By Egotist / /
Independent type foundry XYZ Type (base in Saint Louis, Missouri) has released Study, a new serif type family designed by Jesse Ragan. Study is based on a typeface concept rendered by Rudolph Ruzicka in his book Studies in Type Design (1968), but never previously completed as a functioning font.
Over several years, Ragan has extensively researched the Czech-American designer and illustrator’s body of work, including archives of unpublished drawings and correspondence. Ragan explains, “I approached Study as the culmination of a project Ruzicka started, adapting it as he would have to modern typography and technology. Since I was working from only a limited hand-painted alphabet, taking a deep dive into his life and work helped me find his authentic voice.” Ruzicka’s signature lettering style—lively, rustic, and warm—demonstrates his affinity for Czech lettering and his expertise in wood engraving. His letterforms merge calligraphic details with typographic structure, maintaining constant tension between soft outer shapes and angular counterforms.
In its final digital form, Study is a family of twelve font styles, each equipped with small capitals, ligatures, fractions, and four kinds of numerals. The fonts are optimized for use in print and on screen, from large sizes down to paragraph text settings.
Development of the typeface was partially underwritten by Dartmouth College, who commissioned a proprietary customized version of Study dubbed “Dartmouth Ruzicka.” The typeface debuted in January 2018 as part of Dartmouth’s new visual identity, designed by Original Champions of Design. These letterforms provide a link to the institution’s heritage, as Ruzicka worked closely with the university on several prominent lettering projects.
On the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Studies in Type Design, Study is now publicly available for desktop, web, and app use, directly from xyztype.com, and from the vendors Type Network and Fontstand.
XYZ Type is the independent type foundry jointly owned and operated by typeface designers Ben Kiel (St. Louis, Missouri) and Jesse Ragan (Brooklyn, New York).
Study at XYZ Type: https://xyztype.com/fonts/study
Study at Type Network: https://store.typenetwork.com/foundry/xyz/fonts/study
Study at Fontstand: https://fontstand.com/fonts/study
OCD Agency’s Dartmouth identity: http://originalchampionsofdesign.com/dartmouth/
Studies in Type Design (Library of Congress): https://lccn.loc.gov/68006737