Typography: Mark Making, Letters, Words, & Books

There are no available registration dates at this time.

The origin of written language is unknown, but started with marks on a surface. In this weeklong workshop, students will explore ink as a means to create beautiful surfaces on which we will then write and print messages to form pamphlets, posters, books and more. 

Led by calligrapher Jan Owen, we will do mark making exercises and experimentation to create lines, textures, images and words with a variety of implements: invented and conventional. There will be a brief history of letters and calligraphy (with dip pens) so that personal handwriting can become expressive and consistent. Students will make books combining these elements. 

The second part of the week, working with Richard Reitz Smith, will engage in handsetting type and letterpress printing to help learn and understand the expansive history and realm of typography – the art and practice of arranging type, processing data, and printing of it.

Please bring an apron or old shirt, plus short poems or songs you might want to work with. Feel free to bring any specialty paper or photographs or ephemera that you would like to use. 

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Instructor: Jan Owen

Jan Owen is a calligraphic book artist. Her hand lettered books and scrolls are in the Library of Congress, National Museum of Women in the Arts and many library special collections.

Instructor: Richard Reitz Smith

Richard Reitz Smith is the Book Arts Program Chair and Studio Manager at Maine Media. He is an artist trained as a graphic designer and excels in marrying traditional techniques with modern technology in the pursuit of all forms of book arts and letterpress printing.