Andrea Herstowski

office hours by appointment

Class Syllabus


Google Drive


Visual representation of language through the creation of letterforms spans centuries and stands at the heart of human communication. In an effort to stand apart from the average usage of standard typefaces, many companies have begun to incorporate a completely new and unique font into their brand (creation of a watch: Bestoke Font). In addition to brands publication design has employed Bestoke Typefaces designed by Tobias Frere-Jones, David Burlow, Jonathan Hoefler, Bruno Maag, Paul Barnes, Christian Schwartz. Bestoke Typefaces have been designed for GQ, Sports Illustraited, NYT, The Guardian, AirBnb, the telephone book, some of your most favorite brands, and one the "coolest" was by Matthew Carter (12:25) for the Walker Arts Center in the 1994/5.  Gail Bichler: New York Times. 

How can you create a typeface to support and existing “brand” or match a mood, tone feeling of a cartoon or gameshow. Identify the brand, gameshow or cartoon. Collect images for inspiration. Create a word list of mood, tone, tone feelings. Include thinking about does it feel sharp, round, angled, exaggerated, tall, short, organic, constructed, mechanical, goofy, whimsical, scientific, ghostly, powerful, timid, lively, amusing, boisterous, confident... use those words to define the characteristics of your bestoke typeface. This is not a redo or a creation of the title font but rather design a font that matchs the brand and could be use in materials or collateral, ect. If you have a branding project that you would like to explore a typeface for it, now is the time.

Watch Paristyle : Tobias


Create a bespoke typeface that is based on a personality. Just a sample of what the typeface could look like. You are tasked with designing only some letters (that make words) that have the mood, tone, feeling of the cartoon, gameshow, mood, personality or can be another revivial that you want to test out quickly. Something new. Something different than you have made so far.

At least 8 - 12 letters of your choosing, but need to create words to show off the letters.
Can be all caps, or all lowercase, unicase...
Can be sans serif or serif... 
Include a few special characters, alternates, ligature and/or numbers (& ! ?)
PDF Presentation includes: words, letters, 3 characteristics/design attributes about the letters, mood/tone, process include all process...

You have had a bit of experience drawing in Construct your letters as perfectly as you can. Pay attention to proportion: it can be exaggerated but you have to have have reasons or at least be aware of your letter proportion. Consistent thicks and thins. Set your overshoot, anchors are round where they need to be, handles are horizontal or vertical (there are exceptions but try then decide that they can't be) use fit curve to correct handles.


Wednesday, March 20

Can you describe the personality?
Define traits so you can draw to mach them such as...
san serif, serif
tall, wide, thin, thick, strong contrast
round, square etc.

Identify letters you want to design. You only need 8 - 12 + some special characters or numbers (& ! ? ...) what words can you make with the 8- 12 letter pick your letters wisely. You can do more of course but trying to keep this project a bit less intense before we move onto the final.

Choose 2 -3 key letters. Sketch different ways to draw letters to match you the personality-- think font design / constructed letters, not hand-lettering. Think about all the ways you have sketched so far this semester and try each of those ways. You are trying to capture the mood tone feeling.

Monday, March 25

Present. Show and Tell 



Refine letters (do this before you move to glyphs or take the time in glyphs to refine and make variations) and using your system expand so you have at least 6 letters drawn and refined by hand. Remember some letters are easy to add to create words such as an h, n, i, l...

Once you have a refined idea put them into glyphs draw them in glyphs so we can crit next class. Bring your sketches and print the letters out as large as you can, make a couple of words.

Wednesday, March 27

Show and Tell


Refine letters, craft and spacing. Your letters should be well constructed.

Monday, April 1

Personality Due.
PDF presentation. Upload everything to the class google drive. Have a folder for your
Process/Sketches, Glyphs, PDF Presentation and please include the Project Overview.

Intro final project and promo piece