Getting Creative With Typography

ImageHello again my fellow blog readers and colleagues. This week’s blog I will be discussing all about the world of creative typography (chapter 4 in the book, Communications Today,4th Edition) & what we need to know in regard to using creative typography in graphic design. So, without further interruption, here’s my newest blog, I hope that all of you enjoy.

The first thing that caught my eye through my personal reading of chapter 4 was the introductory quote from Hal Curtis, Creative Director of Wieden + Kennedy, you can find this quote on page 106. Mr. Curtis’s quote, along with Jan Tischichold’s point of view,and Jim Parkinson’s testimony on creative typography demonstrates how important it is to appreciate typographical influences of the past to help us better understand creative typography today & how this understanding will greatly help us in each of own personal journeys in the field of graphic design.

The second thing that caught my eye in my personal reading of this chapter was on pages 108-109, where it stresses the importance of using creativity wisely and the hard work & effort that it really takes to choose the perfect typeface(s) for each project. According to our authors of our book,creativity involves:

  • Research

  • Great attention to detail

  • Experimentation

  • Thinking outside the box

  • Risk-Taking

  • Perspiration

These tips not only are required to know by not just choosing the right typeface or typefaces in every project that you do, but with every aspect of every project that you do. I ask that each and everyone of you will keep that in mind with every project that you do, yeah some projects may take longer & be harder than other projects, but if you do not give up and put in the hard work & time that it takes to do a project from start to finish, the better graphic designers that we will be in the long run.

The third thing that caught my eye through my personal reading was on page 108, how important it is that the typeface or typefaces that you use in each and every project are not only appropriate for that project,but that are readable as well. According to the authors of the book, type should be chosen and arranged to achieve maximum readability. Also on pages 108-109,I learned that:

  • The typeface that you use for each project should suggest the voice of the message.

  • The typeface that you use must catch the audience’s attention.

  • The typeface that you use may establish identification.

  • The typeface that you use must be properly aligned & used.

  • Type can communicate through it’s own voice,volume,and sensitivity.

  • Improper typeface to a message = message epic fail!

Bottom line, be careful what typefaces that you use and how you use them! It could make your final identity sink or swim.

Through my personal reading of this chapter, I also found out some more crucial rules of thumb in regard to using creative typography on pages 112-126. I am going to simplify these important points so that each and everyone of you will understand without having to read a lot of text at the same time. So here is what I have learned through my personal reading of the remainder of Chapter 4:

  • Logos must have a large enough typeface size that is to be seen with everyone.

  • If the image or illustration lacks emphasis in the concept, the type that you use must become the main emphasis to replace the lack of emphasis on the image or illustration.

  • Choose the size of your headline type wisely.

  • Choose your typeface to tailor your target audience.

  • It is a graphic design no-no to hyphenate display type.

  • Examine your line breaks closely.

  • Adjusting letter and word spacing usually involves meticulous kerning & control.

  • Rebus design is the popular trend in the world of graphic design today.

  • Only use all-caps when you absolutely need to. Do not go overboard using all-caps.

  • Always weigh your words carefully.

  • Light weight font=subtle,gentle. Heavy weight font=Yelling, of high importance.

  • Italics are considered stylish because of its beauty & eloquence.

  • The baroque approach to type is Swash or Swash buckle style.

  • Mixing typefaces are a difficult task. Be careful what typefaces that you mix together!

  • It is recommended that you do not use no more than 3 different typefaces per project.

  • The reliable dropped initial letter is one of the oldest and most effective ways to break up a copy-heavy page.

  • Using a tint block or screened area at 20 percent opacity offers variety to a story or sidebar.

  • Extra leading between the paragraphs of a page helps brighten a page.

  • Crossing heads are invaluable.

  • Using subheads with a contrasting face/boldface or using a larger font type can help break up the gray of a page.

  • Bullets,rules,dingbats,and other various graphic embellishments can assist in opening up a copy-heavy page, but use them cautiously. Using too many of them can make a page look amateurish or unprofessional.

  • It is okay to use shorter paragraphs to help open up a copy-heavy page.

  • It is okay to use crossing heads or pull-quotes to break up a copy-heavy page.

  • The white space is a smart designers life saver.

Bottom line: all of these bullet points that I have typed above are very helpful advice for all of us in regard to typography in this industry.

In conclusion, I have learned so much crucial & helpful information about how I should use typography. I hope this and each and everyone of my summaries that I type up for each of you help you,as well to give you a great read. Please feel free to answer in your own terms to the 2 discussion questions that I will leave on the bottom of this blog. Until next blog my fellow blog readers and colleagues, have a blessed and wonderful day!

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why is it so important to break up a copy-heavy page?

  2. If you were doing a wedding invitation, what typefaces would you use and why?


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