fonts.com blog
Posts Tagged ‘futura’

by Chris Roberts

Here’s a ranked listing of Fonts.com Web Fonts’ top 100 most used Web fonts for September 2011:

Avenir® 55 Roman
Futura® Bold
Avenir® 95 Black, Ext.
Neue Helvetica® 55 Roman
Neue Helvetica® 35 Thin
Avenir® 85 Heavy
Univers® 57 Condensed
Neue Helvetica® 75 Bold
Neue Helvetica® 77 Condensed Bold
Garamond 3 Regular
Garamond 3 Italic
Bauer Bodoni® Black Italic
Sackers™ Gothic Heavy
Sackers™ Gothic Medium
Avenir® 65 Medium
Trade Gothic® Condensed Bold #20, Ext.
Avenir® 35 Light
Neue Helvetica® 45 Light
Neue Helvetica® 87 Condensed Heavy
Trade Gothic® Condensed Bold 20
Trade Gothic® Bold
Helvetica® Condensed Bold
Neue Helvetica® 25 Ultra Light
Futura Medium
Neue Helvetica® 57 Condensed
Administer BookItalic
Avenir® 95 Black
Linotype Univers® 620 Condensed Bold
Linotype Didot® Bold
Linotype Didot® Roman
Linotype Univers® 420 Condensed
Linotype Didot® Italic
Neue Helvetica® 67 Condensed Medium
Linotype Univers® 320 Condensed Light, Ext.
Futura® Book
Univers® 47 Condensed Light Oblique, Ext.
Trade Gothic® Roman
Avenir® 45 Book
Futura® Heavy
Futura® Bold Condensed
Futura® Medium Condensed
PMN Caecilia® 75 Bold
PMN Caecilia® 85 Heavy
Neue Helvetica® 45 Light, Ext.
Trade Gothic® Bold 2
PMN Caecilia® 76 Bold Italic
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Book
Neue Helvetica® 65 Medium
Monotype Grotesque® Condensed
Neue Helvetica® 37 Condensed Thin
Neue Helvetica® 47 Condensed Light
Neue Frutiger® Light
Trade Gothic® Bold, Ext.
Neue Frutiger® Bold
Neue Frutiger® Book
ITC Legacy® Serif Bold Italic
Neue Helvetica® 55 Roman, Ext.
VAG Rounded™ Bold
Rockwell® Bold
Trade Gothic® Condensed 18
Univers® 67 Condensed Bold Oblique
Avenir® 55 Roman, Ext.
Trade Gothic® Extended Bold
Felbridge™ Regular
Neue Helvetica® 77 Condensed Bold, Ext.
Cochin® Roman
Neuzeit® Office Bold
Neuzeit® Office Regular, Ext.
VAG Rounded™ Black
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Medium
Neue Helvetica® 63 Extended Medium
Neue Helvetica® 53 Extended, Ext.
Frutiger® 65 Bold
Neue Helvetica® 73 Extended Bold, Ext.
DIN Next™ Bold
Frutiger® 55 Roman
Trade Gothic® Bold #2, Ext.
DIN Next™ Regular
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Bold
VAG Rounded™ Light
Trade Gothic Next Regular
Helvetica® Bold, Ext.
Helvetica® Bold
Trade Gothic® Condensed #18, Ext.
Neue Helvetica® 65 Medium, Ext.
DIN 1451 Engschrift
DIN Next™ Condensed Bold
Frutiger® 45 Light, Ext.
Neo Sans Regular, Ext.
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Demi
Palatino® Sans Arabic Regular
Avenir® Next Demi
Trade Gothic Next Condensed Bold
Eurostile® Next Regular
Eurostile® Next Extended Regular
Trade Gothic® Light
Eurostile® Next Extended Bold
Eurostile® Next Extended Semibold
Eurostile® Next Semi Bold, Ext.
Gill Sans® Book


by Chris Roberts

Here’s a ranked listing of Fonts.com Web Fonts’ top 100 most used Web fonts for August 2011:

Neue Helvetica® 87 Condensed Heavy
Administer BookItalic
Univers® 57 Condensed
Neue Helvetica® 77 Condensed Bold
Avenir® 85 Heavy
Garamond 3 Regular
Helvetica® Condensed Bold
Futura® Bold
Garamond 3 Italic
Bauer Bodoni® Black Italic
Neue Helvetica® 35 Thin
Sackers™ Gothic Heavy
Sackers™ Gothic Medium
Neue Helvetica® 55 Roman
Neue Helvetica® 57 Condensed
Neue Helvetica® 75 Bold
Avenir® 35 Light
Avenir® 65 Medium
Avenir® 55 Roman
Neue Helvetica® 45 Light
Trade Gothic® Bold
Futura Medium
Trade Gothic® Condensed Bold 20
Trade Gothic® Condensed Bold #20, Ext
Avenir® 95 Black
Neue Helvetica® 25 Ultra Light
ITC Legacy® Serif Bold Italic
Avenir® 95 Black, Ext
Futura® Book
Linotype Didot® Bold
Linotype Didot® Roman
Linotype Didot® Italic
Neue Helvetica® 67 Condensed Medium
Linotype Univers® 420 Condensed
PMN Caecilia® 75 Bold
Linotype Univers® 620 Condensed Bold
Futura® Bold Condensed
Neue Helvetica® 47 Condensed Light
PMN Caecilia® 85 Heavy
Linotype Univers® 320 Condensed Light, Ext
PMN Caecilia® 76 Bold Italic
Futura® Medium Condensed
Univers® 47 Condensed Light Oblique, Ext
Futura® Heavy
Neue Helvetica® 37 Condensed Thin
Monotype Grotesque® Condensed
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Book
Avenir® 45 Book
VAG Rounded™ Black
Neue Helvetica® 45 Light, Ext
Neue Helvetica® 65 Medium
Avenir® 55 Roman, Ext
Rockwell® Bold
VAG Rounded™ Bold
Neue Helvetica® 55 Roman, Ext
Trade Gothic® Roman
Felbridge™ Regular
Neue Helvetica® 63 Extended Medium
Trade Gothic® Extended Bold
Neue Helvetica® 53 Extended, Ext
Helvetica® Condensed Bold, Ext
Neue Helvetica® 73 Extended Bold, Ext
Frutiger® 65 Bold
Neue Frutiger® Light
Eurostile® Next Regular
Eurostile® Next Extended Regular
Eurostile® Next Extended Bold
Neue Helvetica® 65 Medium, Ext
Eurostile® Next Extended Semibold
Eurostile® Next Semi Bold, Ext
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Medium
Frutiger® 55 Roman
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Bold
ITC Avant Garde Gothic® Demi
Trade Gothic® Light
Neue Frutiger® Bold
Neo Sans Regular, Ext
Trade Gothic® Bold, Ext
Neue Frutiger® Book
Univers® 67 Condensed Bold Oblique
DIN Next™ Regular
Helvetica® Light, Ext
Trade Gothic® Condensed 18
Helvetica® Rounded Condensed Bold
Palatino® Sans Arabic Regular
Frutiger® 45 Light, Ext
Neue Frutiger® Regular
Cochin® Roman
Helvetica® Condensed
Trade Gothic® Condensed #18, Ext
Neo® Sans Arabic Regular
VAG Rounded™ Light
ITC Lubalin Graph® Book
Neue Helvetica® 67 Condensed Medium, Ext
Avenir® Next Demi
Avenir® 35 Light, Ext
Neue Helvetica® 75 Bold, Ext
Neue Frutiger® Medium
Helvetica® Bold, Ext
Frutiger® 65 Bold, Ext


by Allan Haley

Few typefaces are released with the fanfare of the Carter Sans™ family – but then a new design from Matthew Carter is something of importance. Designers were treated to a sneak preview of sorts when the family was used as the graphic identity for the 2010 Art Directors Club Hall of Fame ceremony, at which Carter was an inductee. This was followed by the official announcement of the typeface earlier this year.  Which, in-turn, was followed by an unprecedented – and very special – event this week.

On Wednesday evening, San Francisco’s design community joined Carter at the Book Club of California in the celebration of the Carter Sans release. Also at the event was Dan Reynolds, Monotype Imaging’s senior type designer, who collaborated with Carter on the design of the family.

More than 90 graphic designers, art directors, creative directors and other lovers of type and typography filled the intimate venue. While primarily intended as evening of typographic amity, the event was highlighted by an informal interview of Carter by Patrick Coyne, publisher of Communication Arts magazine, and a brief slide presentation by Reynolds.

In the interview, Carter answered questions about what inspires his designs. “I don’t get inspired,” he said. “I work from a design brief – even if it’s my own. I show up; I put in the time, and I do the work.”

He also told the story about how the John Coltrane Quartet changed his life. “In 1960, I spent several weeks in New York visiting design studios and trying to find work,” Carter recalled. I didn’t have much luck, became discouraged and considered returning home to London. About that same time, I heard the John Coltrane Quartet play their first engagement.” Over several weeks, Carter heard them three or four times. “Sometimes they played the same song in the second set that they played in the first. Not because they were lazy but because they wanted to surpass themselves, or find something in the music that they hadn’t found earlier in the evening.” Carter decided that he owed it to himself to stay in New York. “Their seriousness of purpose was a lesson,’ he said. “Four great geniuses that would knock themselves out every night when they could have coasted.” This story is clearly a metaphor for Carter’s long and storied career.

After the interview, Reynolds presented slides detailing the process of his collaboration with Carter and the work that went into creating the large and diverse character set for the family. Carter recalled that the design of Carter Sans got off to somewhat of a rocky start but that he was delighted by the work that Reynolds brought to the project.

Questions from the audience ran the gamut from the value of type to branding – “It’s an invaluable part of the mix,” said Carter – IKEA’s replacement of the Futura® design with the Verdana® typeface – “while designed for on-screen use, it works quite well in their catalog,” to the future of fonts – “Web fonts are clearly the next important step in typographic communication.”

It was a rare and very special evening that will be remembered and retold.

Allan Haley
Allan Haley is Director of Words & Letters at Monotype Imaging. Here he is responsible for strategic planning and creative implementation of just about everything related to typeface designs.



by Allan Haley

A Modern Classic Makes it to the Web

The Futura® typeface family was designed over 80 years ago as fonts of metal type. It was made available for phototypesetting equipment about 40 years ago, and as digital fonts a little over 20 years ago. Today, this important design has made yet another technological leap and is available via Fonts.com Web Fonts.

Many assume that Futura was developed at the Bauhaus and is the embodiment of that school’s teaching. The reality is, however, that Paul Renner, Futura’s originator, had no Bauhaus affiliation. Futura, in many ways, even runs counter to Bauhaus teaching, and was rarely used by Bauhaus designers.

As first drawn, Futura clearly embodied the ideologies of the Bauhaus movement. While the capital letters were patterned after Roman character shapes and proportions, its lowercase was a design experiment that took the “form follows function” philosophy to extremes. Many characters were constructed out of literal geometric and minimalist shapes. The end result was a set of glyphs that may have reflected Bauhaus teaching, but were typographically virtually useless.

Renner submitted his new design to the Bauer Typefoundry of Frankfurt, which accepted the work – with the stipulation that its staff designers could make a “few” modifications to the typeface. Bauer’s designers left Renner’s caps pretty much untouched, but felt obliged to spend considerable time on the lowercase. Here, they did an exemplary job of melding Renner’s philosophy with proven typeface design precepts. The end result was an immediate and overwhelming success in Germany. It wasn’t until after World War II, however, that Futura was introduced into the United Kingdom and the United States.

While Futura appears to be constructed out of strict geometric shapes, it is not. First, as monotone as they may appear, the stroke weights of the design do vary. The most obvious place is where curved strokes join a stem. Here, the strokes are tapered so that the intersection does not look too heavy. Diagonals are lighter in weight that vertical strokes, and horizontal strokes are lighter still. In addition, the inside diagonals of the ‘W’ are lighter than the outside diagonals. If you look very carefully you will also discover that the top and bottom parts of the ‘O’ are lighter than the sides – and that the top is just a bit lighter than the bottom.

In addition, characters like the ‘G,’ ‘H,’ ‘R’ and ‘P,’ which you might expect to be horizontally symmetrical, are actually somewhat high waisted.

Whether a “true” geometric design, or not, the Futura typeface family has proved itself a valuable typographic contributor for the better part of a century. And now, 45 fonts of Futura are available for Web font implementation.

Allan Haley
Allan Haley is Director of Words & Letters at Monotype Imaging. Here he is responsible for strategic planning and creative implementation of just about everything related to typeface designs.



by Allan Haley

A couple of weeks ago, The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay announced that they were switching from the Arial® typeface they normally use to set email to the Century Gothic™ design. The move was part of the school’s five-year plan to go green – and save money. The school claimed that switching typefaces would save 30% in ink and toner consumption.

Maybe.

While it is true that the strokes of the basic weight of Century Gothic are about 30% lighter than those in Arial, Century Gothic has wider proportions than Arial and takes about 30% more space to set the same content. The end result is that there is probably no savings in ink and toner – and more paper is potentially used.

(click for full size image)

Many entities are jumping on the green bandwagon these days – which is a good thing – and the right typefaces can clearly help save toner and paper. But selecting just any typeface to accomplish these goals may be (typographically) akin to throwing out the baby with the bath water. In addition to varying in weight and proportion, not all typefaces are created equal when it comes to performing well small text sizes. Since the purpose of email, and other text documents, is to provide information, it doesn’t make sense to use a typeface that is not up to the job of providing that information clearly and efficiently.

Arial is a typeface that would be considered by most type experts to be high on the legibility and readability scale. Century Gothic: not so much. Arial has characters like the two-storied lowercase ‘a’ and pot-hooked ‘t’ that help make the design very legible. In addition, there is a slight modulation to the weight of the strokes that make up the characters – which improves the reading process. Century Gothic does not have these characteristics. In addition, Century Gothic is based on earlier designs like the Futura® and ITC Avant Garde® Gothic typefaces that were not developed for setting lengthy text copy. Both are designs that are best suited to setting headlines, subheads and very short blocks of copy.

(click for full size image)

So, in a number of ways, setting copy in Arial is an excellent way to be environmentally – and typographically – responsible.

Allan Haley
Allan Haley is Director of Words & Letters at Monotype Imaging. Here he is responsible for strategic planning and creative implementation of just about everything related to typeface designs.


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