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Online Workshops

Introduction to Modern Type Design

with Kel Troughton

Learn the basics of typeface design from anywhere in the world, and create your own original font in ten weeks!

  • Date
  • Time
  • What Letterform Archive Public Workshop
  • Where Online via Zoom
  • Duration 10 sessions, 3 hours each

During this 10-week online workshop, which meets on Wednesday evenings from January 31–April 10 (no class on February 21), you will create your own original typefaces as you gain an understanding of the methodologies and software used to produce high-quality digital type.

The primary goal of this workshop is to show you how to systematically think about type and help you successfully make a font. We will focus on techniques and best practices for designing and spacing type, introducing you to the conceptual foundations of type design, including proofing and testing work. You will work in the Glyphs App throughout the week and upload homework before each meeting for review. Throughout the workshop you will learn various lessons about type, history, sketching, and get weekly feedback on your type projects.

This workshop is suitable for designers just starting to think about type and for designers with some type design experience, hoping to hone their skills and processes. Some experience with drawing Bézier curves (in Adobe Illustrator, for instance) and with typography is recommended but not required. This is a great course for anyone interested in applying for a spot in Type West's Postgraduate Certificate Program in Type Design.

A free temporary license for Glyphs App will be made available to all participants. The class is capped at fifteen students to allow for one-on-one instruction.

Required Materials
  • Computer running Mac OS X 10.10 or higher (to run Glyphs)
  • Adobe InDesign and Photoshop
  • Canson XL Marker Paper
  • Pentel Jumbo Correction Pen (white-out)
  • Fine point and chisel tip markers for sketching (Sharpie or similar)
Diversity and Equity Scholarship

Diversity and Equity are important to all of us at Letterform Archive, and we are committed to increasing opportunities for underrepresented groups within the type and design communities.

We are offering one BIPOC/Equity scholarship seat in this workshop.

To apply for this scholarship, please complete and submit to us the short form linked here at least a week prior to the start of the workshop.

Kel Troughton

Kel Troughton is a freelance type designer and lettering artist who gets an equal amount of inspiration from mid-century advertising and Bay Area graffiti. He graduated from the Type@Cooper West program in 2018, was the teaching assistant for Type West in 2019, and worked at Monotype. Kel is one of the co-teachers in the year-long Type West at Letterform Archive certificate program.

You can find him in the East Bay drawing and photographing letters and you can find his typefaces Oaks and Gnar on Future Fonts. You can also follow him on Instagram and Twitter.

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