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T]M20 Project: The adaptation of roman capitals construction to lowercase

This presentation will go through the process of a TypeMedia project, and will be a reflection on the roman alphabet, and the relation between uppercase and lowercase. The Latin script is a bicameral script, and uses two alphabets for a given language. Those two alphabets originally belonged to different ways of writing from different periods of our history. The uppercase has been inherited from the Romans, and the lowercase came around the middle ages after the development of cursive writings. Capitals were painted on walls with a brush, and minuscules were written with a nib on paper. Stemming from these simple facts, this presentation will explain how Arnaud Chemin tried to reconcile those alphabets in a closer relation, using the brush, singularly, as its basis. The talk will explain the implied letterform changes from an analogue to a digital environment. The process description will include an important parameter—typography scale. Calligraphy and lettering are very appealing when larger in size, but many changes must be made to create the best text typeface for readability. Because the project has a strong historical approach, this can be used as a starting point for debate around what’s new in typography. The presentation includes a lot of historical and calligraphic materials, drawings, and a nonlinear way of thinking. It will also review unexplored and abandoned paths during a research process.


Arnaud Chemin

Arnaud Chemin is a French type and graphic designer who recently earned a master’s degree from TypeMedia. Chemin first studied print graphic design in Paris, then moved to the Ésad Amiens to specialize in new media interactions and typography.