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Posts Tagged ‘typography’

by Sumner Stone

Magma II

Natural beauty speaks for itself. When we see a full moon, a ripe peach, or a smooth round pebble on the beach, their simple shapes touch something significant inside us. Man-made objects such as letters can create a similar inner resonance. A perfectly balanced ‘g’ or a subtly crafted ‘O,’ can evoke a delicate but powerful aesthetic experience. Unfortunately, few letter shapes elicit this response.

Just to begin to qualify, the letters must have certain fundamental properties. For instance, they must have pleasing proportions between the weight of the stems and the size of the counters. The curved strokes must be both graceful and strong. The swelling of the curves must be subtle and consistent. Other proportions, such as the relationship between height, width, and stem weight must be harmonious.Magma IIBut creating these relationships does not in itself guarantee that the form will possess the desired magic. Master craftsmanship transcends measurement. Only careful observation and intensive practice will lead the designer to synergetic forms. Type designers must continually ratchet their skills upward in order to reach the point where their letters attain the kind of beauty we see in the night sky, the orchard, or at the beach.

Sans serif typeface designs are not generally known for their beauty. They are for the most part primarily notable for their reliability and sturdiness. They are safe. They work. They are plumbing. Only a few sans serifs fulfill this functional role and yet also have forms that reach the aesthetic level described above. My goal in designing the Magma™ II typeface was to create one of those designs.

Magma II is the latest installment in a project that has been ongoing for two decades. This typeface family has its head in the night sky, and its feet firmly on the ground. It is intended to be both charismatic and practical. Large sizes have the ability to charm. At the same time, long passages of text have an inviting presence, and with its alternate one-story ‘a’and ‘g’it shines even at very small sizes.Magma II

The Magma family has five weights –thin, light, regular, semibold and bold. The thin weight is especially effective for display. The other four weights can be used for both text and display over a very large range of sizes. The skeletons of the capitals are closely related to the proportions of the Adobe Trajan® typeface, a design I art directed at Adobe Systems. The skeletons of the lower case forms are closely related to those of Garamond.

Sumner Stone

Magma II is part of the Magma superfamily which also includes the Magma Compressed family, the Magma Condensed family, the Munc family, the Tuff family and Basalt. These typefaces are all harmonious companions. They can be used together to create distinctive, integrated typographic compositions for everything from logotypes to books. Styles can be mixed together within a single word.

Magma II is magical. Let it cast a typographic spell for you.


by Ryan Arruda

Here’s a listing of the top 100 most used fonts from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service for August 2014:

Trade Gothic
Neue Helvetica
Avenir Next
Univers
Avenir
Proxima Nova
Helvetica
Frutiger
Gill Sans
Futura
Linotype Univers
Klint
DIN Next
Museo Sans
Museo Slab
Century Gothic
ITC Avant Garde Gothic
Neo Sans
Chaparral
Arial
Rockwell
Myriad
Motoya Birch
Eurostile LT
Univers Next
ITC Legacy Serif
ITC Lubalin Graph
ITC Caslon No. 224
ITC Century
VAG Rounded
Soho Gothic
ITC Franklin Gothic
Optima
ITC Legacy Square Serif
Trade Gothic Next
Neue Frutiger
Swiss 721
Soho
Swift
Neue Helvetica eText
Helvetica World
Minion
ITC Officina Serif
Frutiger Next
Linotype Sketch
ITC Charter
Gill Sans Infant
Francker
Adobe Garamond
Bookman Old Style
Linotype Didot
PMN Caecilia
Auriol
Humanist 777
Slate
ITC Officina Sans
ITC American Typewriter
ITC Conduit
Bodoni LT
Rotis Sans Serif
Lexia
Copperplate Gothic
ITC Stone Informal
ITC American Typewriter Hellenic
Trade Gothic Next Soft Rounded
Egyptienne F
ITC Fenice
Calibri
Rotis II Sans
Delima
Monotype Goudy
Bembo
Droid Sans Mono
Adobe Caslon
Novecento
Droid Serif
Effra
Monotype News Gothic
C Hei 2 PRC
Copperplate
Baskerville Classico
Orator
Caslon Classico
M Elle PRC
C Hei PRC
M Lady PRC
M Stiff Hei PRC
ITC Stone Sans
ITC Stone Serif
Sackers Gothic
Twentieth Century
Amasis
Plantin
Monotype Garamond
Lucida Sans
Droid Sans
Azbuka
Museo
Comic Strip
Grocers


by Ryan Arruda

Here’s a listing of the top 100 most used fonts from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service for July 2014:

Trade Gothic
Neue Helvetica
Avenir Next
Avenir
Univers
Proxima Nova
Frutiger
Helvetica
Klint
Futura
Gill Sans
Linotype Univers
Museo Sans
DIN Next
Neo Sans
Museo Slab
ITC Avant Garde Gothic
Century Gothic
Chaparral
Arial
Rockwell
Myriad
ITC Caslon No. 224
Eurostile LT
Motoya Birch
Univers Next
ITC Legacy Serif
ITC Lubalin Graph
VAG Rounded
ITC Century
Soho Gothic
ITC Franklin Gothic
Optima
Linotype Sketch
ITC Legacy Square Serif
Trade Gothic Next
Soho
Neue Frutiger
Swiss 721
Swift
ITC Officina Serif
Neue Helvetica eText
Minion
ITC Charter
Gill Sans Infant
Frutiger Next
Linotype Didot
PMN Caecilia
Bookman Old Style
Bodoni LT
Helvetica World
ITC Fenice
ITC Stone Informal
ITC Officina Sans
Lexia
Adobe Garamond
Slate
Humanist 777
Copperplate Gothic
ITC Conduit
Auriol
Rotis II Sans
Calibri
Trade Gothic Next Soft Rounded
ITC Eras
Novecento
ITC American Typewriter Hellenic
ITC American Typewriter
Rotis Sans Serif
Droid Sans Mono
Orator
Egyptienne F
Adobe Caslon
Droid Serif
Effra
C Hei 2 PRC
Monotype Goudy
Sackers Gothic
Baskerville Classico
M Elle PRC
C Hei PRC
M Lady PRC
M Stiff Hei PRC
ITC Stone Sans
Delima
ITC Stone Serif
Monotype News Gothic
Plantin
Comic Strip
Caslon Classico
Lucida Sans
Brandon Grotesque
Twentieth Century
Azbuka
Linotype Feltpen
Cachet
Droid Sans
Copperplate
Inform
Foco Corp


by Ryan Arruda

Type Through the Eras

Fonts.com is in the midst of a three-day sale celebrating some of the most distinctive eras in design history. Running until July 25th, our Type Through the Eras sale brings you classic and contemporary typefaces inspired by important design periods of the 20th century—with up to 85% savings! We’ve featured fonts from the elegant Art Deco era, as well strong, industrial typefaces inspired by the Constructivism era. This promotion won’t last, so be sure to take advantage of these excellent discounts before it’s too late.

Just check out the Type Through the Eras page on Fonts.com to learn all the details of the event, and to see us reveal our last featured era on Friday! Plus, you can also win some excellent design-themed prizes—just tweet @Fontscom using the hashtag #TypeEras. Again, see our Type Through the Eras page all the details.

In the meantime, take a look at a few of the great families that are part of this sale:

Blog1Blog2Blog3

Ryan ArrudaRyan Arruda is the Web Content Strategist at Monotype Imaging. Ryan holds a bachelor’s degree in film studies from Clark University, and an MFA in graphic design from RISD.

by Allan Haley

Quire Sans

“I always start by visualizing the design in my head,” says Jim Ford about how he designs typefaces. “I’ll work out the concept in my mind for several days – or even weeks – before I start to draw anything.” Many type designers first visualize a new typeface in their mind’s eye, but they typically quickly transfer their mental images to sketches – either on screen or on paper. Ford’s process is unusual – in several ways.

He does not move on to the next step until he has fully worked out the design concept in his mind. Once Ford has revised and refined a mental design to his satisfaction, he either files it away mentally for future development, or he proceeds to sketch a few characters.

In the case of the Quire Sans™ typeface, Ford’s mental design was a meditation on contemporary humanist sans serifs. “I had developed several proprietary sans serif families over the years for various companies’ branding purposes,” says Ford. “Quire Sans is in a sense a reflection of all that knowledge and experience. I felt it was time to make a humanist sans of my own.” His vision was to make a design that would communicate clearly in all environments. “To ensure that Quire Sans would perform well on screen, I did what I call ‘soft proofs’ of the design on my computer before I actually printed anything out for further review,” explains Ford. He also performed screen tests on both Mac and Windows machines. “Interestingly, you discover some major changes in imaging on screen between the two platforms,” Ford explains.

Quire Sans

Ford’s design process is different from other designers’ in additional ways. After drawing characters that embody the essence of the design, he uses these to make a poster. “I create a poster for the typefaces I draw before I’m very far into the actual design process,” says Ford. “I’ll set key words at various sizes to see how the design looks in use. The letters have to work and function as a typeface. The poster shows me the ‘end game.’ Only when I’m pleased with the key words, do I continue with the design process.” Ford kept his poster of the Quire Sans design close at hand while he drew the rest of the characters – and referred to it often. The result is a typeface family that does indeed perform admirably in an extremely wide range of sizes and applications.

Quire Sans

“It was challenging to achieve all my objectives for the design,” Ford acknowledges, “from representing my personal style, to capturing the essence of oldstyle typefaces, and making a sans serif family that performs well in nearly any environment. I admit I’m pleased with how it all turned out. The designs work well together, and I believe they can work in virtually any environment. If this were the only sans serif design that I do, I would be very happy with it.”

The Quire Sans family is comprised of 20 typefaces – 10 weights from thin to fat – each with an italic complement. The designs are available as desktop fonts, and as a special introductory offer the complete Quire Sans family is available for just $99 until August 12th! That’s an 80% savings!

The Quire Sans collection is also available as Web fonts through all Fonts.com Web Fonts paid subscriptions;  in addition, the Quire Sans family is available as desktop fonts through Fonts.com Professional and Master subscriptions, as well as plans paired with our new desktop add-on option.

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 Johnathan Zsittnik

Just over a year ago, we debuted our Master level Fonts.com Web Fonts plans. These plans offer our broadest range of benefits including millions of pageviews and our Typecast design app. But the keystone is unlimited desktop fonts. This feature was inspired by the knowledge that most of our customers design for both print and the Web, and that Web designers rely on tools traditionally used for print. Today, the desktop font feature has proven to be incredibly popular among Master subscribers—in fact, many of you on our other plans have shown interest in having it available as well. Starting today, you can!

Add Unlimited Desktop Fonts

Standard and Pro subscribers can now add unlimited desktop fonts to their existing subscriptions. This is a great option for those designing for print and the Web, but don’t have the traffic to justify moving all the way up to the Master plan. Boost any new or existing subscription for an additional $50 per month (or a little less for annual or three year plans). At the cost of 1–2 fonts, we hope you’ll agree that this is a great value.

The feature operates just like our Master subscriptions. Fonts are distributed through our SkyFonts client—the original desktop font syncing utility. Browse through our selection of more than 7,000 amazing designs from top foundries—including Monotype, Linotype, ITC, Bitstream, Ascender and others—and sync fonts on up to five workstations. When you see one you like, click the ‘add to SkyFonts’ button and SkyFonts will install the font for you. Repeat as often as you like. Fonts are licensed similar to traditional fonts, giving you an unparalleled range of assets for creating logos, imagery and more.

To add unlimited desktop font to a Standard or Pro subscription, visit our Plans & Pricing page, select the ‘Include unlimited desktop fonts’ button and click ‘update my plan’ or ‘subscribe now.’ If you have an existing subscription, we’ll sync up your billing so you’ll receive only one charge each billing period. We think you’ll love this new option, but if its not for you or you no longer need it, you can cancel the desktop font add on at any time, and even retain your Web font subscription if you like. This is a great way to get access to an amazing library of fonts without making a major commitment up front.


by Ryan Arruda

Here’s a listing of the top 100 most used fonts from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service for June 2014:

Trade Gothic
Neue Helvetica
Avenir Next
Univers
Avenir
Proxima Nova
Frutiger
Helvetica
Futura
Gill Sans
Museo Sans
DIN Next
Linotype Univers
Century Gothic
Museo Slab
Klint
Arial
ITC Avant Garde Gothic
Chaparral
Neo Sans
Rockwell
Eurostile LT
Myriad
Motoya Birch
ITC Legacy Serif
ITC Lubalin Graph
Univers Next
VAG Rounded
Soho Gothic
ITC Century
ITC Caslon No. 224
Linotype Sketch
ITC Franklin Gothic
Optima
ITC Legacy Square Serif
Trade Gothic Next
Neue Frutiger
Soho
Swiss 721
Swift
Neue Helvetica eText
ITC Charter
Frutiger Next
ITC Officina Serif
Helvetica World
Gill Sans Infant
Minion
Bodoni LT
Lexia
Bookman Old Style
Adobe Garamond
Linotype Didot
ITC Officina Sans
Slate
Humanist 777
PMN Caecilia
ITC Eras
Copperplate Gothic
ITC Conduit
Calibri
Orator
Auriol
Trade Gothic Next Soft Rounded
Rotis Sans Serif
ITC Stone Informal
Novecento
ITC American Typewriter Hellenic
Rotis II Sans
ITC American Typewriter
Droid Sans Mono
ITC Fenice
Bembo
Droid Serif
C Hei 2 PRC
Egyptienne F
Brandon Grotesque
Adobe Caslon
Monotype News Gothic
Monotype Goudy
Caslon Classico
M Elle PRC
C Hei PRC
M Lady PRC
M Stiff Hei PRC
Baskerville Classico
Azbuka
Glypha
ITC Stone Sans
ITC Stone Serif
Twentieth Century
Delima
Plantin
Francker
Linotype Feltpen
Cachet
Comic Strip
Akko
Droid Sans
Alternate Gothic
Sackers Gothic


by Allan Haley

NeueHelveticaCompressed_Blog

Almost 50 years since it was first announced, the Helvetica Compressed suite of typefaces has been re-envisioned for digital use. Designed in 1966, by Matthew Carter, for phototypesetting, the three original typefaces have been immune to changing style or fads. The remarkable collection of designs continues to be used for advertising, packaging and other venues where a commanding design and economy of space is required. With typography showing up on more and more small screens, however, it became obvious that the faces should be updated.

Helvetica Compressed

When Linotype first asked Carter to craft the Helvetica Compressed designs, characters had to be drawn within a coarse, 18-unit system, as seen in the image to the right. Every letter was limited to being designed to fit with one to eighteen units; this limited the number of typefaces that could be designed to very narrow proportions.

Drawn by Monotype designers to complement the Neue Helvetica family, the Neue Helvetica Compressed collection of typefaces benefits from 8 weights that range from ultra light to black – mirroring those in the Neue Helvetica family and rounding out the quintessential sans serif design.

Timeless and neutral, the Neue Helvetica family is now even more versatile.

The designs are available as desktop fonts or Web fonts from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service. Learn more about – and license – the Neue Helvetica Compressed collection of typefaces.

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 Ryan Arruda

Here’s a listing of the top 100 most used fonts from the Fonts.com Web Fonts service for April 2014:

Neue Helvetica
Trade Gothic
Avenir Next
Univers
Avenir
Proxima Nova
Frutiger
Gill Sans
Futura
DIN Next
Helvetica
Linotype Univers
Museo Sans
Museo Slab
Century Gothic
ITC Avant Garde Gothic
Klint
Chaparral
Arial
ITC Lubalin Graph
Eurostile LT
Rockwell
Azbuka
Myriad
ITC Legacy Serif
Soho Gothic
ITC Caslon No. 224
Neo Sans
VAG Rounded
ITC Century
Univers Next
Motoya Birch
Optima
ITC Franklin Gothic
ITC Legacy Square Serif
Aachen
Linotype Sketch
Neue Frutiger
Trade Gothic Next
Swiss 721
Gill Sans Infant
ITC Charter
Frutiger Next
Neue Helvetica eText
Swift
Bookman Old Style
Bodoni LT
ITC Officina Serif
Lexia
ITC Officina Sans
ITC Eras
Calibri
Humanist 777
Adobe Garamond
Auriol
PMN Caecilia
Linotype Didot
ITC Conduit
Trade Gothic Next Soft Rounded
Soho
Helvetica World
Rotis Sans Serif
Minion
ITC Stone Informal
ITC American Typewriter Hellenic
Georgia Pro
Bembo
ITC American Typewriter
Brandon Grotesque
Droid Sans Mono
Akko
Egyptienne F
C Hei 2 PRC
ITC Fenice
Eurostile Next
M Elle PRC
C Hei PRC
M Lady PRC
Slate
M Stiff Hei PRC
Monotype News Gothic
Droid Serif
Monotype Goudy
Novecento
Baskerville Classico
Adobe Caslon
Orator
Delima
Neuzeit Office Soft Rounded
Caslon Classico
Copperplate Gothic
Glypha
Francker
Twentieth Century
Bodoni
Rotis II Sans
Comic Strip
Droid Sans
Perpetua
Sackers Gothic


by David Harned

Dynamic Subsetting

Seems like things on the Web are always getting faster. With customers demanding more speed and an increasing percentage of traffic coming from mobile devices, speed is paramount. Improvements can be made by reducing the size of data that is transferred or by improving the efficiency of a system’s processes. We’ve employed both of these techniques to drastically boost our patent-pending dynamic subsetting technology. I’ll share some results later on. But for now, let’s just say we were very pleased – even startled – with the results and think you will be, too.

What is Dynamic Subsetting?

If your content is written in English, German, Spanish, French or other languages that use the Latin alphabet, you may be unaware of the challenges faced by those working with content in East Asian languages. While most Latin fonts have file sizes under 100KB, the broad character sets of the Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese and Korean writing systems can push these fonts into the MBs – making Web fonts impractical for sites using these languages.Dynamic Subsetting

Dynamic subsetting resolves this issue by evaluating the content on the page and creating a font on the fly containing only the characters needed to display the content on the page. This process can cut the file size down to kilobytes. The technology uses our JavaScript publishing method – using a single line of code on your pages — and is included with your Fonts.com Web Fonts subscription .

Server-side processing changes

This technology has helped open up a world of typographic possibilities for those developing sites in Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Over the last few months, we have been working to make this experience better — we have refactored and optimized our systems, and have seen some amazing improvements including gains of over 90% on server-side processing with Traditional Chinese fonts. This equated to a 61% speed gain in download speed to the page.

Of course these figures are based on our internal testing, but we’re confident you’ll notice the improvement as well. Take a look:

If you’re already using dynamic subsetting, we invite you to share your experience in the comments.

Great type makes sites stand out