignments during the semester.
PBS Type short created for the layperson, but entertaining, diverse and informative. From PBS Arts.