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Creative Activities
Create a Type Composition Within a Shape

There are many inventive type compositions to be discovered in Renaissance books.

Passages of text often fill unexpected shapes to create a decorative page. For this activity, think about a message which you want to compose. It could be a quotation, a brief extract from your favourite book, or a song lyric.

Firstly, download the Type Shapes PDF and take a look at the potential containers for your composition. Then select your Renaissance Type Alphabet, download and print. Cut out individual letters from your Alphabet (have fun with various type sizes), glue into position and fill your chosen shape.

Here's what you'll need

Download the Type Shapes resource and select your typeface.

Type Shapes

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 Type Shapes PDF and select a page with your chosen shape. In a separate tab, open the Type Alphabet PDF and select a page with your chosen type size. Select the individual letters that you require, crop, copy and paste into your chosen type shape. Repeat that action to compose your message.

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

Create a Type Composition Within a Shape

Darren Leader