April is National Poetry Month!
This month we’ll be paying homage to some of our favorite poems in the typographic treatments we love. Typography and poetry can work hand-in-hand to express the emotions reflected in poetry.
To kick things off, please enjoy this fragment of a well-known classic by T.S. Eliot, as well as an excerpt from ‘Spring,’ by Edna St. Vincent Millay
Winter is over now and with it comes the rain. This is the inspiration behind our interpretation of this poem by T.S. Eliot. Colorful tones in the spring rain breathe life to the typography as it did to the lilacs mentioned in the poem.
As April arrives, so does spring; a warmer change of scenery to the harsh winter. In our interpretation of this excerpt from Edna St. Vincent Millay’s Spring, we’re reminded that spring flowers burst enthusiastically onto the scene.
“THE SECRET OF TYPE IS THAT IT SPEAKS.” – French Poet Paul Claudel
Ever noticed how there’s something about emboldened Helvetica that makes you immediately shut your mouth and pay attention like a berated schoolchild? Or how Comic Sans makes your cheeks burn in mild embarrassment like your goofy and slightly tipsy uncle does when giving a toast at a dinner party?
Seasoned graphic designers and typographers are rolling their eyes as they read this, but from the perspective of an observer with no formal education on the matter, misused type is akin to someone talking on the phone in the next bathroom stall—impossible to ignore and mildly offensive.
The bare bones of it: identifying the ‘mood,’ the ‘flavor,’ or ‘feeling’ of a typeface starts with three things: classification, letter structure, and context. By no means is this a comprehensive list, and a well-educated graphic designer is keeper of sophisticated, nuanced insight into type choice, that’s what makes her a pro!
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.
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.
“When typography is on point, words become images.”
― Shawn Lukas
Much has been going on with typography in our world lately. We released our 2015 Type Trends survey and also made some typography predictions for 2016 with some help from our friends Laura Worthing and Sara Hyndman.
One of our absolute favorite things to do is work with talented graphic designers from around the globe to inspire your type. Not only do we have a robust collection on our Fontspiration Pinterest board, but we also feed these inspirational pieces into the Fontspiration panel within Suitcase Fusion, as well as in our free Fontspiration app for iPhone.
Without further ado, we present our most recent set of custom-made Fontpirations. These pieces feature type by Rvq Type Foundry, Type Faith Fonts, Mika Melvas Type Studio, Letterhead Fonts, Lost Type Co-Op, DSType Foundry, and House Industries. Check ’em out.
Foundry: RVQ Type Foundry
Artist: Kristina Cancelmi
Inspiration: 2015 marks the 21st Annual Santacon celebration. Background Santas are made from the letterforms for ultimate coolness!
It’s that time of year (again; whoa, too fast!). We’re perfecting the kerning on 2015, adding tittles and cleaning up crossbars. As per usual, looking back has us reeling. All that was accomplished by our prolific and inspiring design community in 2015 is quite amazing.
To be enmeshed in a professional group that is continually changing and unafraid to tread into new territory is something that gets us out of bed each morning. This blog serves as an ode to font trends of 2015, and predictions from some of the best and most influential designers for where we’re headed in 2016.
If you’d like a thorough look at what was trending (and what was getting dissed) in 2015, take a peek at our Typographic Trends Survey. We’ll just touch on the highlights below.
Tis’ the season for rushed client deadlines and what seems like one thousand requests to “make the logo bigger.” And as per usual, we feel stuck in a never-ending torrent of misused comic sans (seriously, when will people ever learn?)
Somewhere in the middle of it all we realize what’s truly important about what we do as designers. We find that we’re left with a resounding thankfulness for the joy that beautiful typefaces bring to our designerly worlds.
As we prep our Thanksgiving table with custom name cards and our attempts to mimic Casey Ligon’s delicious foodie hand lettering, we do our best to remember the reason for the season: giving thanks!
Our candidates are living in the wake of a political branding revolution. Most everyone is attempting to emulate the powerful simplicity of Obama’s brand strategy after he changed the game forever. Sadly, it seems like no one really hit the mark this time around.
Confession: We’re huge type nerds.
It’s an incredible phenomenon to watch the rest of the world as it begins to catch up to the font-centric universe we inhabit. Typography is trending.
In most disciplines, you need to know the rules before you break them. Typography is no different. There are rules, and following them correctly results in a clean, professional appearance. Breaking them deliberately and correctly can also have nice results, making your type unique and maybe even out-of-the-box brilliant.
To help designers and developers put their best foot forward, we’re happy to present “Tips for Better Typography,” where we’ll cover some basic rules of typography and related tips to help you set type in a way that’s professional and beautiful. Below, we’ll cover some tips and guidelines around line measure, line-height, kerning and special characters.
The width of a body of type, or line length, is also known as the measure. In content-heavy design especially, you don’t want to make your lines of copy too long; it can cause eye fatigue and make the reader lose interest. A good rule of thumb is to limit lines of copy to around 65 characters per line, including space and punctuation. Another good rule of thumb is to increase your leading in proportion to the measure.
As a slightly less than metrosexual guy, I believe there are three key elements a man needs for his overall presentation: a good haircut, a decent watch, and nice shoes. Of course clothes and grooming matter, but these three items are key in presenting ourselves in a way that’s polished, professional—and, let’s face it—pretty.
Let’s extend that analogy to graphic design. There are a few key elements that define a brand, most notably logo, positioning, editorial voice, design approach, and color. Once that’s been established, we’re all ready to go out into the world in the form of a site launch. Right?