Learn about basic type language.
- [Instructor] Typography is the word used to describe the artist selecting and arranging type to make his display legible, easy to consume, and appealing. It's an essential component of the graphic design skillset, and you're going to need to develop an understanding of at least the essential typographic terms and conventions. You'll discover it has a language all of its own that's evolved over centuries, and it's still in use today even in our digital world when we're talking about type. You don't have to learn it all at once, though.
In this chapter, we'll be covering the essentials, and you can learn more as you progress. And I can highly recommend the courses by Anna Schultz and Charles Nicks as further viewing when you're ready to dive a little more deeper into the topic later. But for now, we're going to cover some of the most basic terms, some of which you may well know already. So, let's see what your basic typographic knowledge is like. In the word on the screen now, I have one uppercase glyph, or character, at the start of this word.
We often call these caps, or capitals, too. The remainder of the type is in lowercase. And they actually get these names from the days of compositing when the type, made of metal, would be kept in wooden cases in upper and lower rows, just in case, no pun intended, you were wondering. Type sits along a line called the baseline. It's invisible to us most of the time, and I say that because some applications like Illustrator display it when you're adding or moving type around.
And this is perhaps the most important line for us to be aware of, as it forms the basis of other measurements, as you'll see later in this chapter. Above the baseline is our second most important line, properly known as the meanline. But most people refer to it as the X-height in practice. And it's the line that determines the height relationship between the upper and lowercase characters. Now, there are other lines, but they're used in the construction of the type by the type designer, and we don't need to concern ourselves with those, really.
For now, you've just discovered the ones you mainly need to be concerned with.
- The creative process
- Layout and composition
- Transforming images and assets in Photoshop
- Drawing logos in Illustrator
- Designing graphics and documents in InDesign
Skill Level Beginner
Graphic Design Foundations: Typographywith Ina Saltz2h 23m Beginner
Learning Graphic Design: Techniqueswith John McWade1h 7m Intermediate
Graphic Design Foundations: Colorwith Mary Jane Begin1h 57m Beginner
1. The Creative Process
2. Layout and Composition
Recommended courses1m 10s
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