Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

School of Visual Arts

Making Typeface Families

School of Visual Arts via Kadenze


Continuing from the previous courses in The Complete Typographer, Making Typeface Families focuses on drawing a complete alphabet from start to finish, then adding bold and italic variations. Students will choose a sample document for which they'll create a typeface, translate concepts from rough pencil sketches to digitized finishes, and establish cohesiveness in a small trial range of selected characters. Through study of various letterform elements, students will establish how these parts need to come together in a logical way to form a set of related letters and eventually, an entire typeface.


  • How to Make an Italic and a Bold
    • In this session we’ll identify what makes up the structures of an italic and a bold, and I’ll walk you through how to draw one of each of your own to accompany your textface.
  • Completing the Alphabet, Numbers, and Punctuation
    • Last time we drew our control characters and expanded on them. This session we’re doing ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING ELSE in the typeface. That includes the rest of the alphabet (uppercase and lowercase), the numbers, and some standard punctuation.
  • Picking a Purpose and Getting Started
    • In this session we’ll talk about how we’re going to pick a direction for a new typeface, and check out an overview of the software we’re going to use to make it.
  • Drawing Control Characters
    • Last time we picked a text document to design a new text face for, did some sketching on paper for it, and got a quick and dirty intro to font editing software. This session we’re going to do the first twelve letters of our first typeface.

Taught by

James Montalbano


5.0 rating, based on 1 Class Central review

Start your review of Making Typeface Families

  • Anonymous
    Great walkthrough of all that is involved in creating an alphabet from scratch, lots of guidance, and tips.

Never Stop Learning.

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Someone learning on their laptop while sitting on the floor.