Designer Presentation: Jessica Hische

Since the focus of this seminar is on analog typography, I would like to present one of my favorite type designers whose work involved mostly with hand lettering. Her name is Jessica Hische. Here’s a short bio of Jessica from The Great Discontent:

Jessica Hische is a letterer, illustrator, and self-described “avid internetter”. After graduating with a degree in Graphic and Interactive Design from Tyler School of Art, she worked for Headcase Design in Philadelphia and was Senior Designer at Louise Fili Ltd. After two and a half years, she left to further her freelance career and has also become well known for her side projects including Daily Drop Cap and the micro-sites, Mom This is How Twitter Works, Should I Work for Free?, and Don’t Fear the Internet, a collaborative project with [her husband] Russ.

Jessica’s clients include Wes Anderson, Tiffany & Co., the New York Times, Penguin Books, Target, Leo Burnett, and Wired Magazine. She’s been named a Print Magazine New Visual Artist (20 under 30), one of Forbes 30 under 30 in Art and Design, and an ADC Young Gun. She currently serves on the Type Directors Club Board of Directors.

Let’s take a look at some of her featured projects.

Jess & Rush Keepsake

This is a printed book based on their online wedding invitation, which is a crazy parallax web site.

Mail Chimp logo revision

I love the details that went into the revision to make the letters more legible at small sizes.

CAA Friday Night Party

Here’s an elegant invitation based on theme of The Great Gatsby.

Minot Font

A display typeface to use used for special occasions such as wedding invites and baby announcements (minot means “child” in French).

Penguin Drop Caps

A series of twenty-six collectible hardcover editions of fine works of literature. Each cover featured a letter illustrated by Jessica.

Moonrise Kingdom

Jessica worked directly with director Wes Anderson on his recent film titled Moonrise Kingdom. Initially she was hired to create 20 credits in the beginning of the movie and a typeface to be used for the end credits. She ended up creating two fonts—a display and a text weight of the same typeface. “Working with Wes was an absolute dream” she said, “I was amazed and impressed at just how involved he is with every aspect of his films.”

Side projects

Aside from client work, Jessica creates side projects to exercise her creativities.

Thousand Under 90

Go ahead and give yourself an award.

Don’t fear of the Internet

A series of video that teaches HTML and CSS to none-web designers.

Quotes & Accents

A brief, useful guide of how to create smart quotes and dashes.

The Daily Drop Cap

A little side project that made a big impact on her career. She illustrated a letter a day and posted them online. The site received more than 100,000 visitors per month.

About Her Site

Her visual design skill alone is incredible and yet what I admired about Jessica is that she also teaches herself coding to build her own web site. In addition to learning HTML and CSS, she also learned CMS. With her recent redesign, she moved off WordPress and rebuilt her site with Kirby, which is a static file generator. I read about Kirby from following her work and played it with a bit. I am using it on a small client project and quite impressed with its lightweight, flexibility and security.

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