Font design course

Summer 2014, two-week course, July 14–25
Enrollment is now open and space is limited.

To download an application click here.


Font design is a valuable skill for a graphic designer. Beyond the creation of fonts, such talents are useful in logotype design when there is a need to deal with the details and overall shapes of letters or to develop a logo from scratch.

In this graphic design course students explore the arts and architecture of Siena and create an uppercase typeface inspired by an aspect of the city. Students will learn traditional Roman letterform proportions and foundation concepts in font design.

Lectures on the history of typography, Italy’s contribution to the evolution of the Latin alphabet, traditional letterform proportions, and experimental typography will augment the course. A majority of the work will be done off of the computer (with a brush and gauche) giving students the opportunity to refine their craftsmanship and critical eye. The course will be held in a studio with tables and a critique space. There is also access to Macintosh computers. Students will visit the Siena city archives to see examples of letterforms dating as far back as 1100 AD.class-processThis course should meet most university requirements for three credits. Students interested in credit should first check with their university. A syllabus is available upon request.

*No Prerequisites, Open to all levels of experience.

Instructor: Donald Tarallo

Space is limited to 8 students. 

Contact time: 65 hours (studio/design time 45, excursions to museums and locations of cultural significance 14, Italian language basics 6)

These hours are divided over weekends and Monday through Friday 9 am to 4 pm.
Example overview (the 2013 itinerary):
Saturday; arrival
Sunday; city and museum visits
Monday to Friday; 9am to 4pm (studio time, two Italian classes)
Saturday; museum visits
Sunday; free day
Monday to Friday; 9am to 4pm (studio time)

Cost: 1700 € euros, which is around $2,200 dollars

*This fee only covers tuition and lodging (double rooms with shared bathrooms). Airfare/transportation, food, and materials are not included in this price.

For an up-to-date currency conversion to dollars visit:

For more information on the course or the syllabus contact:

For questions about enrollment email Lisa Nonken:

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2013 Student examples

Megumi Koyama

Below are links to Megumi Koyama’s letters and process:

 Kai Takahashisketchbookkai-processpranzare-computerpranzare-1

Information on Siena

Photos of Siena