fonts.com blog
Archive for July, 2012

by Ryan Arruda

Fonts.com is proud to announce two new releases – the JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces – by Monotype Imaging designer Terrance Weinzierl.

Commissioned as companions to Nancy Sharon Collins’ new book The Complete Engraver: A Guide to Monograms, Crests, Ciphers, Seals, and the Etiquette and History of Social Stationery, these fonts are FREE for download from Fonts.com. Simply add them to your cart, download and enjoy.

With 224 pages, and 180 illustrations, The Complete Engraver is both an archive, as well as celebration, of the art of engraving, from its origin to contemporary practice. A designer and authority on engraving, Collins also provides insight on the evolving role of social stationery in today’s age of electronic correspondence. The JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces are a testament to bridging this analog and digital divide.


Of the fonts’ development, Weinzierl explains: “The designs Nancy proposed were a selection from ‘masterplates,’ or lettering templates used for manual engraving machines. The design process started with scanning prints made with engravings. I redrew the shapes with singular, vector lines — an approach similar to the line drawn by the engraver.”

Above you can view the evolution of a Feldman Engraver letterform – and the keen attention to detail – from initial scan to final, rebuilt glyph. Indeed, the aesthetics of both the JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces appear to not simply be inspired by—but, rather, channeled through—the visual ethos of the engraver. The pair of typefaces remain true to the proportion, rhythm and grace of antique engraved letterforms.


To develop the structure of the letterforms further, Weinzierl adds: “We added a precise stroke weight to that line; to put it simply, we dug the dirt away, rebuilt the skeleton, and put the muscle back on. As a designer, the revival projects I’ve done have not only helped me understand typographic history better, but helped me draw better curves and build better fonts.”


Stylistic alternate characters, as seen above, enhance the versatility as well as visibility of the fonts – in addition to both designs providing distinct airs of engraving’s elegance, the typefaces possess an unmistakable kinetic energy. As Weinzierl notes: “JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver have that handmade feel, and they flaunt it with exuberant curves and curls. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we indulge in these organic designs when we get a chance, as it’s very different from our daily challenges in display imaging requiring pixel perfection.”

To learn more about the free JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces, visit the promotion’s landing page on Fonts.com. In addition, click here to learn more about designer Terrance Weinzierl.

The Complete Engraver is available for pre-order here and will be released in stores in September. To learn more about the The Complete Engraver, please visit author Nancy Sharon Collins’ website Engraving for Nerds.

Want to know about typography and the process of engraving? On Friday, August 3, Nancy Sharon Collins will present Engraving and Type, A Beautiful but Somewhat Dysfunctional Relationship at TypeCon2012: MKE SHIFT. To learn more about the program, visit the TypeCon2012 website.

 


by Vikki Quick

Looking for a challenge? Want cool, free, type stuff? Test your “metal” at the 2012 TypeCon Typographic Quiz.

Monotype Imaging is pleased to be a sponsor of TypeCon2012 – the annual conference presented by the non-profit Society of Typographic Aficionados (SOTA). Several of our resident type experts from around the world will be sharing their knowledge and skills. Come by and join us as we take a look at Arabic typography, rare stockpiles of British typographic history, new aviation type trends for cockpit navigation and so much more.

Here are our Typecon2012’s “not to miss” highlights:

  • Daniel Rhatigan will present “From The Monotype Archives,”a look at the rarely seen stockpile of typographic history from 1867 onwards that includes British Monotype archives that reveal the many-layered stories behind the development of type in the 20th century.
    Friday, August 3rd at 8:40 a.m.
  • Steve Matteson will present “What’s Our Vector Victor? Optimizing Typefaces for Cockpit Navigation.” Steve will examine how his work with an industry leading producer of aviation charts is helping to advance safety and accuracy in cockpit navigation. A look at resulting comparative readability studies involving professional pilots will provide a look at how type can improve performance in next-generation aviation charts used in heads-up display panels, tablet computers and iPad tablets.
    Friday, August 3rd at 10:50 a.m.
  • Kamal Mansour, our manager of non-Latin products, together with Patrick Giasson will examine “Bustani: A Classic Arabic Typeface with Calligraphic Features.” The Bustani typeface offers calligraphic Naskh style, while staying within the bounds of pragmatic typography. This new typeface pays tribute to Naskh’s fluid, rich calligraphic forms while remaining directly useable in OpenType-compliant applications. At Monotype Imaging, Kamal has been involved in many aspects of multilingual typography and font development, including OpenType implementations for various scripts including Arabic, Greek, Latin, Hebrew, Thai, Lao, Khmer and Japanese.
    Saturday, August 4th at 8:40 a.m.
  • 2012 TypeCon Typographic Quiz: Can you pick Garamond out of a crowd? Been around the typographic block a few times? Then you’re ready to take the 2012 TypeCon Typographic Quiz. If you’ve taken the quiz before, it won’t help. We’ve got all new questions. In fact, this year’s quiz will be even more fun – and more rewarding than those in the past. Hosted by quizmaster Allan Haley, there will be more prizes, a silent auction and a series of questions for those that don’t care that 5-point type was once called “pearl.” And, if you know your typographic stuff, there is also a “varsity” section with the grand prize of the Linotype Library of fonts – and “Typophile of the Year” bragging rights. There will also be prizes for “Typographic Aficionado” and “Typographically Challenged.”
    Saturday, August 4th, at the InterContinental Hotel, 8:30 – 11:00 p.m.
  • Join our own Akira Kobayashi, together with John Downer and Roger Black during Sunday afternoon’s Type Crit where these masters of typographic analysis and elucidation will provide gentle, constructive criticism as they review your latest design.
    Sunday, August 5th, check for details at Typecon2012

Please join us if you are interested in getting together to talk about fonts and typography, and share typographic items of interest!


by Ryan Arruda

With the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games commencing today, we thought it interesting to explore the typography of Team USA and Team Great Britain’s websites, both of which feature selections from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service.

Adorned in a red, white, blue, gray and gold palette, Team USA’s site features a tiled interface of images overlaid with text set in Linotype’s Neue Helvetica 45 Light typeface. These lean letterforms are also contrasted with an abundance of more visually robust type used on the site; for example, the main navigation of the site features the Neue Helvetica 97 Black Condensed typeface, while rollover images are set in the family’s bold weight.

The site also features a herculean typeface family—ITC’s Aachen—used in supplemental headlines, and whose monolith-sized numerals count down the number of days until the start of the games. In addition, the Team USA word mark is certainly not shy either; its typographic weight presents an inherent confidence, while the angular construction of the letterforms project a keen strength and stability. Confidence, strength, and stability—perhaps fitting axioms for both athletes and typography alike.

London being the host of this year’s games, for comparison we can look at the typography of Team Great Britain’s website. Like Team USA, Great Britain’s web presence features large typography overlaid atop a series of images. Rather than employ the Grotesque Sans or Slab Serif styles of the Neue Helvetica and Aachen typeface families, respectively, Team GB’s site eschews these forms for the affable Geometric Sans style of the ITC Avant Garde Gothic type family.

The website’s navigation employs the face’s medium weight, while headlines are set in both demi bold and bold styles. Despite only using the ITC Avant Garde Gothic type family for a majority of the site, the breadth and balance of the contrasting weights creates a pleasant visual hierarchy.

Interestingly enough, it should be noted that Team USA utilizes typefaces named for (and embodying) the Swiss ethos, as well as those crafted by two British designers who named the fonts after a German city. Conversely, Team Great Britain uses a typeface family inspired by the work of an American graphic design legend.

Even if nothing more than coincidence, through these typographic examples we can discover a metaphor for the the spirit of cooperation and cultural exchange the games strive to foster.


by Ryan Arruda

Fonts.com is proud to announce two new releases – the JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces – by Monotype Imaging designer Terrance Weinzierl.

Commissioned as companions to Nancy Sharon Collins’ new book The Complete Engraver: A Guide to Monograms, Crests, Ciphers, Seals, and the Etiquette and History of Social Stationery, these fonts are FREE for download from Fonts.com. Simply add them to your cart, download and enjoy.

With 224 pages, and 180 illustrations, The Complete Engraver is both an archive, as well as celebration, of the art of engraving, from its origin to contemporary practice. A designer and authority on engraving, Collins also provides insight on the evolving role of social stationery in today’s age of electronic correspondence. The JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces are a testament to bridging this analog and digital divide.


Of the fonts’ development, Weinzierl explains: “The designs Nancy proposed were a selection from ‘masterplates,’ or lettering templates used for manual engraving machines. The design process started with scanning prints made with engravings. I redrew the shapes with singular, vector lines — an approach similar to the line drawn by the engraver.”

Above you can view the evolution of a Feldman Engraver letterform – and the keen attention to detail – from initial scan to final, rebuilt glyph. Indeed, the aesthetics of both the JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces appear to not simply be inspired by—but, rather, channeled through—the visual ethos of the engraver. The pair of typefaces remain true to the proportion, rhythm and grace of antique engraved letterforms.


To develop the structure of the letterforms further, Weinzierl adds: “We added a precise stroke weight to that line; to put it simply, we dug the dirt away, rebuilt the skeleton, and put the muscle back on. As a designer, the revival projects I’ve done have not only helped me understand typographic history better, but helped me draw better curves and build better fonts.”


Stylistic alternate characters, as seen above, enhance the versatility as well as visibility of the fonts – in addition to both designs providing distinct airs of engraving’s elegance, the typefaces possess an unmistakable kinetic energy. As Weinzierl notes: “JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver have that handmade feel, and they flaunt it with exuberant curves and curls. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we indulge in these organic designs when we get a chance, as it’s very different from our daily challenges in display imaging requiring pixel perfection.”

To learn more about the free JMC Engraver & Feldman Engraver typefaces, visit the promotion’s landing page on Fonts.com. In addition, click here to learn more about designer Terrance Weinzierl.

The Complete Engraver is available for pre-order here and will be released in stores in September. To learn more about the The Complete Engraver, please visit author Nancy Sharon Collins’ website Engraving for Nerds.

Want to know about typography and the process of engraving? On Friday, August 3, Nancy Sharon Collins will present Engraving and Type, A Beautiful but Somewhat Dysfunctional Relationship at TypeCon2012: MKE SHIFT. To learn more about the program, visit the TypeCon2012 website.

 


by Ryan Arruda

Established over a century ago, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra performs to over a quarter-million patrons annually. Their website features the ITC Avant Garde Gothic typeface family for headlines, subheads, and navigation, utilizing bold, demi bold, and medium weights.

While folks might perceive a symphony—especially one founded in 1906—as apt to have gilded aesthetics, the use of geometric sans-serif typefaces from the ITC Avant Garde Gothic family reinforces the clean, and decidedly contemporary website.

Employing the bold weight of ITC Avant Garde Gothic family for headlines—overlaid on large images—provides a nice swell of typographic presence. Furthermore, having the serifed Georgia typeface family as companion body text provides a handsome balance of geometric and traditional letterforms. The aesthetic of the website is both well crafted and pleasant, yet, above all, approachable…an ethos that the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra seems to strive for.

The ITC Avant Garde Gothic family is available in 13 styles through the Fonts.com Web Fonts service, as well as 23 desktop varieties.

 

 


by Ryan Arruda

Since the age of 12, Jim Wasco has possessed a passion for lettering. Whether through calligraphic endeavors or type design, his work presents a keen understanding of the symbiotic nuances of both disciplines.

A type designer with Monotype Imaging for 10 years, Jim’s recently released Neue Aachen typeface family is available in 18 styles and is rocketing up the Fonts.com New Best Sellers List.

Jim recently shared with us some insight into his type design practice:

Favorite text on typography
Writing & Illuminating & Lettering by Edward Johnston.

Personal design luminary
Leonardo da Vinci & Albrecht Dürer.

Favorite era of design history
Renaissance and 1950s Modern.

Learned to design type
By doing hand lettering.

Design mentor
My father, Lawrence Wasco.

Longest a typeface has taken to design
Elegy, which took three and a half months over a period of about a year.

Favorite typographic resource
Type specimen books.

Jim Wasco Typeface Designs

Habitually challenging glyphs to design
Sans-serif italics.

Percent of type design that’s art vs. percent that’s science
100% art.

Your typeface families that pair especially well
By contrast, Elegy with Neue Aachen Black.

Common personality of your typefaces
They all solve design problems.

Aspiring type designers should possess
A focus on legibility.

Endeavors which hone type design skills
[Activities] drawing from the right side of the brain.

Most egregious typographic error in common practice today
Script or Blackletter forms used in all cap settings.

Recommended online design resources
International Association of Master Penmen, Engrossers and Teachers of Handwriting

 


by Ryan Arruda

With over 250 locations, DoubleTree by Hilton provides full service lodging across the globe. The hotels strive to provide all of the familiar comforts of home — including guests receiving the hotels’ signature (and delicious) chocolate chip cookies upon arrival.

The DoubleTree website features the Monotype Garamond typeface for both its headlines and subheads. The use of an Old Style typeface — and a classic one at that — contrasts nicely with the clean, crisp and modern imagery employed on the DoubleTree website. Monotype Garamond’s letterforms are astute without being pretentious, welcoming while still quite refined.

Monotype Garamond is available in 30 desktop varieties and nine Web fonts styles, including roman, italic, bold, and bold italic weights.


by Chris Roberts

Here’s a ranked listing of Fonts.com Web Fonts’ top 100 most used Web fonts for June 2012:

Neue Helvetica
Trade Gothic
Futura
Frutiger
Gill Sans
Avenir
Helvetica
DIN Next
Univers
ITC Avant Garde Gothic
Neue Frutiger
Avenir Next
New Century Schoolbook
PMN Caecilia
Trade Gothic Next
Linotype Univers
Neo Sans
Times
Neue Helvetica Arabic
DIN 1451
Linotype Didot
Arial
Frutiger Next
Harmonia Sans
Slate
VAG Rounded
Garamond 3
Memo
Yakout
Monotype News Gothic
Soho
Bauer Bodoni
Frutiger Serif
Sackers Gothic
Laurentian
ITC Officina Sans
Rockwell
Gothic
Futura T
Heisei Kaku Gothic
Cachet
Eurostile LT
Glypha
Soho Gothic
ITC Franklin Gothic
Akko
Century Gothic
Egyptian Slate
ITC Lubalin Graph
Plate Gothic MT
Monotype Grotesque
ITC Legacy Serif
Monotype Garamond
Calibri
Optima
Museo
Plantin
Neue Helvetica eText
Adelle
Neue Haas Grotesk
ITC Officina Serif
Clarendon
Aachen
Ocean Sans
News Gothic
ITC Stone Informal
Amasis
ITC Garamond
Consolas
Andale Mono
Droid Sans Mono
Bell
Monotype Modern
Klint
Azbuka
ITC Conduit
ITC American Typewriter
ITC Franklin
Wiesbaden Swing
MYuppy
Baskerville
Impact
Eurostile Next
Georgia
Linotype Feltpen
Camphor
Mitra
Gazette
P22 Underground
ITC Caslon No. 224
Calvert
Bembo
Rotis Sans Serif
Neuzeit Office
Memphis
Serifa
Agilita
Abadi
Janson Text
Loft


by Ryan Arruda

TED is known worldwide for providing a myriad of programs featuring innovative and influential speakers from a wide swath of disciplines. TED-Ed is an extension of that mission of disseminating knowledge, focused specifically on assisting educators with interactive teaching materials; whereas the TED motto is Ideas Worth Spreading, the mission of TED-Ed is Lessons Worth Sharing.

The TED-Ed website features the Neue Helvetica typeface family extensively, employing it for both the masthead, navigation, and section headlines.

The main navigation bar features Neue Helvetica 65 Medium, while the secondary navigation uses the typeface’s light weight. The core of the site features a series of illustrations, with one panel featuring text set in Neue Helvetica 25 Ultra Light which changes to red when moused over, a nice touch indeed.Ted-Ed Homepage
The most captivating aspect of the homepage is hidden at first glance. When moused over, the site’s illustrations reveal headlines set in Neue Helvetica 45 Light, which are knocked out of a slightly transparent field of color. Two small subheads set in Neue Helvetica 75 Bold balance the text arrangement quite nicely.

While Neue Helvetica provides an apt counterpoint to the more expressive illustrations on the TED-Ed site, it serves as a greater reminder that, yes, while Neue Helvetica is a stalwart typeface for presenting information cleanly or matter-of-factly, when consciously paired with color it also can embody a more sprightly character.

Neue Helvetica is available in over 50 Web font varieties, ranging in weights and widths from Ultra Light Condensed to Black Extended.

 


by Johnathan Zsittnik

Over the past few months, we’ve unveiled several new tools for type enthusiasts including the redesigned Fonts.com, our Fonts.com Web Fonts Extension for Adobe Photoshop and our FontGazer plug-in. All three were designed to make it easier to browse, experiment with and license type. FontGazer was introduced first, premiering as the first plug-in to enable font trialing and purchasing within Adobe InDesign. Three months later, we’re happy to announce a new version of FontGazer and to officially take it out of beta.

FontGazerWe gathered plenty of feedback from our users during the beta – valuable insights that have helped shape the direction of the product. It’s clear the community loves the concept of in-app font trialing. We also received plenty of suggestions for things to work on. Enhancements found in the latest build include a cleaner, more intuitive UI, a revert button that allows you to return to your default text after applying a font, integration of the new Fonts.com shopping cart, and a revamped, stable architecture. Best of all, FontGazer remains free. Download your copy today and stay tuned for more enhancements to come.

Johnathan Zsittnik
Johnathan Zsittnik is the eCommerce Marketing Manager at Monotype Imaging. Johnathan holds both a bachelor’s degree in marketing and a master’s degree in business administration from Bentley University.


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