Amy Papaelias

Type Nerd & Design Educator

Type Projects:

  • A collaborative blog by women in type and the lettering arts. 2015.
  • You Are What You Kern. Type tips and HTML demo for your web resume. updated, 2016.
  • TypeTalk: Handwriting Fonts With Something to Say. Self-censoring fonts that edit themselves through the magic of OpenType. 2005.
  • Scholarship Design:

  • What Scholarship Looks Like. An on-going collaborative research project with Jessica Barness on the design of academic journals.
  • Converge: Disciplinarities and Digital Scholarship, an AIGA Design Education Conference in Los Angeles, June 1-3, 2017.
  • Critical Making: Design and the Digital Humanities. A special issue of Visible Language journal. Co-editor with Jessica Barness. Publication: December 2015.
  • Serendip-o-matic: Let Your Sources Surprise You. A playful, web-based discovery tool that connects your research to digital sources from around the world. 2013.
  • Where are all the artists and designers?, notes from a session led at THATCampNE, 2012.
  • Speaking (highlights):

  • Led the workshops, “Micro Typography” and “Teaching Type on the Web” at Typographics, June 2021
  • Co-chair of the session, "Designing Scholarship: Communication Design and Academic Journal Publishing Practices" at the College Art Association's Annual Conference, 2020 (Chicago).
  • Presented, “Radical Scholarship: The Visual Language of Emerging Disciplines in the United States” (co-authored with Jessica Barness) at the American Printing History Association's 2019 annual conference, hosted at the University of Maryland. Read a review of the session.
  • Co-facilitated (with Jessica Barness) the conversation at Decipher: 2018 Design Educators Research Conference at University of Michigan, “Expanding the Discourse: Future Practices in Scholarly Publishing.” Read the article.
  • Spoke on the most wonderfully colorful stage at Emojicon 2018 about the history of emoji tech. Read some of my takeaways from the day here. 2018.
  • Watch my talk, Web Typography is just typography, sort of at Type@Cooper West, San Francisco Public Library, or enjoy this long read on, Facing our Fears: Teaching Type on the Web, based on it. 2017.
  • “Delicate, Light, Strong, Bold: Gendered Language Descriptors in Typefaces and Letterforms,” Cultural Histories of Typography panel, College Art Association annual conference, New York. 2017.
  • “In Your Face: Speculative Typography as Critical Design Practice” at the Type Directors Club (recorded). 2016.
  • Interviews:

  • The Write Stuff: Boost Your Brand by Blogging, How.
  • Pride, Work and Necessity of Side Projects, Design Feast.
  • Digital Stewardship, TypeThursday.
  • Women in Type: Alphabettes, FontShop.
  • Writing (selected):

  • A review of Typefesse, a butt-shaped font, for Typographica‘s Our Favorite Typefaces of 2019 (published Dec. 2020).
  • “The Author is In”, part of the Bette(r) Days series, on Alphabettes.
  • Exhibition review of “Five Hundred Years of Women’s Work: The Lisa Unger Baskin Collection” on
  • Published, “Express Yourself: How Typography Makes Us Human,” in Visions (#2), a very cool sci-fi magazine, 2019.
  • For Typographica’s Our Favorite Typefaces of 2018, I reviewed the mighty Empirica by Frere-Jones Type.
  • My essay on the Alphabettes headers is published in the book, Femme Type: Celebrating Women in the Type Industry (People of Print, 2019).
  • Interviewed designer Isabel Lea for Adobe Create Magazine on her variable font experiments bringing together language, culture, and technology.
  • For Typographica’s 2017 review annual, I selected Dover Text by Robin Mientjes, a typeface that's far more delicious than Marmite.
  • Co-authored a chapter with Aaron Knochel, published in Making Things and Drawing Boundaries (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) on place-based learning and co-design practices.
  • A favorite memory of 2017: ATypI gave me a microphone and asked me to interview speakers and attendees. I asked everyone: who would you like to have dinner with?
  • Takeaways on Teaching Type, my recap of an excellent panel discussion hosted by Design Incubation and the TDC.
  • I wrote about Variable Fonts: The Film for the Alphabettes’ Fonts from the Future, reporting from the 22nd century.
  • Older stuff

    An archive of things from years’ past.

    Get In Touch:

    @fontnerd | hello [at] amypapaelias [dot] com


    Hello! I'm Amy. I am an Associate Professor of Graphic Design at the State University of New York at New Paltz, teaching courses in web and interaction design, as well as 2D design and visual communication. I received my MFA in Intermedia Design from SUNY New Paltz and my Bachelor of Art in English Cultural Studies from McGill University.

    Presentations about my research and design pedagogy include: Type@Cooper West, San Francisco, the Type Directors Club, TypeCon, the AIGA Design Educators Conferences, Theorizing the Web, among others.

    I have participated in several collaborative digital scholarship / humanities initiatives, including serving on the organizing committee of the AIGA Design Education Conference, Converge: Disciplinarities and Digital Scholarship (2017), and One Week | One Tool, an NEH-funded Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities (2013). Jessica Barness and I received the 2017 Design Incubation Communication Design Education Award in Published Research for our special issue of Visible Language (49.3).

    I am a member of the Type Directors Club and a founding member of Alphabettes.


    This site was hand-cobbled together with 💖 and currently uses Adelle Sans for the headlines and Eskorte for the body text.