Typeface design education from Cooper Union
Introduction to Lettering

Introduction to Lettering
with Ken Barber

Lettering has become an increasingly marketable, if not essential, skill for artists working in design and advertising. The warmth and personality of hand-drawn letterforms can hardly be matched by off-the-shelf fonts. In this workshop, attendees will learn how to get the most out of lettering in a variety of applications.

Participants will begin by gaining a solid basis in the main principles that make for successful lettering. Referring to familiar typographic models and helpful specimens, students will then learn how to customize letterforms as they draw their own logos and wordmarks. Comprehensive slide presentations, informative sketching demonstrations, skill-building exercises, professional case studies, and valuable one-on-one critiques will provide further guidance as attendees acquire a practical foundation for implementing one-of-a-kind lettering in numerous design contexts.

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Required Materials

No.2 pencils (conventional or mechanical)pencil sharpener (if applicable)erasers (conventional and kneaded)pad of tracing paper (9″×12″ pad is recommended)pad of quadrille 4×4 grid/graph paper (9″×12″ pad, 4 squares per linear inch is recommended)12 inch rulerSharpie® Fine and Extra Fine markerswhite-out correction fluid penadhesive tape (for posting sketches)a computer or device to join the Zoom meeting and a reliable internet connectionZoom app recommended

Registration is now closed

Sat, April 13 – Sun, April 14, 2024

Number of sessions: 2

On campus at Cooper Union
New York, NY

About Ken Barber

Ken Barber
Ken Barber is a letterer, type designer, author, and instructor. He blames Don Martin comics, Santa Cruz skateboard graphics, and speed metal logos for his obsession with letterforms. For over 25 years, Ken has produced distinctive logos for global brands and created award-winning fonts. His work is part of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum and the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation. Ken is the type director and studio letterer at House Industries. Author of three books, his award-winning Lettering Manual was released in 2020.