Jessie Headrick, an alumna of Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Design (BDes ’18), recently launched a website dedicated to the work of Myrna Rosen, noted calligrapher and Adjunct Professor at the School of Design.
“After a couple of semesters attending Myrna's Calligraphy class, I realized how incredible Myrna’s career was as a calligrapher and as a mother,” said Jessie who currently works as a Product Designer with Palantir Technologies. “I discovered she had not undertaken any formal effort to document all of her work, and I knew how important it is to archive her contributions to this field."
Rosen has been a contributor to Calligraphy Review magazine, she has published and exhibited nationally and internationally, and has served as a faculty member and advisor to more than a dozen International Lettering Arts conferences. Rosen is also the founding and office-holding member of the Calligraphy Guild of Pittsburgh.
“Myrna's Calligraphy is playful, experimental, full of color, and precision,” added Jessie. “More than the quality, Myrna's pieces incorporate years of careful study under one of the most well-known calligrapher in the world, Arnold Bank. What is more, these pieces were often products of the 'late hours', after she had made dinner and put all the children to bed.
“Myrna truly lived both lives, mother and calligrapher, in a time when this was not common or easy.“
For Jessie, as a designer, the lessons of calligraphy not only teach history and craft, but the importance of the delivery of communication.
“The more understanding a designer has of the history of type, the better they may leverage the written word,” said Jessie. “Calligraphy is an incredibly careful and exacting practice that demands more patience than our modern day tools.
“I hope people will come away from this website with a better appreciation of the type they see in the world around them. Through viewing and searching Myrna's work I want people to experience the history of type and the mastery of her craft. Perhaps most importantly, I hope people will appreciate the remarkable life and work of Myrna Rosen.”