The Machine Hand

Contemporary type design history of emulating hand manipulation of a brush.

Ryan Molloy
Professor
Eastern Michigan University

Single-line fonts—also known as engraving fonts, pen plotter fonts, and stick fonts—have a long history ranging from architectural hand drafting to use on pen plotters and engraving devices. As applications of digital fabrication—cnc milling, 3D printing, laser engraving, pen plotters, and craft cutters—have become more commonplace the demand for single line fonts has increased. Majority of the fonts produced and used today are outline fonts, enclosed and filled vector graphic forms. In contrast, a single-line font is composed solely of single vector lines (not enclosed). In applications of digital fabrication the use of single-fonts significantly reduces production time because machine paths are not duplicated.

Contemporary type design has long had a history of emulating the contrasting strokes created through hand manipulation of a brush. The increased demand from maker communities for single-line fonts has led to the development and commercialization of new single-line fonts or tools to convert outline fonts into single-line fonts. However, despite the traditions of type design and the movements of the machine allowing the potential to mimic traditional form of lettering most single-line fonts are designed only for a constant stroke weight. This presentation will showcase a number of personal typographic experiments and typefaces created in an attempt to find novel solutions and applications to the design of single-line fonts. From pen plotters, to engraving, to the creation of letterpress wood type, and drawing inspiration from calligraphy to graffiti the work seeks to ask how can we further reinsert the hand into digital writing.

Design Incubation Colloquium 7.1: Oakland University

A Virtual Conference October 17, 2020, 1PM EST.

Presentations will be published on the Design Incubation YouTube Channel after October 3, 2020. Virtual Conference will be held online on Saturday, October 17, 2020 at 1pm EST.

Colloquium 7.1: Oakland University (#DI2020oct) will be held online. Registration for this event below.

Hosted by Maria Smith Bohannon and the Dept of Art and Art History at Oakland University, MI. This event is open to all interested in Communication Design research.

Presentations

A Design Conversation of the Interaction between Iranian and American Visual Culture
Setareh Ghoreishi
Assistant Professor
Oakland University

Exploring Connections between Environment and Community Through Design
Danilo Bojic
Assistant Professor
Winona State University

The Machine Hand
Ryan Molloy
Professor
Eastern Michigan University

Let’s Stay Neighbors: A Case Study in Civic Engagement
Chad Reichert
Professor
College for Creative Studies, MI

Sustainable Design Thinking: Changing the Design Process
Maria Smith Bohannon
Assistant Professor
Oakland University, MI

Graphic Design Principles: A History- And Context-Based First-Year Design Textbook
Anita Giraldo
Associate Professor
New York City College of Technology, CUNY

Patricia Childers
Adjunct Professor
New York City College of Technology, CUNY

The Children of Loki: Pairing Norse Mythology With Contemporary Visuals to Create a Provocative Narrative
Jimmy Henderson
Graphic Designer

Jimmy Henderson | Design & Illustration

Core Values Matter: The Role of the People in Shaping Corporate Responsibility
Lilian Crum
Assistant Professor
Lawrence Technological University

Why Design Educators Should Embrace Collaborative (Group) Work in the Design Classroom 
Abby Guido
Assistant Professor
Tyler School of Art and Architecture

Tangible Type with 3D printing

The first phase of a research project to develop and find the place of the emerging technologies in typography

Taekyeom Lee
Assistant Professor
Illinois State University

Technology and design have been in a symbiotic relationship, and the demand for the typography with 3D printing has already arrived. Like the digital revolution with the introduction of personal computers generated radical changes in typography, the new digital fabrication techniques urge designers and educators to embrace the new possibilities. As 3D printing has become more refined, efficient, and accessible, what designers can do with the new printing technology? This project is the first phase of a research project to develop and find the place of the emerging technologies in typography.

Designers can use a variety of printing techniques to produce visual materials and to solve visual problems. 3D printing can change the notion of printed text and how we experience materialized type since the tangible type does not lie on the static surface or live on-screen as a mirrored image. 3D printed tangible type acquires characteristics such as dimension, structure, materiality, and even physical interactivity. For this project, various conventional and unconventional materials in 3D printing were used to explore both the challenges and potential for typography. 3D printed tangible type not only amplified visual but physical interactions. The tangible type provides engaging tactile experiences, which would be more intuitive, expressive, and memorable. It also became relatively challenging to ensure the legibility of the written text and write a long text. More investigations should be followed as the technology will get more refined. This project could be inspirational for both professional practices and educational settings, such as typography, graphic design, and digital fabrication courses. As the outcome provides three-dimensional experience and substance, a new application of this design could be used for spatial typography and developed for people with vision impairment.

This research was presented at the Design Incubation Colloquium 6.3: Fordham University on May 16, 2019.

Practicing Type in the Age of Screens

A panel discussion among design innovators about their design and use of type in today’s changing environment.

Saturday, November 9, 2019
2pm–4pm
Type Directors Club
347 W 36th St., #603
New York, NY 10018

Typeface design and the implementation of typography has never been more exciting. In many cases, type is presented on monitors, tiny and huge electronic visual displays, i.e., screens. In collaboration with the Type Directors Club, Design Incubation will moderate a panel discussion among design innovators about their design and use of type in today’s changing environment.

Moderators

Liz DeLuna
St John’s University

Dan Wong
New York City College of Technology, CUNY

Panelists

Jason Pamental
https://rwt.io/

Javier Viramontes
https://www.javierviramontes.com/
format.xyz

Nancy Campbell
https://www.mccandlissandcampbell.com

Ksenya Samarskaya
http://www.samarskaya.com/

Developing Design Curriculum Assessment Goals and Student Learning Outcomes; A Case Study: Typography

Walk through the process of project creation to meet learning outcomes, evaluation of success, and mapping outcomes to student learning.

Andrea Hempstead
Assistant Professor
Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi

No matter your design school pedagogy, the need for defined and executed assessment and student learning outcomes is important for institutional and programmatic accreditation. This can seem a daunting task for most educators, and particularly so for those teaching in creative disciplines. When academics hear “assessment” and “learning outcomes” they often become angry. This anger, is often fueled by fear that the “institution” is trying to control classrooms, or worse, justify teaching positions and approaches. Ultimately, these institutional measures have the best interests of the student at heart. Done correctly, assessment and defined student learning outcomes help to guide instructors to create and revise curriculum to meet student needs and are flexible enough to allow for unique classroom experiences.

Assessment models favor a tiered approach to learning. Typically, there are touch points throughout curriculum where student learning outcomes are introduced, reinforced and mastered. Ideally, outcomes are not addressed solely in one course, but built upon as the student learns and progresses through the program. Once developed and implemented, these learning outcomes can be assessed to evaluate where student learning could be improved, but also can reinforce successes and program strengths. Additionally, program assessments can serve as documentation to reinforce the need for program funding to improve areas of weakness. Assessment documents can serve as justification for improved facilities, software purchases or even faculty lines.

This case study walks through the process of project creation and implementation to meet course student learning outcomes, evaluation of student success regarding course outcomes, and mapping these outcomes to how program student learning outcomes are introduced, reinforced and mastered. Assessment of the project includes analyzing student course outcomes and progression of overall program student learning.

This research was presented at the Design Incubation Colloquium 6.1: Quinnipiac University on October 5, 2019.

Reading Color: Type in and on Color

A synthesized, inductive approach using Itten’s contrast of extension and Albers’s experimental color studies in application to the visual gestalt of typography.

Jeanne Criscola
Assistant Professor
Central Connecticut State University

Much has been theorized about the transformation of communication from cave paintings to written language and how humans employing materials and technologies impacted their evolution. In 1493, Johannes Gutenberg’s technologies marked a milestone for communication and its distribution with the mechanization of movable type printing. The transition from hot type that went obsolete in the 1950s, to cold type that met its demise around 1985 with desktop publishing, was short-lived. Now, digital typesetting technologies offering myriad configurations of size, font, and layout—in seemingly infinite spectrums of color—present limitless opportunities for the practice of communication design.

This fusion of type and color presents challenges for pedagogy and discourse in the fields of typography and color where they have historically been considered separately in books and in coursework. In typography books, examples typically use letterforms in varying degrees of sizes and contrast to demonstrate colors’ influence on legibility. In books on color theory, the properties of color are often demonstrated with pie-shaped diagrams, color wheels, grids, and in continuous bands. Each pedagogy falls short of modeling today’s communication technologies where typography and color are intrinsic, inseparable, and synergistic.

Methodologies that facilitate the study of typography and color in context and in situ would be welcome by educators and professionals alike. For educators, infusing color theory into the study of typography has advantages for curriculum and course development. For the design student, learning color theory with letterforms integrates their study and practice.

This paper sets out to initiate a synthesized, inductive approach using Johannes Itten’s contrast of extension and Joseph Albers’s experimental color studies in application to the visual gestalt of typography.

This research was presented at the Design Incubation Colloquium 6.1: Quinnipiac University on October 5, 2019.

Type Drives Culture Conference

Love Type More Than Ever!
Save on the Type Drives Culture Conference!
Tickets Now Reduced 20%

The theme of this year’s Type Drives Culture Conference is
Type: More ______ Than Ever. Our interactive theme prompts presenters and conference attendees to fill in the blank about the present and future of type.

Type is more global than ever, more accessible than ever, and more exciting than ever. This one-day conference brings together designers and thinkers to share their diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and opinions through provocative talks and panel discussions.

Rich Tu, the vice president of design for MTV, will serve as the master of ceremonies for an exciting day, featuring our keynote speaker type designer/educator and TDC Medalist Fiona Ross.

Other award-winning designers presenting during the day include
E Roon Kang, Nontsikelelo Mutiti, Wael Morcos, Natasha Jen, design reporter Anne Quito of Quartz, Yotam Hadar, and Ksenya Samarskaya.

Among the day’s highlights will be a live-taping of Debbie Millman’s influential podcast Design Matters, where she will interview Kris Holmes of Bigelow & Holmes.

We will also have a panel discussion with Dan Rhatigan of Adobe Fonts, Irin Kim of Google Fonts, and Charles Nix of Monotype moderated by Juliette Cezzar, and two other panels that you won’t want to miss, moderated by Jason Pamentel and Gloria Kondrup of the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography in Pasadena.

Tickets include a two-hour reception with the speakers.

Come help us fill in the blank on March 1st.

Group rates available via director@tdc.org

SVA Theater
333 West 23rd Street
New York, NY 10011
+Google Map

Arabic Lettering Workshop at the Type Directors Club

An exciting series of workshops about Arabic lettering is being offered at the Type Directors Club. This latest episode, participants will select important public signs from New York and will proceed to create the Arabic counterpart.

Kristyan Sarkis and Wael Morcos will be sharing their skills as type designers and graphic designers, teaching the main parameters that define the Arabic script and letterforms.

Body Type

Samantha Flora
Co-Founder and Designer
JAM Studios and Fat Kid Type Foundry

Centered around issues of identity, the body, womanhood, and how they interconnect with design in the context of body image and the body positivity movement, Body Type: An Analysis of Fat Identity and Fat Bias in Graphic Design, is an extensive body of research which connects type, design, and the body through humanistic tradition.

In addition to a brief overview of the research, presenter will discuss Body Type—a typeface based on her own bodily proportions, which seeks to interject the fat female form into an industry where fat bodies have been marginalized by practice. It is a story of radical self-acceptance that seeks to redefine what self-love means to the modern woman and how that change can be—and should be, shaped by design.

This research was presented at the Design Incubation Colloquium 5.1: DePaul University on October 27, 2018.

Breakfast and Letterpress Typography Workshop @HMCT

Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography at ArtCenter College of Design is hosting a workshop to welcome Design Incubation and typography design researchers to the West Coast.

We are excited to announce the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography at ArtCenter College of Design is generously hosting a workshop to welcome Design Incubation and typography design researchers to the West Coast during the 106th Annual CAA Conference in Los Angeles.

Saturday, February 24, 2018
10:30AM–1:30PM
Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography / Archetype Press 
South Raymond Avenue
Pasadena, California 91105

The Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography [HMCT] at ArtCenter College of Design was founded in 2015 in memory of Professor Leah Hoffmitz Milken, a well-known typographer, letterform designer and esteemed faculty member at ArtCenter. Archetype Press houses more than 2,500 cases of rare American and European foundry type, wood type, and ornaments.

Gloria Kondrup, Executive Director of Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography and Director of Archetype Press, will also be moderating a special program of typography research presentations during Affiliated Society Meeting: Design Incubation Special Program on Typography. For details visit the website announcement. All are welcome to attend these events. Please register in advance.