Intro to the Typographic Grid | Mengke Z. | Skillshare

Intro to the Typographic Grid

Mengke Z., Graphic Designer

Intro to the Typographic Grid

Mengke Z., Graphic Designer

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23 Lessons (34m)
    • 1. Class Intro

    • 2. Class Requirement

    • 3. Class Project

    • 4. The Grid

    • 5. Paper Sizes

    • 6. Typefaces: Part One

    • 7. Typefaces: Part Two

    • 8. Margins: Part One

    • 9. Margins: Part Two

    • 10. Set Up Documents

    • 11. The Type Area

    • 12. Type Sizes

    • 13. Set Up Columns

    • 14. Leading

    • 15. Set Up Grid Fields

    • 16. Paragraphs

    • 17. On Ragged Lines

    • 18. Titles and Subtitles

    • 19. On Justification

    • 20. Images

    • 21. Page Numbers

    • 22. Four Column Layout

    • 23. Summary

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About This Class

About the Class

In this class, we'll learn how to construct and apply the typographic grid. 

The grid is one of these fundamentals I learned during the first few days of design school. It's also one of the basics I've forgotten how to use it properly over time. How do I construct a grid to aid the content rather than using the same grid over and over?

This class is for designers who wish to revisit the typographic grid, and those who are interested in typography. You don't need any formal training in graphic design to take this class, but I assume you are familiar with san serifs, serifs, and Adobe InDesign. 

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Mengke Z.

Graphic Designer





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1. Class Intro: Hi, everyone in this class, we learn how to construct. Apply the typographic grid. My name's Kate among I'm a designer based in San Francisco. So the grid is one of these fundamentals I learned during the first few days. My design school here and unfortunately A has also become one of the basics. I forgot how to use it properly over time, and the question that came back to me was, how do I construct a grid to aid the content rather than using the same grid over and over again for every single project? So I made this class for myself and other designers who wish to revisit the topographic grid, and it is also for those who are interesting topography. You don't need any formal trainings in graphic design to take this class, but I assume you are familiar with San serves, serves and adobe in design. Speaking of being designed, it is the program will use to execute the class project, download the pdf attached. If the content will be working with and by the end, the class. You should have a few well designed pages that Theo look us. If he a part of a beautiful magazine 2. Class Requirement: all you need for this class athe computer and a subscription to Adobe in design Optionally . You can have a printer and a stack of a four papers just because sometimes I found it easier to identify any inconsistencies in the design or typos on a physical piece of paper . So if you have those that would be great, other than that just Mac or PC and Adobe in design. 3. Class Project: for the class project will be designing article on Iceland alone, together with eight photographs, was a part of a magazine. By the end of the class, you will produce two designs of thes same article using different typographic. Grid One is a two column design, and the other one is a four column design. Go ahead, create your project here and introduce yourself. And if you don't like the provided content, of course you can find your own. Just make sure the article is not too long, preferably 100 2000 words. That's plenty And find eight photographs or 10 or 12. It's up to you. 4. The Grid: a grid divides a two dimensional, three dimensional spacing, too. Small fields we see. This is columns and rows, so the field with would be the column with and the depth of field would be how many lines of text you can fit into each. You can also subdivide fields. For instance, we have the six fields great. Here. You can further divided into 12 fields to 36 so a grid is constructed to solve visual problems. Designers Typographer is used it to design books, magazines, brochures, manuals and posters and you name it, and Web designers and developers also using their work. It helps the designers to communicate and present information efficiently so that we all can remember it better. 5. Paper Sizes: for this class project will be setting our documents size as a four. Now the reason why I picked a four because it is a system that's may sense to me, the A Siri's. So take a four. If you fold it into half, you get a five. Folding a five into half. You get a six. The other way around works like back to so adding two pieces of a four. Together, you get a three and the whole range goes from a zero to a 10. And then you also have to be serious, which is the on trend version of the A Siri's. And there's also the C series, which of low papers for the A. Siri's. So if you want to look more into the international paper sizes off included a few Resource is in the class description. 6. Typefaces: Part One: let's talk about what typeface was she use. This is probably where we struggled the most, because they're just so many type is out there. So for starters, it is best to stick with one type phase. Find one that's well designed. That means it comes with a brat awaits, such as the regular, semi bold boat, or sometimes is categorizes book medium, semi bold and bold. Also, make sure you pay attention to its italics. Make sure it is not landed, Roman, but true italics. Now sometimes, if you're going to design with a lot of numbers, you need to pay attention to the text figures on the titling figures within the typeface, specifically full body text. My favorite go to has being Hoff Lear's Mukri. It comes in four grades, and it's very legible in small sizes. Now the good thing about mercury is that it also comes with a display face called Mukri Display. It display typefaces used for titles, so overall, the have tighter letter spacing, slightly condensed and bigger contrast between the thick and thin strokes. Try to find a face that comes with both text and display 7. Typefaces: Part Two: I know Mochrie has both the text and display face, but also very expensive to practice in a project like this. The good news is that if you already subscribed to Adobe CC, you get access to something called type kit. So I'd recommend star with the classics on type kit, all those that are based on classics such as Adobe Carom um, Pro Meanie in and of Phyllis. These are all very well designed now. If you don't have type kit, I'm hoping you're using a Mac try find something like times now. Notice the's mentioned all serves. I do prefer to use tariffs for body text, but you don't have to any sense. Tariffs with large X haiku work a swell. Just make sure you have able Ratu weights again on type kit. You can search based on these criteria and sink to your desktop CC applications. So for the class project, the two designs one. I would be using mercury text now. Since I don't have Mochrie display, I will be using something called Whitney, which is the sensor that pairs very well with mercury text and the other version. I will be using fright text and display from type kit 8. Margins: Part One: moving on to margins in order force to design a well balanced, um, proportional page, we need to decide on some good margins. Technically, margins exist, so the printers can safely trim off the edge of the paper without affecting the actual text . Adequate margins. Leave enough room for your fingers to hold the publication without obscuring the text. A swell. And in the case of perfect bind books, which don't always open flat, you also want to leave enough space so the text doesn't get wrapped into thes spine. But if you leave too much room all the size, the page, of course, will feel really empty. And if you place the text area too high or too low, a dress feels it's gonna fly off the page. I know for most designers, thes safe bet for this is to have equal margins on all four sides, but that just going to make the page feel very dull. Relax, tension, and if anything, here are three good ratios for you to start with. The 1st 1 we have the 1 to 2 ratio on the 2nd 1 We have the 11.5 to 3 ratio, and then Of course, there's the golden ratio of 5538 now, since I haven't figured out how they calculated that golden racial margins and for the class projects to designs, I'm going to use Thief 1 to 2 ratio for the two column design, and they won 1.5 to 3 ratio for the four column design. Now these are just three examples for you to start with. Of course, you can experiment with your own margin ratios according to the nature of the project. But just remember that for editorial literature, Lee out always leave more margins on the bottom comfort to the top just so that you can counterbalance the heavy appearance of the text block so that it feels like it's floating on the page rather than trying to going off it. 9. Margins: Part Two: Now that we've decided our margin ratios, let's go ahead. Translate those ratios in two numbers so we can create our two in design documents. So for the 2 to 1 ratio, I'm going to set the toppers 20 millimeters the bottomless 40. The in the margin would then be 40 and the outer margin will be 20. And for the other one, which is the 1.5 to 31 ratio, the top margin would be 15 on bottom would be 30 inside will be 20 and the outside will be 10 millimeters. 10. Set Up Documents: Once you have your in design application, open a go ahead click on Create New to New windows going to pop up If you haven't created a four document before you confined there under print, it's just tucked right underneath here. Click on that The With a high. It is going to be reflected on the right column here, and I personally prefer to view eight millimeter because I can go precise on other projects . Make sure your orientation is said to portray facing pages and for this document will for both the document. We're gonna do three pages and then starting with one and leave the columnist one. Right now. We'll get to it in the next few lessons and remember to unclip this little link icon so that we can enter different batteries for the margins. And as we talked about before, the tops going to be 20 millimeter and the bottom is going to be 40 and inside will be 40. On outside will be 20. You can ignore bleat and slug were not going to work on that in this class and just go ahead create And this is our first document. Remember to give a name and save it. I always forget to do that. And it's the same process creating the second document. Just goto file new document on all the setting. That the same except for the margins. Because this one we're going to do topless. 15 bottomless, 30 inside of 20 outsiders. 10 and click on Create. We now have our two documents ready to go. 11. The Type Area: once you have the two documents set up, well, we're going to do is to go to Dropbox paper. That's where our Iceland article is. You can find the link under my project tap. So copy paste order of the text and coming back into in design, well paced everything into this area, which is the type area. And to do that you can, either by clicking on the type toe icon on the left to bar here. Or just go ahead Presti on the keyboard and drag over this type area and then paste everything you'll notice this little red plus on that just means you have hidden text in the text frame on Click on that. Just keep on dragging over to the next page until you review all your text. Once you've done the 1st 1 and go ahead to exactly the same for the 2nd 1 Once we finish pasting, everything will update the 1 to 2 ratio document from the current meanie in Taipei's to mercury display. So select all the text and you can come up here and I have Mercury text G two. I'm gonna use the Roman and for the second document again. Do the same thing Go up here. We're going to use fright text pro and remember to save them once you're done. 12. Type Sizes : all right now, let's work on the type size. I think both document right now is set out 12. So something to consider is that when we read a book or a magazine on the couch on a table , your eyes to the page distances, usually from 30 to 35 centimeters so forth this distance anything from 7.2 12 point to work . There's also something else to consider that each line needs to be 10 words in average per column. For the text to be pleasant, to read too long or too short a lion, our eyes will have to spend more energy tracking the text. Also, the with of the column is always proportional to these size of the text, the big the text, the wide earthy column is and the small, earthy, narrow The column is. And let's check out those three examples. I have this one set in 23 point and obviously be top one, which has 10 words ing average reads the best, and the 2nd 1 I have it set. At 12 point on, I'd pick this one and the 3rd 1 Everything is set in seven point, which is super tiny, and I'd pick the Narrows to call him on the bottom here. All right, so in the next lesson, we're going to set up our columns to see if Thekla 12 point size will work for our columns on our 13. Set Up Columns: to set up the columns were Will do is to go into the A master here, double click on that. So this is a template. Anything you set up here, you are able to apply to all of the pages within this document, or you can select a few of those pages and apply. And, of course, you can have more masters created. But for this class project Ward wrist Stick with one. And make sure you select those two thumbnails up here and go to the main menu under layout , margins and columns. Let's update this number from 1 to 2 and keeping the gutter at 10 millimeters and check this enabled layout adjustment. If it's not already there, you'll see what he does in next Step hit. Okay, go ahead, click on the page thumbnails to come back out and you'll see our text frame has now aligned toothy two columns, which is what exactly? That layout adjustment option did and looks like we only have six words per line in each column. So I'm going to select all of the text again and then update the type size from 12 to 9. Yeah, it looks pretty good we have 10 words ing average per line now. So let's continue with the second document to set up the four column for it again. The same steps a master select those two blank thumbnails going on to layout margins and columns and the column number is for For the cutter. I'm going to use six millimeters things. I don't want the columns to be too narrow and coming back out of there. You can see definitely 12 point is too large for the four column. So for this one, I'm going to use six point because our columns really narrow. I wouldn't go anything smaller than six. 14. Leading: All right, let's fix the leading. The leading is the distance between the lines, like the width of the column is proportional to the text. The leading determines how many lines go into each grade field. So here I applied different settings to our article, and you can tell letting is another element that effects readability. And from the look of it, you probably guessed those two options here are the most reasonable and personally always prefer slightly more space to just so that we can make things easier to read. So for our two column, I'm going to pick this one, which is a nine point text with 13 point letting. And generally speaking, you're letting it about 2 to 4 points more than the text. And usually I will give lengthy articles more leading if I could, without said for our four column because of thes smaller text, I'm going to stick with E nine point lead 15. Set Up Grid Fields: No, we have the columns set up. Next is to divide the page into great fields so we can start arranging different elements such as thedc ALS subtitles, photography and different parts of the text. To divide the page into great fields, we need to first account the lines for our two column. At the moment we have 52 of them. I suppose we want for horizontal divisions, and that makes an eighth grade field layout. We'll need three lines, earthy intermediate spaces. So 50 to minus three week of 49 divided by four is 12 25 which is not a whole number we want. And, of course, the closest to 12 25 is 12. So in order to have 12 lines for each field will need 51 lines. And to do that we can just add one or two millimeters to our margins so we can push out a line. So let's go on top here. Margins and columns. So I'm going to update the top was 21 and the bottom is 42. And to keep the ratio, those two sides of the same so 2142 and I'm going to reduce the gutter from 10 millimeters to eight to make up. The difference is, and now we should have exactly 51 lens those of tested before. Now I'm just going to manually Khoury guys for these four hurries onto divisions. Just keep on dragging those guys and to make sure each field has 12 lines, will place an intermediate space online 13 26 and 39. And I'm also going to update the color here, so it's easier to see when it's red. Now, this is important for each intermediate space. You'll want to make sure the top guide will align to the defender of the last line, and the bottom got here were aligned to the top of the very first line in the next field. This way we can line up or the text across different columns. Of course, you could always let in design make it for you by going to lay out, create guys. But I don't find it to be precise because your last lines D sender in that type area on no , always aligned exactly to the bottom of the margin. Yes, you can see we still got a little bit space here, so I just prefer to do it manually. Don't forget to do it in the Master, though. Once you are happy with those guides, copy everything and double click on here and we'll do paste in place. And then we'll just drag down more guys on the left page accordingly. Oh, and one more thing. Once you have 48 lines, you can also divide your page into six horizontal divisions or eight or 12. So in this case, we only doing for but feel free to experiment. - All right. Next, let's fix the paragraphs. 16. Paragraphs: all right, let's only focus on this two column layout for now, and I'll come back to the fore calmly out when we get to the second last lesson. So besides, adequate leading and column with paragraphs also make a long block of text easy to read. We typically began a paragraph with an empty line preceding it, or by inventing the very first line. Or you could do by an initial letter. Or sometimes we go with small caps. But of course, there are way more options to it, and I got this book here. It's called Explorations in Topography. I will highly recommend you to experiment based on its examples, and it also comes with a neat website where you can play around with the typesetting us. Well, if you have the time anyway, for our article, I chose the basic option, which is to indent the first line roughly four letters. Usually it's three or four letter spaces. Sometimes you can go down to two, and you can do this by going to the paragraph setting, adding value here also, besides indentation, feel free to play with the alignments of the paragraphs, which are those settings here, and we'll talk more about this in the next lesson with the titles together 17. On Ragged Lines: 01 thing I forgot to mention is that when you set the paragraphs those racked rate sometimes it creates this weird shape. There's option in design called balance racked lens, which is hidden under paragraph settings. Right here. Make sure you always toggle this all it helps, and this is the before and after. 18. Titles and Subtitles: So for the titles and subtitles, you want to said them differently to stand out from the body text. This could be done by using different alignments together with larger or border or italic faces. Was this first option here? You can said the title to be flushed left either on racked right text or on justify text on the 2nd 1 Here I indented the titles and subtitles like the rest of paragraph you can do the opposite out, done everything. But then I kept the titles and the byline indented in this case to have a contrast. You can also offset the title to the right. But make sure the subtitle in this case will stay unified with the rest of text and have the body text aligned. Right. So you create this kind of central access, which is nice. And of course, you can also center align them on either justified text or just center, align everything. And if you have several level of subtitles, gave them different visual treatments. So everybody stands out. I also want to mention about the typographic scale. You're probably already familiar with it. Thes are the common sizes developed a long time ago, and typesetting programs like in Design have something similar, and you can check it up here. Future starting and you can just play with different sizes from the list. Over time, you can develop your own scale. So back to our article, since it's clearly divided into four sections have separated each section onto its own page and all of the's subtitles. Ah set in Millcreek text italic and the of the same size as the body text, which is at nine point. I have the first subtitle indented over justified text over two columns and had the rest of them offset. You could also be indented, but I wanted them to take up the column so it feels less empty since we have less content for these three sections. I also want to talk about this title here, which is set in Witney Bold 13 point like we discussed earlier, and the Spy Lin is Mercury text italic but reduced to seven point so we could have a nice contrast with the title and the rest of body on. Both of them are indented six millimeters to be consistent with the rest of the paragraphs and also remember to all indent I don't have this. The word. The very first paragraph of each section 19. On Justification: So oftentimes, when you justify text, you get these rivers happening. Either the letters away too far apart in one line or the away too close to each other in design. Luckily, is able to highlight this for you. You can turn it on by going into the preferences composition, and this is called H and J violations age for hyphenation and JP justification. So to fix most, the rivers will select all of the text and going to the paragraphs tab. It should be just on your right if you have the workstation that specified US topography. But if you don't see them go up to type paragraph and click on this icon, that means more options and just hit just vacation and you'll want to do a combination of thes three. I usually leave word spacing as it is and set letter spacing between minus 3% to 3% and the cliff scaling from 98% to 102%. So once you've done that, just hit OK and your C is better. But there will still be some violations, of course, and this is when you can order the Kern ing manually by press the option key on your Mac and the back and forth errors, and it will highlight the custom Koerting whenever you do it. So this is not something difficult to do. It just takes a little bit time, and I think for justify Texas totally worth it when you get it to look very consistent on every single line. 20. Images: for the photographs was this link. You can download the entire voter from Dropbox and let's take a look. So among the A photographs, we only have one horizontal image. Things, all of them, are stunning. I'm going to place one photo per page, so we got to see more details and remember, always placed the photos according to the content. Make sure you read the content a few times before you start designing it, and things already know where I want each photo to go. I went ahead and brought everything in. And if you don't know how to place an external image, here's how you do it. Go to file. I'm hit place and look for the voter to select the image wonk and come back to in design and just drag over the area and release it. There you have it. I did have to crop every photo here to fit it into our type marriage. It's always wise to work with the photographer together. If this was to be a real project so that we can respect thief photo ratio and will always have a layout that fits the photos better, But it's a class project. These photos are good to go 21. Page Numbers: When it comes to page numbers, their several ways weaken. Do this. We can place them below or above the type area. Or if you know your publication will open flat and there is going to be enough space on the in the margin, feel free to place it there. This is actually one of my favorites because we simply don't see it often enough in practice. Most my books I own you'll have. They're page numbers on the outer edge of the paper, which gives off a more dynamic effect since he gave the edge of the paper more weight. But they're also books that will place their page number on the central axis. These are usually more static and rest awful. You see a lot of these happening in reference books like a dictionary. I always make sure the page number is close enough to the type area, usually with an empty lie in between. So here I have some options for our two column layout, and I'm going to use my favorite location, which is on the in the margin of the page, to insert the page number. Let's go into our master. I'm going to create a eight millimeter Carter on Be in the margin here. This is where our page number will align to and go ahead, create a text frame and go up to type. Insert special characters markers and choose current page number, and you'll see the letter A appears here. I'm going to align this to the right, set it the same as Thiebaud E Text, which is Mercury tax nine point with the 13 point leading and then would do the same for the other side. - Once you're done, come back out and USTR page numbers where it should be. 22. Four Column Layout: so moving on to our four column layout. Last time we left, it was at this stage we fixed the leading and the whole thing is set in fright text as six point with a nine point letting. And if we were to follow the process we went through for the two column, the next step will be to create those great fields and over there 79 lines with this layout . So I divided the page into 40 great fields that is, with nine intermediate spaces and 10 horizontal divisions. This worked out great because I didn't have to adjust the margins. I actually prefer this version better than the two column, because this pages feel more alive with the asymmetrical placements of those paragraphs and photography. Definitely dominance. More in this version, those for the titles here. This one is set in fright display pro in 17 point on both of the byline and subtitles of the same size as the body on Lee, the bylines ing I talic and the's subtitles that in small caps for the page number, I left them on the outer edges, which is a pretty standard location for it, and we don't really have much of a in the margin to place them anyway. So if you want to take a detailed look, I included thes two pdf's in the Resource Is. 23. Summary: a quick summary before we go. I hope you enjoyed this process. And if you'd like to take things a little bit further, I included a couple books and links on topography and with in design. There is a feature that I wanted to mention and didn't have time. It's the character and paragraph styles. It does help you to save a lot of time when you have a list of consistent styles set up. And if you do plan to send your design to your printer, make sure your images are converted into C M y que format. We didn't have time to talk about this, but there's another great class on SCO shirt that covers everything about it. You can find the link in The resource is, and one last thing is the content. The content here is taken from a magazine called Other Arts and I'm the one who made it and the article on the photography, a part of the magazine, which will contributed by Norris Newman. He is a photographer basting Iceland, and you can check out his work on Instagram, and I think this is pretty much everything I wanted to say. I hope to see your project here. And please feel free to leave. Any comments, feedbacks. I'll make sure to check them out. All right. Good luck and thank you.