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Cardiff Type Hunt

As part of our “type and image’ module we were given the task of the finding different typographical terms including: Old Face, Transitional, Humanist, Script, Roman, Italic, Majuscule, Miniscule, Geometric, Condensed, Ligature, Gothic, Slab serif, Clarendon, Triangular serif, Bifurcated serif, Trifurcated serif, Vestigial, Fat face, Nesting, Superior Letters and Versals Lombardic. I presented my research and findings in my sketchbook.


On Tuesday morning (25/09/18) we went into Cardiff city centre to participate in a type hunt. Working in small groups of four we were given a list of four different typefaces which we had to find and record through photographs. My group were looking for Condensed, Gothic, Ligature and Geometric.


The image above is an example of a condensed typeface which has been used, you are able to tell this as the characters are taller than they are wide and they are close together which are all characteristics of the typeface. This typeface was an interesting one to find because we noticed that it was intriguingly common around the centre of Cardiff.

Next was Geometric which again seemed to be a commonly used typeface across Cardiff. These are easily recognisable due to being based on perfect circles and triangles, alongside having even strokes throughout the letterforms. I particularly found this typeface recognisable due to the shape of the ‘o’ which is practically a perfect circle.


Ligature was a difficult one to find around the city centre and we were able toe find one example of it on a jewellers. This is a particularly special character as it combines two characters together into a single character.

Gothic was our final typeface to find, which proved to be particularly difficult to find. There was initial confusion regarding what gothic was as some thought it was blackletter and others thought it was related to sans serif fonts. This doesn’t appear to be visible throughout Cardiff.

During the afternoon we used our recorded photographs to produce an outcome as a year group. We took letterforms from our research, we drew them and cut them out accurately which we then stuck to the wall. This created an aesthetically pleasing piece on the wall outside the entrance to the Graphic Communication studio.

One letter form that I decided to create was a ligature which I thought was one of the most interesting typeface I had come across during my type hunt. It was a difficult letterform to draw as it is technically to characters but I managed to draw and cut out the letterform out.

Before starting this project David told us that it would change the way that we see type forever, which is already has. Whenever I see a sign or packaging anything with typography on I am analysing it and working out which typeface it is and if it’s appropriate for it’s use. This small project definitely has helped to understand the basics of typography better but also highlighted to me the impact that a certain typeface might have on a way a sign or poster is read.


An Introduction to Typography

This week we started our first module called “Type and Image”  which we will be looking at over the next five weeks. This begun first thing on Monday morning with a lecture called ‘An Introduction to Type’ which gave an insight into the basics about typography and how its a fundamental principle to the discipline of Graphic Communication.

I was then give two workshops to participate in related to the elements I had just learnt during the lecture. The first work shop involved me taking either a serif or sans serif font and tracing it to write out my first name and surname. I used a serif font which was harder than I initially thought, but I liked the challenge. In my first attempt of writing my name I found that I had placed the characters to close together, meaning the kerning was incorrect. In my surname I found that the first part of my name was correct and looked right. Where as the last part, in particular the ‘a’ was incorrect as it wasn’t sitting correctly on the base line. On my second attempt I found that I had a better understanding of where the letters needed to sit together in terms of the base line, x – height and kerning.


The second workshop I completed was a kerning and tracking exercise, I was give two words with incorrect tracking and kerning which I had to make right. To do this I had to cut around each letter individually then glue them onto the baseline with the correct kerning. This task was particularly difficult to do as I had to do it optically, eventually I found that through squinting I was able to see if the kerning was accurate. Reflecting back on this, I found that the kerning was mostly accurate however, there was a double space in the word composition.


I found that this was an extremely useful workshop and lecture for me as coming from a photography and art based background I’m keen to learn more about typography and how it’s one of the fundamental principle underpinning the discipline of Graphic Communication. I think this will help when I am trying to ensure I have the correct kerning, tracking and leading when working digitally.


Constellation: An Introduction

As part of the induction week activities, we were given an introduction into Constellation and how it would impact our chosen discipline. Prior to this session I wasn’t clear on what constellation was or how it would benefit my discipline in the long term.

It was described to me like making a cup of tea, without a cup, milk, hot water or tea you cannot make a cup of tea. If the tea is missing then its only a cup of hot watery milk which isn’t a cup of tea. In terms of studying, I am the cup, milk is field, the hot water is subject and the tea is constellation. Without having constellation you will not have the knowledge required, you need all three to help achieve your goal. This analogy was useful as it showed me how all three areas will help one another and overall benefit my discipline.

During the introduction session we were asked to complete a short task where we had to describe and analyse an image. This task gave me an insight into some of the skills I will require to complete constellation. Initially when asked to describe the image I was making inferences about what it could be about, when I needed to simply say what I saw in the image. Next I was asked to analyse the image where we were able to assess what the graphic might be used for and why they had been done in that particular way.

Reflecting on the task it taught me to describe, analyse and critique which I think are skills that I am going to need to complete constellation. This session was really useful in helping me understand constellation and what is expected of me. It also helped me when completing the Constellation 4: Concept task on Moodle as I was able to start understanding thinking about what I could apply to my subject through constellation.



Induction Week

Prior to starting this week I had  completed A- levels in Art, Photography and Product Design which didn’t offer me a massive insight into graphic communication. I knew that starting this course would involve me taking an idea or message and creating a visual form in order to communicate it. Being a creative individual who is intrigued by type and colour, I knew that this discipline was where I wanted to direct my study. I know that my discipline involves working closely with designers on projects to ensure an outstanding design is created and communicates to the audience.


Miranda Kate Harr, 2017, Dyslexia Portrait

Starting my first week at Cardiff School of Art and Design I have experienced so many different activities that have engaged me. I believe the team building challenge to protect an egg gave me an insight towards learning to work in a team as this is a major part of the course. Hearing about the Cardiff Met EDGE has interested me as it makes me think about how I am going to develop in my discipline but also as an individual. I’ve experienced new activities this week which I haven’t previously engaged with before which excites me about the coming year. 

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Leon Zernitsky, 2017, Teamwork

I’m keen to learn about graphic communication and get stuck into the modules. I am particularly looking forward to learning about type and image together, how they can work together to compliment each other but also how they can be used together to create outstanding pieces of work. Throughout the past week my perceptions have changed about university. I have become more aware of what is expected of me as a student but also understand a little more about what my first couple of weeks in university will entail. I am looking forward to the entire journey and challenges ahead. 

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Brent Goldman, 2013, Pathways in the sand