Handlettering course on Skillshare

In January 2014 I bought access to an online course on Skillshare. I started with the course on hand-lettering in January but couldn’t continue because of exams. Then when the summer holidays began I could start right where I left off.

Practice for the course on hand-lettering
Practice for the course on hand-lettering

For those of you who don’t know about Skillshare: it’s an online learning community, a bit like Coursera, where you can take online classes on different subjects. Where Coursera specializes in academic courses from universities, Skillshare mostly caters to creatives and entrepreneurs. Some examples of courses you can find on Skillshare are calligraphy, logo design, entrepreneurship, creative thinking and writing film scripts.

a screenshot of the skillshare website
This is what Skillshare looks like if you’re taking a course.

You can either pay a monthly fee for full access, or you can buy access to specific courses, which is what I did since I don’t always have time. Once you have paid for a specific course, you can always access the course materials.

The course I bought is called “Lettering 1: The First Steps of Hand-Lettering: Concept to Sketch”. The teacher, Mary Kate McDevitt, gives short video lectures and exercises and shows us tips and tricks on handlettering. It’s really cool and for 25 dollar for the whole course it was an absolute bargain.

I’ll keep you guys up to date about my progress. I’m having loads of fun drawing all kinds of funky letters and practicing fancy handwriting. For those of you who can’t wait for blogposts: you can take a look at my project page on Skillshare.

Stop motion short: the history of typography

I’m working on a Skillshare project at the moment (more about that here) and I came across this handy stop motion video that explains the history of typography in a mere 5 minutes! I think it’s really handy for when you want to search for a specific font but you don’t know the exact category — knowing the different between humanist sans and geometric sans is really useful when browing sites such as myfont and fontstore.com! This video makes it really easy to find out what kind of font you’re looking for.

If you like this kind of stuff and you want to learn more about typography, be sure to check out the book Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton. It’s quite a good primer on everything font-related. If you live in the vicinity of Nijmegen, you might be able to borrow it from me. ;)

Summer read for motivation: Brick by Brick by Stephen McCranie

I have a hard time finding the motivation to finish my huge list of projects during the summer break.

I survived my first year of my masters studies and the summer holidays are finally here. After the exams in June, I desperately needed some downtime so I took a week off. But now, after a week of no deadlines, no obligations, only parties and days of leisurely strolling around the city, I find that it is very hard start working again. It’s not a lack of discipline, mind you — although I think the lack of deadlines certainly doesn’t help.

But something happened to me today when I found the website Doodle-alley by Stephen McCranie. The website contains an online book, “Brick by Brick”, that contains motivational essays and comics about being a creator, based on McCranie’s experience as a cartoon artist. I can definitely relate to the feelings and pitfalls described in the book and the comics are both well-drawn and inspirational. Read the the first chapter of Brick by Brick.

Goals are scary, a panel from Brick-by-Brick by Stephen McCranie
A panel from Brick-by-Brick by Stephen McCranie

I can recommend this book as a inspirational summer read that will also (hopefully) provide some motivation. I hope you will be as inspired and motivated by Brick-by-Brick as me. Enjoy!