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4 Sessions
Program ($900 USD)
School of Visual Arts
Visual Arts, Design
Skill Level
Video Transcripts
Typography, Typesetting, Graphic Design, Digital Alphabet
Course Description

Making Typeface Families includes drawing a complete alphabet start to finish, then building on to add bold, italics, small caps, glyphs, and other Open Type features including language support. Topics will include researching and sourcing references, translating concepts from rough pencil sketches to digitized finishes, and establishing cohesiveness in a small trial range of selected characters. Versions and variations on each letter will be explored in a detailed study of each component, and students will establish how these parts need to come together in a logical way to form a set of related letters and eventually, an entire typeface.


This course is in scheduled mode and starts Jan 23, 2018. Learn more about scheduled courses here.

Session 1: Picking a Purpose and Getting Started
In this session we’ll talk about how we’re going to pick a direction for a new typeface, and check out an overview of the software we’re going to use to make it.
Session 2: Drawing Control Characters
Last time we picked a text document to design a new text face for, did some sketching on paper for it, and got a quick and dirty intro to font editing software. This session we’re going to do the first twelve letters of our first typeface.
Session 3: Completing the Alphabet, Numbers, and Punctuation
Last time we drew our control characters and expanded on them. This session we’re doing ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING ELSE in the typeface. That includes the rest of the alphabet (uppercase and lowercase), the numbers, and some standard punctuation.
Session 4: How to Make an Italic and a Bold
In this session we’ll identify what makes up the structures of an italic and a bold, and I’ll walk you through how to draw one of each of your own to accompany your textface.
Whenever you complete a course as a premium member, you can earn a verified Certificate of Accomplishment .

This course is also part of the Program: The Complete Typographer. Earn a verified Specialist Certificate for successfully completing a Program.

These certificates are proof that you completed an online course on our platform and can easily be shared with its unique link.

Credit Elligible Program
This course is one of 5 courses in the The Complete Typographer Program and is offered for credits from School of Visual Arts.

Earn a verified Specialist Certificate after successfully completing a Program. And whenever you complete a course as a Premium member, you earn a verified Certificate of Accomplishment . These certificates are proof that you completed an online course on our platform and can easily be shared with its unique link.

Instructors & Guests
What You Need to Take This Course
  • Supplies:
    • Pens/Pencils
    • Drawing Paper
    • Tracing Paper
  • Software:
    • UFO-based font editing software such as RoboFont (used in this course) or Glyphs
    • Adobe Creative Suite
  • A note about the font editing software for this course: Both RoboFont and Glyphs have a one month (per machine) trial download that we encourage you to take advantage of for this course. However, when this course initially launches it will run for two months, longer than either font editor's trial period. With this in mind, we can suggest several courses of action:
    • You might consider working with RoboFont for one month and then Glyphs for another, to try out both pieces of software. Both work with the same .ufo files.
    • Both packages are relatively expensive (approximately $290 for Glyphs & $470 for Robofont); however, if you try Glyphs and enjoy working with it, you might consider Glyphs Mini, a limited and less expensive ($60) version of Glyphs that is more than adequate for this course.
    • Finally, as mentioned above, the trail downloads for both font editors are per machine.
Additional Information

Please note: Taking part in a Kadenze course as a Premium Member does not affirm that the learner has been enrolled or accepted for enrollment by School of Visual Arts.

If a student signs up for the Complete Typographer program, it is recommended that these courses are taken sequentially.

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