Laura Franz headshot

Laura Franz

Professor / Chairperson

Art & Design




College of Visual & Performing Arts 349A


1997Carnegie Mellon UniversityMDes
1991Western Michigan UniversityBFA


  • Typography (print, web, screen, typeface design)
  • Graphic Design History
  • Design Studio (In-house Internships)
  • Branding and Identity
  • Web Design




Research Activities

  • RWD (Responsive Web Design) Typography. RWD Summit, 2015. Online (presentation). March 2015
  • Finding, Testing, and Using Web Fonts. How Interactive Conference East, Washington, D.C. (presentation). September, 2012
  • How to Choose and Use Web Fonts (video series). Publisher: July 2012
  • Typographic Web Design: How to Think Like a Typographer in HTML and CSS (Book). Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. October 2011
  • Typography For Web Designers (video series). Publisher: July 2011


Research Interests

  • Web Typography: traditional typographic practice and theories applied to web typography
  • (TL:DR) Redefining Reading: the history and mechanics of reading to better understand how and why people read.
  • Typefaces of New Bedford: the history of a place, explored through ephemeral letters and words

Select publications

Laura Franz (2014).
Size Matters: Balancing Line Length and Font Size in Responsive Web Design
Smashing Magazine. Publisher: Smashing Media GmbH.

Laura Franz (2013).
Dear Web Font Providers
Smashing Magazine. Publisher: Smashing Media GmbH.

Laura Franz (2013).
Setting Weights and Styles With The @font-face Declaration
Smashing Magazine. Publisher: Smashing Media GmbH.


Inspired by the intersection of tradition and technology, Laura is interested in how we can use history and theory from established media to inform our work in new media. She researches, writes, and presents papers on typography for the web, how and why people read, and the history and context of graphic design.

This is a webpage
Sabbatical work
NB4 Jimmy
historic type
gwf homepage presents
Transition and Technology

External links

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