Itching to crack out a poster for your friends or event using Impact, Comic Sans or any font you found ready in your PC’s set? Are you a budding designer, ready to unleash Gotham unto the world in another of your new branding projects because you’re unsure which other font is going to look good?
Put down that mouse before you hurt yourself! This is an intervention.
Typefaces surround us everywhere; from the typical spaces, you expect like magazines, posters and billboards to our phones, product packaging, cars, road signs and so much more. The type they use is usually specifically chosen to fulfil its mission; to get the message across. But as typeface families have evolved, choosing the right typeface to use is increasingly more challenging . NB. That doesn’t mean you should pick the first one you like, or find.
Here are 4 dating rules we live by when it comes to typography.
What’s my type?
There are more or less, 7 types of typefaces shown below. Serifs are great for chunks of text because it’s easier to read through, especially for long books. But if you’ve noticed, a lot of websites, mobile applications and your own phone usually use sans-serif typefaces like Roboto and Helvetica Neue. That’s because at small sizes, they’re more readable and scale better than serifs.
Where are you taking it?
Maybe it’s a FUN-eral. Nope. Sorry.
Picking the right fonts to use depends on what you’re going to produce, the target audience and where is it going to be seen. Designs can easily take a disastrous turn just because the typeface is used badly, or furthermore, not right for the occasion.
For example, condensed fonts are great for horror or a serious tone, but then hand drawn typefaces are more light-hearted. Geometric and humanist are suitable for corporate use due to their clean look, but then rounded fonts are friendly in nature, and chunky heavy fonts are better for action or making a statement.
A typeface consists of fonts; different weights such as bold, italic, regular, condensed and more. If you’ve got a lot of content with different hierarchies (for example, poster title, date, contact information), then think about using two fonts to complement each other. Opposites attract, they say. Well, so does type!
Find the right place.
Fonts can be downloaded from various places; Typekit, my fonts, dafont, fontsquirrel, Google fonts, just ask your friendly neighbourhood Google.