Online International Summer School UL ALUO Type Design with Gerry Leonidas

Online International Summer School UL ALUO Type Design with Gerry Leonidas

20 – 24 August 2020

The online course begins with an understanding of type genres, and helps participants conceptualise typefaces and plan typeface families. It introduces writing, sculpting, and synthetic methodologies for style consistency. Systematic development across styles and optical sizes is supported with workflow examples and test documents. Beginning participants will develop with a clear understanding of typeface design spaces, and develop skills for translating their sketches into workable fonts that can be used to typeset test documents. Experienced participants will be able to refine their designs, understand how to position typefaces for specific markets, and explore originality and identity within realistic briefs. The material used in the course can be documented, shared, and re-used. 


Gerry Leonidas is a Professor of Typography at the University of Reading, UK. His research interests cover the practice of typeface design as a response to wider contexts. He supervises research at MA and PhD levels, and lectures globally on typography, typeface design, and typographic education. He is active in enterprise and knowledge transfer projects, helping companies transform their in-house learning processes, and maximise the value of their design resources. He is the Director of Postgraduate Programmes for Typography & Graphic Communication, which are recognised as global reference points for research-based teaching in a practical discipline. He developed and launched the TDi summer course in typeface design, now in its twelfth year, which pioneered an intensive, research-based format for short courses in design. Gerry is also former President of ATypI, and founding member of Granshan Foundation. Through these roles he has been instrumental in outreach, mentoring, and education initiatives.


Gerry Leonidas will be assisted by Alja Herlah and Krista Likar. Alja and Krista are leading heads of Tipo Brda society and co-founders of the Slovenian type foundry Type Salon. Alja holds an MA in Graphic and Interactive Communications where she focused on designing non-Latin typefaces. After graduation she broadened her skills as a font developer in Berlin and London. She is currently working as a Teaching Assistant at Academy of Fine Arts and Design. Krista is an experienced graphic designer, focusing also on type design and lettering. As a participant, she became involved in type design at the Tipo Brda workshops and later became an active member and organiser of workshops and lectures. 


International summer school is coordinated by Associate Professor Domen Fras, a typography teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design, University of Ljubljana. For many years, he was a mentor at the international typeface design workshops Tipo Brda and is a member of ATypI. He feels excellent among the students, especially when teaching typography and typeface design, the fields of his practice and study.


20 August

Introduction to the course | group working method
Presentation Identifying genres and styles 
Exercise Group Basic Key proportions and patterns for rapid development
Exercise Group Advanced Setting up a family design space 

Feedback Individually and in groups 

21 August

Presentation Typographic proportions to inform typeface design decisions
Exercise Group Basic Spacing methodologies
Exercise Group Advanced Developing/refining styles 

Feedback Individually and in groups 

22 August
Feedback Individually and in groups 

Presentation The type market | career options
Feedback Individually and in groups 

23 August 
Ljubljana Type walk guided by Domen Fras

24 August 

Presentation Studying typefaces in detail to improve your briefs
Feedback Individually and in groups 

Final presentation and feedback 
Summary observations 


You will need pencils, black markers of different widths, an eraser and transparent paper. To transfer sketches into the digital environment, a computer is required with a program to digitize typefaces such as Glyphs App or FontLab Studio (both offer a 30-day trial). And page-setting programs such as Adobe CC.


The summer school will be held through an online platform that allows us to interact in both larger and smaller groups. Lectures will be recorded and available to all participants. The online lectures mode is based on the already designed online school of the University of Reading.

Before you start the workshop, you will receive an invitation and code to join the group on the platform.

The project manager from UL ALUO will monitor the participation of registered students and keep a record of attendance.


The complete attendance and final artwork presented at the Summer school website is awarded with 3 ECTS. Participants of the programme will have to attend at least 80% of the classes in order to receive the certificate; otherwise they will not receive any transcript from the UL ALUO. A formal certificate will be issued upon completion of the programme.


The application to the workshop is open to all who want to improve and deepen their typographic knowledge. We invite students and experts of graphic design, website developers, architects, artists etc. to participate in this workshop. A good knowledge of the English language is required.

The summer school is limited to 20 participants; the program will be implemented for a minimum of 15 applicants.

The selected group will be informed by July 15.

We reserve the right to cancel the event.


Please fill in the online application:

Your application will be automatically recorded.

Your application should include a single PDF portfolio (maximum 10 MB) and optional a link to your website describing your experience and interest in typeface design and lettering. The portfolio should include relevant projects demonstrating your knowledge of design and typography and any other information that could be relevant to the workshop. Do not forget to say something about yourself and your abilities. Keep it short and sweet.


30 June 2020


250 EUR

The price of the entry fee includes an unlimited access for all online lectures, demonstrations and tutorials. Basic digital handouts will also be provided. The registration fee must be paid within 2 weeks of the conformation email. Candidates are officially enrolled into the summer school only after payment. The registration fee for students of the University of Ljubljana is reduced by 20 %. In case of cancellation, 80 % of your tuition fee will be refunded in case of:

  • Illness (you must provide a medical report),
  • Severe illness or death of a close relative (i.e. parents, siblings, spouse/partner, children; you must provide a medical report).

No other reasons for reimbursement will be accepted!

To deregister please write to:


After the selection process, the accepted participants will receive further information regarding payment (bank account number etc.) via email. Bank transactions have to be completed by 29 July 2020.

Please keep in mind that in case of international money transfers banks may charge service fees which have to be covered in full by the participant. The University of Ljubljana Academy of Fine Arts and Design will not assume any charges for participants’ money transfers and the summer school fee has to be received in full.

The International Summer School Ljubljana Type Days is partly financed by the University of Ljubljana.