Sunday, September 30, 2012

Hand Lettering


Handwritten: Expressive Lettering in the Digital Age



I think the subheading of the top book really explains it. Our culture has developed a fondness for hand lettering again. I even see exquisite hand lettering on chalk boards in coffee shops. It's become part of hip business's identity.  It is independent, expressive and full of character, like we all secretly want to be. My students love these books. The second book has an unfortunate title for high school, but has an inspiring variety of hand lettered type faces.

I do hand lettering projects with my traditional media class, but you could also scan student hand lettering to a final document for a digital class.  This is also yet another connection to the popular nostalgia of the late 60s and early 70s when hand lettered posters were everywhere. Do I age myself if I tell you I still remember how cool doing my name in bubble lettering was?

So, last week I put up my hand lettering bulletin board and one student said, "Hand lettering. My favorite project!" So, then I realized I had to not just do it in Art 1, but in Art 2 as well.  

There are so many concepts to tie hand lettering to. I've done character education: design a poster with hand lettering with a quote about compassion; social commentary: What do you want to tell society? Say it in a hand lettered poster. Another I will do soon is hand lettering inside a shape.

Another good resource to inspire them is the dafont.com website. Some of the fonts are first hand lettered. Remember that when you click on the name of the font, you usually can see the complete alphabet.

Caution: One of my senior students used all her amazing hand lettering skills to do a poster for the Art Club. One of the administrators saw it and then insisted that she do a very large banner for an administrative retreat...which took her a whole month to finish.  So, beware, this could lead to a side business.

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