Typography is a practice.

Whether you’re a novice or an expert in any medium, good decisions take practice — and great ones stand on a solid foundation. Typekit Practice is a collection of resources and a place to try things, hone your skills, and stay sharp. Everyone can practice typography.

Try using shades for eye-catching emphasis, browse useful references like advice about typographic hierarchy, or peruse our library of recommended books on typography and design. Sometimes it even helps to remind ourselves what typography is and why it’s valuable.

Featured topic: history & stories

References to articles, books, websites, talks, and more, organized by topic and sometimes used in lessons.

“Adobe’s first retail product, back in 1985, was type”

Christopher Slye, writing for Typekit:

Soon after, the Adobe Originals program was conceived […] to create full-featured, timeless typefaces with a high degree of technical care — combining thoughtful type design with an awareness of how best to engineer those fonts to perform well in any conditions.

Christopher joined Adobe as part of the Type team (the type foundry within Adobe). In this blog post, he goes on to profile Adobe Caslon, Adobe Garamond, Kepler, and Minion.

Pairing typefaces with history in mind

Aura Seltzer, writing for Typekit:

Focus on the backstory of each typeface — the context for its creation. You can combine typefaces that were informed by the same tool, output medium, historic era, or concept. For example, you can pair typefaces that were both inspired by calligraphic brushwork, were both designed for low-resolution printers, were both designed in the early 1900s, or were both conceived to address legibility.

Paying attention to history is one of several approaches Aura takes in this study about combining typefaces.

“The real problem was that they used type at all”

Mark Simonson, writing in his notebook:

Movie posters, signs, magazine covers, movie titles and credits — back in the 1920s and 1930s, that kind of thing was almost always lettered by hand. Type – and it would have been metal type, back then – was not up to the job. There were too few styles, too few sizes. It just wasn’t as flexible as someone skilled with a brush. Things that are so easy for us to do with type today were practically impossible back then, which provided plenty of work for letterers.

If you’re careful, it is possible to get close to the look of lettering with modern fonts. Some are even made to look that way.

You’ll find a few such fonts classified as Script or Handmade on Typekit.

Browse references