Where to Learn Hand Lettering Online
Hand lettering is, at its core, the process of turning the alphabet into artwork. With digital print taking over everyone’s lives, more and more people are seeking out the human-tinged and organic quality of hand-lettered writing and logos. While it’s possible to hire a capable artist to develop unique typography for a business or to buy a font, many prefer to learn the craft for themselves, whether it’s for additional income or as a hobby. Here you’ll find five great places to learn the art of hand lettering online, some paid, some free, but all of them an excellent intro to the process.
A Free Introduction
If you just have a passing interest in typography and only care to know the very basics, your best bet is opting for a simple, free, and extremely basic beginner’s course that covers the essentials. For that, there’s often no better place to start than YouTube.
The Intro to Hand Lettering video is a fine place to begin. Less than six minutes long, anyone intrigued by lettering, but not quite committed to the cause, can dip a proverbial toe in the subject. The tutorial covers the basics, like paper, pens, and more. It even includes a free printable.
An Inexpensive Beginner’s Course
Novices genuinely want to develop a skill should look for a more comprehensive class that teaches the basics, of course, but also what to do with those skills once they’re mastered. Skillshare is a website that lets a wide variety of professionals teach others how to do what they know best.
Starting at $10 a month or $20 for a single class, anyone can join up, take a class, and learn a new talent. The First Steps of Hand Lettering: Concept to Sketch is an example of what’s available, and it provides 11 video lessons on lettering. The two-hour class will help amateurs create a piece of artwork they can use in real life.
A Selection of Tutorials
While Skillshare does have a wealth of classes and tutorials, sometimes you want to learn increasingly difficult steps from the same tutor over time. In that case, you’ll have to seek out a specialist that can guide you from beginning to mastery. Following one person has its ups and downs, one being that you can’t always be certain they’ll post in a timely manner. Ryan Hamrick is a staff writer at The Industry, and he posts tutorials of increasing difficulty on the site. Sometimes it’s weekly and sometimes it’s random, but the information is extremely useful. It’s not the best place to learn from scratch; you should have a ready foundation, but this method is free and recommended.
Becoming a Professional
If you already know you want to create hand-lettered type for money or as a very serious hobby, there’s no point in wasting time on YouTube videos or arbitrarily posted blogs. Seanwes, or Sean McCabe, is a professional hand-lettering artist who teaches online courses. Like a real class, his tutorials feature lessons, resources, and even quizzes to help you excel. The 10-course Master Class is exhaustive and ensures you can make real money from designing type. It costs about $300, but you can revisit the lessons as often as necessary.
Learning how to draw unique fonts is an enviable and useful skill, but not everyone has the time, money, or inclination to create letters by hand from scratch, though they may adore the look and style of an organically made typeface. Fortunately, there are thousands of people out there who are happy to do it for you. Simply check out some of the amazing artists at Creative Market creating hand-lettered type right now, and select your favorite for invitations, logos, or posters.