Master Class in Master Lettering

Tim Girvin, a master letterer and typeface designer, is offering a type class, Future Type, designed to teach letter mastery. It will take place this Saturday, November 10,  from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Everett Community College, in Everett, Washington.

I wanted to know more about Future Type, so I reached out to Girvin.

What are you going to teach?

The gallery, the talk, the workshop is examining the “type of you”—your type, for now, the future. And how to bring that out, explore one’s personal sense of type, design, personality and illustrating that. There’s a bigger picture, as well, which would be about the art of type design—I have teams that will be with me, supporting learning the theory and principles of type design, in building customized alphabets.

What is the takeaway from the class?

My thinking, to my own experience, is about the understanding of language and the “reading of it”—how people see, understand, and experience letterforms. What’s the emotional takeaway? When you think about who you are, what you stand for, drawing and creating the “type of you” becomes a metaphor for your life.

In my classes on lettering, calligraphy, and the drawing of type, I teach foundations, and then I teach interpretation, seeing, learning, exploring, and gathering. So, in a manner, the key takeaways would be: exploring the work and history of Tim Girvin’s world of type thinking—the art and design of the letterform and the illustration of ideas. In examining yourself, as an experienced designer, a student, a guest, how do you build an alphabet, a series of strokes and movements that evince your sense of who you are? How do you use that thinking, those skills, to create the evidence of other solutions? It will also be about building vocabulary, learning to study typographic solutions—even simple ones, primitive executions—to gather insights on interpretations.

What is the meaning of “Future Type?”

It is the direction the thinking on type design is going: What will be the type of the future, and would your place be in it? What type are you—then, now, the future?

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