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Creative Activities
Create a Decorative Drop Cap

Many Renaissance books are interactive and encourage the reader to add their own notes. In some cases, the printer would leave a large space at a new paragraph for the reader to illustrate their own decorative drop cap. 

In this activity, draw and colour your own decorative drop cap.

Firstly, please download the Create a Decorative Drop Cap PDF below. This download resource features a selection of texts where a space is left empty for you to draw within. The first letter for each text is indicated in miniature for you to get started. Have a look at the Renaissance Type Alphabets and explore the Renaissance books in some of our libraries to get more of an idea of style.

But be expressive, think of your own styles and be bold and colourful!

Here's what you'll need

Download the Create a Decorative Drop Cap resource and refer to the Renaissance Type Alphabets.

Create a Decorative Drop Cap

Fell Type


Please share your work on Twitter and Instagram with @archiveunlocked and include the hashtag #UTACreativeActivities

No access to a printer at home?

No problem! If you have access to Photoshop software, try this: open the Decorative Drop Cap PDF and select a page with your chosen text. Create the required letterform using your selected typeface, or sketch using the pen tool. Refer to the Renaissance Type Alphabets and the Libraries section of the site for inspiration.

If you do not have access to Photoshop, display the images on your screen and sketch your letterforms.

Create a Decorative Drop Cap

Darren Leader