Experimental Typography


One of the main reasons for starting this blog was to document my own personal design projects and Mayaruler 1 is such a project. This project started when I was at Salford University studying my degree, we were invited to submit experimental typography ideas to Neville Brody’s experimental type series of FUSE fonts.

FUSE 15 was to be themed on cities and I along with three other students were lucky enough to have ours published.


Mayaruler 1 is based on Mayan writing system that has been termed ‘glyphic cartouche’, which is the equivalent to the words and sentences of a modern language. Maya cartouches include at least three to four glyphs and as many as fifty in some instances.

They are very intricate and are used for story telling or highlighting the importance of objects and buildings.

Interestingly there is no Maya alphabet.

However on finding the image below in a National Geographic magazine I decided to base my FUSE project on making my very own maya alphabet.


I very much wanted to update the glyphs visual appearance and make them almost little computer symbols (there has always been that mysterious link between ancient civilisations and aliens which is quite fascinating) so each glyph was constructed around a set grid and a tight set of rules.


The Maya were a very artistic and colourful race, they built beautiful cities with rich vibrant colours in clothing, buildings and art and this along with the work of Eduardo Palozzi inspired the screenprinted poster below.


I will be posting more on Mayaruler 1 and it’s FUSE connections. I also hope to start Mayaruler 2 this year and will document it’s developments in this blog.

Submit a comment