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The Extensis Community Blog


As active members of the larger font geek community, we are able to identify several defining qualities that set us apart from the rest of the world. One of the most prominent: we’re opinionated. (Just check out the #WorstFontsEver campaign—don’t forget to read the comments).

We’re enmeshed in a professional creative community that is ever changing, and wholly unafraid to tread into unknown territory. We thrive off of the energy that our peers, creative heroes, and cohorts bring to the table every day, and so, as a small ode to those opinions that matter most to us, we created the Type Trends Survey, which you can download for free.

3 Type Trends That Made Us Swoon

 

Sampling from the brains of those whose work lives in graphic design, print, manufacturing, advertising, branding, and education realms, we put a finger to the pulse of contemporary typographic trends, and got insight into where we’re headed.

 

Can you feel the typographical love?

One of our favorite pages in the report is page 9—“Most Loved & Hated”. Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, we’re zooming in on the trends that got the most praise.

 

Sweet for Slab Serifs

Not surprisingly, Slab Serifs come out on top with 30% of those surveyed swiping right. Chen Design Associates’ rebrand of Project Juice is a stellar example of how a slab serif can outshine a solid-but-bland sans serif.

3 Type Trends That Make Us Swoon

 

Eye on the Icon

Another star of the show among designers is the icon. These endlessly useful design nuggets are the unsung heroes of the type world. Font Awesome provides infinitely scalable vector icons that can be customized by size, color and more. Plus, they are free for commercial use. Good on ya, Dave Gandy.

Craig Ward felt that the world of non-lettered type deserved an organic twist. In collaboration with pioneering biochemist and experimental photographer Linden Gledhill, Craig Ward created Fe203 Glyphs, a unique, ornamental type system and an accompanying set of one-of-a-kind letterpress prints. We hope for a type world in which design elements like Fe203 are available as scalable vectors and become as useful as the icons from Font Awesome.

The project was rightfully honored (as was Project Juice and the Sudtipos example below) in the Communication Arts Typography Annual. “Fe2O3 Glyphs transcends the traditional role of a typeface,” Ward explains, “to provide a consistent and coherent platform for communication—and completely inverts it. The typically fastidious design of the glyphs is given over to an evolving, unrepeatable organic process and the ‘grid’ at its heart is replaced by conflicting magnetic field lines.”

 

Craving more Curly Script

Curly Script cut through the scrum to assert itself as a respected contemporary type trend. Curly Script fonts boldly and professionally beautify our typographic world, and we were pleased to find that creative professionals agree. We find this example from Argentinian Sudtipos a stellar example.

3 Type Trends That Make Us Swoon

 

Download the Type Trends Survey to sink your teeth into the rest of the design nuggets and insight. And for those among us that are of the Anti-Valentines persuasion, there’s also a healthy dose of trends designers hate littered among the mushy feelings, along with a bunch of crap talk about Art Nouveau fonts and more.

Talk to us about Type Trends on Twitter @extensis and up your daily dose of geeky font love on Instagram and Pinterest.

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Building on the release Portfolio 2016, our digital asset management system that helps companies efficiently manage, organize and utilize digital assets, we have a new update that puts your brand front and center.

If your company needs to share files outside of the team or organization, Portfolio offers a module – Portfolio NetPublish – which makes it quick and easy for anyone to build sites for securely sharing assets online.

With our latest update, Portfolio NetPublish sites can be highly customized to match your company’s brand, presenting digital assets from a portal with your organization’s look and feel. Customers can build custom NetPublish themes and assign them to any site on the server. Simply build it once, and anyone can use it.

To see this in action, I’ve created a quick video demo. To see what else is new in Portfolio 2016, roll on over to our product page.

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It’s no secret that there’s a stereotypical disjunction between die-hard American football fans and graphic designers. That’s just the type of human variety that keeps the world turning. What we didn’t realize, however, is this disjunction is more like a gaping, massive chasm when it comes to Super Bowl logos.

We don’t at all mean to offend any designer that has ever tread near a football field. We just intend to raise a pointed eyebrow at those responsible for the Super Bowl logos over the years—and we do this by first dissecting the makings of a good logo, or rather an effective logo.

  1. It’s unique
  2. It’s timeless
  3. It’s appropriate
  4. It’s simple
  5. It’s functional

It would be a race to the bottom if these logos were scoring touchdowns based on typography and graphic design merit.

Amidst the joking and poking fun, however, a welcome reprieve came with our discovery of the evolution of the AFC, NFC and NFL logos over the years. After 40 years, updates were made to all three not more than a decade ago.

 

The Evolution of the AFC, NFC, & NFL Logos

The History of Crappy Super Bowl Logos
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If you’re living in the same digitized world as we are, “there’s an app for that,” is a jest that you hear on the daily. There’s a strong strain of truth to it — as evident by the numerous apps that remind us to get up and move throughout the day, the ones that score us the cheapest plane tickets, and the ones that let us video chat with friends around the world.

The same holds true for the software that streamlines our office processes, connects us with our coworkers, and organizes digital files in ways that save loads of time, money, and heaps of headaches. *Ahem, ahem Extensis Portfolio*

DAM ROI Calculator: Save with Digital Asset Management

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The Golden Globes are upon us! This American accolade is known for being a precursor to the Oscars and this year, the Hollywood Foreign Press’ picks are diverse and surprising—making for a murky season.

Confession: surveying the nominees, and waiting for winner announcements is much less interesting to us than noting logo design, title screens, poster design, typography treatments, creative inspiration and who the creators are. Maybe we’re still a bit offended that a film that won Best Drama Motion Picture used Papyrus as its primary font (cough, Avatar, cough).

Either way, we’ve put each of the 2016 nominees in our version of the hot seat, and have doled out fake awards to honor excellence in typography and graphic design.

The Typography & Design Award Goes To…

Before we got to any of this year’s nominees, we dissected the Golden Globe logo. Avant Garde is a font family based on the logo font used for the Avant Garde magazine, which was originally designed by Herb Lubalin. It was purportedly created to capture “the advanced, the innovative, and the creative”—and proved a natural choice for an awards event that honors the same things. We think it’s got some weird imbalance. What are your thoughts?

Now on to the main event.

 

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