Handwritten Expressive Lettering in the Digital Age

Steven Heller, Mirko Ilic

"A fun and varied collection of recent posters, books, ads, and other designed pieces that all employ type that is scrawled, scratched, stitched, or otherwise noodled."—Communication Arts

Hand-drawn graphics mark a return to the creator's immediacy and craft. Increasingly, advertising campaigns, CD covers, and branding are adopting the rough-hewn style of manually created typography. This is the first publication to offer a complete overview of handwritten typographics, drawing on an extensive array of letterforms from around the world.

At the heart of the book are hundreds of examples, presented in creative themes: "Scrawl" (letterforms that are raw, splotchy, untidy); "Scratch" (scraped, cut, and gouged fonts); "Script" (type that is sinuous and ornate); "Simulate" (faces that have been redrawn or copied); "Shadow" (dimensional, voluminous, and monumental letterforms); "Suggestive" (forms that imply the metaphorical, surreal, and symbolic); and "Sarcastic" (the ironic, comic, and satiric in lettering).

In an age of digital typography, Handwritten returns to the values of craft. This outstanding collection of unusual, meticulously wrought, and often breathtaking pieces is a must for students and practitioners of design.


Steven Heller


Steven Heller is co-chair of the MFA Design: Designer as Author program at the School of Visual Arts, New York. His many previous books include
Typographic Universe, New Modernist Type, and Scripts.

Mirko Ilic


Mirko Ilic, the New York-based graphic designer, has won numerous awards for his hand-drawn design work.