Rick Cusick has worked at Hallmark in Kansas City for more than 40 years in various capacities including: lettering artist, book designer, package designer and lettering studio manager. As Font Consultant, he presently directs font design and development for the company.
He was born in Stockton, California, where he studied calligraphy with James Lewis at San Joaquin Delta College, and designed illuminated signs at Ad/Art, Inc., which at the time provided much of the casino work in Las Vegas, Reno and Lake Tahoe. He also studied lettering with Mortimer Leach at Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles.
A signiﬁcant part of Cusick’s education in lettering and type came from his extensive correspondence with calligraphers of an older generation, resulting in his association with TBW Books as a design and editorial consultant, and in the publication of With Respect...to RFD, a festschrift for designer and calligrapher, Raymond F. DaBoll, Straight Impressions, essays and calligraphy by the inﬂuential teacher from Reed College, Lloyd J. Reynolds, and The Proverbial Bestiary, a collaboration with Warren Chappell featuring Chappell’s drawings and Cusick’s calligraphy. He is the author of What Our Lettering Needs: The Contribution of Hermann Zapf to Calligraphy and Type Design at Hallmark Cards, published by RIT Cary Graphic Arts Press in 2011.
As the proprietor of Nyx Editions, Cusick has produced small publications of personal interest including: OK? It’s All Yours: Informal Recollections of Arnold Bank, Type*fa*cetious, featuring the type designs of Jill Bell, a version of Mark Twain’s The War Prayer, and The Ink & Paper, by Richie Tankersley Cusick, based on an idea by Leonardo da Vinci.
He art directed Letter Arts Review for ten years and taught Editorial & Publication Design, and Typography, at the University of Kansas, for six years. His work has appeared in numerous international publications and exhibitions. “Quiet Passion,” a traveling retrospective of his lettering and design, ﬁrst appeared at the San Francisco Public Library in 1995.
Cusick is a member of American Printing History Association, American Institute of Graphic Arts, the Type Directors Club, Association Typographique Internationale, and an honorary member of Bund Deutscher Buchküenstler.