Getting to grips with specification: hands-on with the collections

On the first day of term, Paul Luna and Jeanne-Louise Moys kicked off the part 2 book design project with an inspiring workshop using hand-drawn specifications from our collections. Highlights from the collections included: Paul Stiff’s exquisitely-detailed information design specifications and George Mackie’s book specifications.

The workshop examined the ways in which drawing can help students internalise typographic knowledge and empower them to effectively plan and implement designs. We explored different kinds of design drawings from quick sketches to wow clients in meetings, through sketches used in our own design planning and exploration, and finally to detailed specification layouts for communicating with typesetters and printers.

The students also had an opportunity to practice rendering type by hand in editorial specifications, using our Linotype type specimens.



 Prof Paul Luna engages our part 2 students with a Paul Stiff specification that effectively demonstrates how typographic hierarchy and detail can be encoded simply through variations in lines.



Visiting student from Ravensburg University, Severin Mantel studies Paul Stiff’s soil chart specification up close.



Part 2 students (from L to R) Ed Hendry, Jessie Webb and Phoebe Madden try out their drawing skills with our specifications and type specimens for inspiration.

Inspired by ephemera



Cameron Armstrong, who has recently graduated from Typography, has won an Examiners’ Award for his self-directed project which was inspired by material from the Maurice Rickards Collection of Ephemera. Here are some examples from the book he designed showing creativity and ingenuity in a variety of nineteenth- and twentieth-century letterforms and design.