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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 enmFont Trends & Predictions for the New Yeareshed 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.

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Whether it’s Typography Tuesday or Favorite Font Friday, we’re with you on the constant hunt for typographic inspiration. That’s why we keep a constant flow of stand out examples streaming through our professional font manager, Suitcase Fusion (and Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter).

We released Suitcase Fusion™ 6 in the autumn to help you make the most of precious creative time and explore and organize your entire font collection in a single, searchable location.

We created Fontspiration over a year ago as your crystal ball to look into the font future, past and present:

  • Locate new and interesting fonts for your creative work
  • See what other creative pros are using in real-world projects
  • Explore the boundaries of lettering, typography and fonts in design
  • Dig into what professionals from bygone eras have learned about type

The Fontspiration continues—Check out some seasonally-inspired design! Our March pieces feature type by Delve Fonts, Mostar Design, Mahti Type Studio and Cultivated Mind. Take a gander.

Keep Your Design Inspired With New Fontspiration; Mahti Type Studio

Foundry: Mahti Type Studio
Typeface: Delisia Regular
Artist: Blue Collar Agency, designed by Jaime Singer.
Inspiration: Vivid colors from the morning sunrise combined with your AM routine of grinding beans and drinking joe.

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Thomas Phinney and I were in the Windy City this last Saturday along with AIGA Chicago to conduct a (sold out) web font workshop. The idea for the workshop was simple: get a bunch of designers and their laptops into a classroom, and walk them through the process of using real web fonts on a website.

Before the hands-on part of the workshop, Thomas also primed the class on interesting and useful topics related to web fonts such as the history of typography on the web, advanced OpenType and CSS3 features, and how to choose fonts and set type.

My favorite part of Thomas’s presentation was when he demoed a self-censoring font: type in a swear word and the font automatically “translates” the curse into something more socially acceptable.

As for Tori R. from Chicago, I’m guessing her favorite part was when she won an iPad Mini (congrats Tori!)

A big thanks goes to AIGA Chicago and Artisian Talent for helping put on the event, as well as Starter League (formerly known as Code Academy) who hooked us up with classroom space at 1851—a hip co-working center for digital startups.

Are you interested in a web font workshop in your city? If so, let us know in the comments section below.

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We had an amazing time at the Technology for Marketing & Advertising event in London a couple of weeks ago. It was our third year attending and we were happy to meet many of you who are as mad about fonts and DAM as we are!

Davin Kluttz, our Senior Product Manager came all the way from Extensis HQ in the US to present two amazingly well received seminars (seriously, they were queuing out the door!) for us.

The first one was “Classy, Clowny or Crude? How your site’s typography affects your brand”, which illustrates how web typography affects your website, and how you can select and implement web typography that is just right for the job. So many people these days think it’s OK to use Comic Sans on their websites. This may come as a shock, but it just doesn’t cut the mustard! Davin illustrated this by showing how some iconic brands would look if their logos were in this font (Chanel, Coca-Cola, Star Wars) which got several laughs from the crowd. To drive the point home, he also showed us several examples of “classy”, “clowny” and “crude” web typography, which gave the audience a feel for the direction in which they should be taking their sites.

The second one was entitled “What does this DAM thing do?”  Ever find yourself pulling your hair out trying to locate an image in a sea of thousands? Don’t you think it would be nice to preview a video on your iPad without a special plug-in? Or even just have access to all your digital content on the go, so you are able to act fast if a client unexpectedly throws a “let’s see it now” lasso around your neck? Well Extensis has a solution for all of these problems  and it was all nicely wrapped up in this presentation, which not only explained what an “asset” is, but also demonstrated how to leverage digital asset management solutions to find, locate, archive and access files, regardless of location.

If you couldn’t make it to the show, couldn’t get in to the theatre or would simply like to see what we had to say on web typography and digital asset management, we have very kindly provided the slides from both presentations below!

Enjoy! If you have any feedback, please let us know – we’d love to hear from you.

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I’m happy to announce that Extensis and WebINK is sponsoring the Webvisionary Awards at the upcoming WebVisions 2012 Conference in Portland, Oregon. It’s a great way to get your quality web design work noticed.

The prize is not only the notoriety and bragging rights that come with the award, but each winner also gets a snazzy robot suitable for prominent display in any office.

WebVisionary Awards

The Webvisionary Awards is in its fifth year and draws some amazing talent for the competition. We’re especially interested in the award titled “Fantastic Typographic,” that honors the best use of fonts as a key element of the design (with bonus points for web font technology).

You can submit published, personal or prototype projects created between March 1, 2011 to April 1, 2012. Entry fees for the competition are $25 per project and the deadline for submissions is 5:00p.m. Pacific Standard Time on Friday, April 20, 2012.

Award winners will be named at the Webvisionary Awards Show at the Fez Ballroom at 316 Southwest 11th Avenue in downtown Portland on Friday, May 18, 2012.

Enter your site today!

For more information on WebVisions 2012 or to register, visit

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Have a website design that you think kicks all others to the curb? Get all of the accolades, high-fives and awards that you deserve by submitting your for consideration in the Webvisionary awards!

This is a great competition, and we’re happy to sponsor the awards this year.

Submit your work here:

Best of luck to you and your designs!

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Please join us for a one-day training conference in Boston for creative professionals working with Adobe® Dreamweaver®.

We’ll be featuring WebINK and showing how using real fonts brings new creative freedom to the Web. Join us for a web font presentation over lunch to see the latest in font management technology for all of your web design needs.

  • Date: Wednesday, September 1, 2010
  • Location: Bunker Hill Community College, Charlestown Campus, Boston, MA
  • Font Management Lunch Presentation at MOGO Media Boston Dreamweaver Seminar
  • For more information visit: MOGO Media

About the seminar:
For only $149, attendees will spend the day learning how to be more effective and productive while working with Adobe Dreamweaver and will receive online access to a digital recording of the seminar at no additional charge. Attendees will walk away with valuable tips, tricks, and techniques for getting the most out of their Adobe software.

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Nick Shinn is a talented British emigre who has lived in Toronto, Canada since 1976. His typefaces are a fixture of the typographic scene, and include custom designs for the Toronto Globe & Mail and Maclean’s magazine, two of Canada’s best-known publications.

WebINK is this week adding fifty of Nick’s fonts, comprising seven families: Beaufort, Duffy Script, Figgins Sans, Paradigm, Pratt, Scotch Modern and Softmachine. Figgins Sans and Scotch Modern also come in “LCG” variants, standing for “Latin, Greek and Cyrillic,” which is a whole heck of a lot of language support.

One of the things that has long impressed me about Nick’s work is that it spans such a wide range from relatively traditional sans and serif text faces (most of the aforementioned) to trendy modern display work such as Softmachine. Plus, his stuff gets used for the coolest T-shirt slogans. So we’re all happy to have these additional great typefaces on board with WebINK!

Nick and I haven’t always agreed on everything. He hates the fact that companies like Adobe, Apple, Corel and Microsoft bundle so many good fonts with operating systems and applications, because he thinks it depresses the retail font licensing market. An argument can be made here that this bundling has the accused pernicious effect in two ways: first, supplying most non-professional users with enough fonts that they never need to buy any, and second, decreasing the perceived value of fonts by virtue of them being “free” with operating systems and applications. Having been responsible for such bundling at Adobe, I was once a representative of an “evil empire” from Nick’s POV.

I agree that these are real consequences of font bundling with applications. I just don’t see it as immoral, and I believe the negative effects on the type industry are counterbalanced by the benefits to the end users who end up with a bunch of good fonts. Of course, you can still debate whether this increases the variety of fonts in use (without the bundled fonts, people wouldn’t use as many) or decreases it (without the bundled fonts, people would license a wider variety of fonts).

The same issue has played out a bit differently in the Web space. There are a smaller number of the traditional “web safe fonts” (fonts not only bundled, but across operating systems) and no particularly good alternative until recently. So we’ve ended up with bland, homogeneous web design, at least from a typeface-choice perspective. That’s why I’m so glad to be part of the WebINK movement to change all that!

Oh, and me and Nick? Well, even if we disagreed about the morality of font bundling, we both love fonts and typography and want good things to happen. We kind of buried the hatchet five years ago today, when the two of us and Adam Twardoch collaborated on a half-day font dev workshop at TypeCon 2005 in New York, in which we taught attendees how to do cool things building contextual alternates into an OpenType script font, a la Bickham Script or Zapfino. And now we’re teaming up again on something else we can both agree on: a bigger variety of fonts one can use on web sites is a great thing for web designers and typography.

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We’re throwing another cocktail party, and you’re invited!

This July, we’ll be hosting a party to kick off the web design conference An Event Apart. It’s a great conference where you can learn a ton about new CSS techniques, and gain inspiration for your creative work.

If you’re attending the conference, or are an Extensis customer in the Minneapolis area, we’d love to have you join us.

Sunday, July 25th
5:00 – 7:00 PM
89 South 10th Street
Minneapolis, MN

We will also be showing off our new web font service, WebINK, at the party. So if you’ve got a hankerin’ for something other than Helvetica on your website, come check it out!

Please RSVP so that we know how many people to expect.

Hope to see you there!