The Typism Skills Summit features ten typographers and hand-letterers. Peer over their shoulders as they teach you their techniques and share their secrets in a series of intimate video masterclasses.
Today we meet Newcastle type designer, Wayne Thompson. His Typism Skills Summit Class will teach you how to refine your hand lettering in a surprisingly cheap and easy way.
The third in our blog series featuring Typism Skills Summit presenters is Wayne Thompson. I have known Wayne for a few years now; ever since I took a hand lettering class he ran in Brisbane. I asked him to speak at the first Typism conference, and the rest, as they say, is history.
I think what impresses everyone about Wayne is how multi-talented he is. He could just as easily have run a workshop on typeface design or vectoring, but his process of refining his hand lettering is just as amazing and super useful.
He runs Australian Type Foundry and designs custom and commercial typefaces, but he also does lovely hand and vectored lettering. He is also renowned for his atrocious dad jokes but was remarkably restrained during his workshop presentation.
We visited Wayne in his light and airy workshop/shed in Newcastle and made him rearrange the studio so that we could get access with the cameras to record all the stages of his refining process.
Wayne starts off by using brush pens to get the basic shapes and flow of his letterforms. He draws and redraws the same word until he is happy with how it is looking. Depending on the size of the brush pen, he may have to scale it up on the photocopier for the next stage.
The next step is to redraw over the brush lettering with a pencil. At this stage, Wayne lets us in on a major cost savings secret. He uses baking or greaseproof paper instead of tracing paper! This frees him up to make as many sketches as he likes.
Wayne uses the best bits of each brush letter form and assembles a full sketch. He then refines the sketch one more time, this time he plays with the shapes and angles of each stroke to make them cleaner and more consistent.
It ceases to be a piece of brush lettering and starts taking shape as a logotype. After refining it in pencil a few times, he moves to proper tracing paper and completes one final sketch ready for scanning and vectoring.