Love-hate relationship with typography

love-hate typography

We all have days where we have a love-hate relationship with typography and choosing the best font.

Although there are no rules (see rule #5 in the article) when it comes to choosing the right font family for your website or printed design, there are still some typography rules, right? Looking through a font website such as google.com/fonts, typekit.com, or dafont.com can be overwhelming even if you consider yourself a typography addict, but this article is factual and can really help you sort out which font will best serve your layout, whether it is your newest website or a logo design. I especially love how the article simplifies font choices and compares it to looking through your closet.

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“What Font Should I Use?”: Five Principles for Choosing and Using Typefaces – Smashing Magazine
For many beginners, the task of picking fonts is a mystifying process. There seem to be endless choices — from normal, conventional-looking fonts to novelty candy cane fonts and bunny fonts — with no way of understanding the options, only never-ending lists of categories and recommendations. Selecting the right typeface is a mixture of firm rules and loose intuition, and takes years of experience to develop a feeling for. Here are five guidelines for picking and using fonts that I’ve developed in the course of using and teaching typography.

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Typography is not just pretty fonts

Web typography is not just pretty fonts

Web typography is not just pretty fonts

A student found passed this article along to me and I think it is a fantastic article dealing with typography on the web. For years web designers were stuck with minimal choices for fonts in order to ensure display compatibility for many end users. Then along came font squirrel and google fonts and now web designers can rejoice in the freedom of their non-web designer counterparts!

But this article hits on some really important points that should be considered by all designers including both print and web. We can’t just fall in love with a font and use it under any circumstances. Typography is an art and as such, thought and deep consideration should be involved when choosing the best font for a specific job.

Simply put, typography is the art and technique of arranging type. It encompasses every possible element that can affect web design, including choice of typeface, color palette, line length, point size, layout, and design integration.”

Continue…

Use Photoshop to create texture and shading

Using texture and shading in Photoshop

Using texture and shading in Photoshop

Using Photoshop, this swan illustration by Andrew Lyons is one of a series of birds he created for a client packaging project.

The aesthetic style the client sought was one of reduced, elegant forms – an approach found in much of his work. Although he often uses photo references as a starting point, Andrew believes it’s important to develop drawings beyond exact representation. Whether he’s illustrating figures or animals, he tries to abstract and simplify to create something that’s both pleasing to the eye and which brings out the inner nature of the subject. Continue…

What is Your Calling Card? Create a Sleek Vertical Business Card in InDesign

Create a unique business card in indesign

There are plenty of ways to impress and make introductions online, but business cards are still very important, and regardless of whatever nascent technology lies ahead, a compelling, tangible business card will always play a key role in attracting new clients. A unique and appealing business card design can help you stand out from the crowd and demonstrate your value and talents in real, tangible terms. One way to make your business card intriguing and different is designing a vertical business card instead of the usual, expected horizontal equivalent. Continue…

Logo Designs for Inspiration

Collection of the best logo designs of 2012.

Collection of the best logo designs of 2012.

Designing your company logo, colors, and fonts can be one of the most important branding choices a company makes. This list by Awwwards includes some of the more creative logo designs and fonts I’ve seen in a long time. Using fonts to show what a company provides a customer a quick and creative glance at what a company is all about. So the question is what is your logo design and/or font saying about you?

Achieving a well designed logo requires really hard work and being up to date with the latest trends in design. It’s probably the best way of establishing brand identity, making an impact on customers and ensuring that they’ll remember your site and come back for a second visit. Most logos communicate ideas, for instance the kind of quality services a company can provide for its customers.

Today we’ve gathered 99 creative logo designs for your inspiration, hope you find them useful.

See all the logos here: 99 Creative Logo Designs for Inspiration.

5 Things to Avoid when Branding

As students, branding is something that constantly thought about both in relation to selling ourselves as Graphic Communication majors and when thinking of companies logos and branding packages.

FedEx logo uses negative space to illustrate the company's services in a positive way.

In the article below written by Tara Horner for Design Festival, she explores what elements don’t work in branding and why. And she has some really good points. Make sure you get to the bottom of the article for some serious giggles.

Have you ever found yourself in a brand design project that has taken on a life of its own and you’re just along for the ride? Well I have, and it can be a frustrating experience, especially if your clients or colleagues are passing on obvious opportunities for improvement and overlooking significant mistakes.

In some cases, the client has an old logo that they just want me to “clean up” or “update” — this is rarely as effective as building a completely new brand, and ironically, it’s often harder. In other cases, you have so many hands in the pot and so many ideas rushing around that it’s impossible to get any kind of consensus — this tends to end up with hodge-podge design work that stitches everyone’s different ideas together into a “frankenbrand” monstrosity.

Regardless of how you end up in these overwhelming situations, there are a couple of ways that you can present your concerns in a rational, logical way that business people can understand. I’ve found that it helps to both visually illustrate their mistakes as well as articulate exactly what’s wrong from a business perspective. So, here are some classic issues that I’ve seen crop up consistently in branding and logo design, as well as my methods for leading the client toward a more focused, effective brand.

Continue reading full article here:

5 Shapes, Symbols, and Concepts to Avoid in Your Brand – DesignFestival.

When a line is not a line

For the designer, a line is not a line. A box is not a box. A gradient is not a gradient. An arrow is not an arrow. A sharp or rounded corner is never simply that. And only in the most mundane and pedestrian circumstances is any color used in design actually representative of the color itself. In essence, nothing is what it would seem to be.

If you actually believe that designing content means you should add a line or a box or a gradient for its own sake, you’re no longer designing—you’re cluttering. Be careful.

Once you have agreed to direct your efforts toward a specific design purpose, you make an error if you simply cast ornaments upon the content. On the contrary; you are sworn to eliminate everything contextually contrary or that gets in the way of communication. Lines and boxes and arbitrarily chosen ornaments do not romance or enhance the content or its purpose at communication. Arbitrary structure only ever gets in the way.

As the designer, your purpose is to realize order, clarity, enhancement, and contextually appropriate theme for the content so that its message may better be conveyed. Your purpose is to discover and accomplish the seamless reintegration of that which is obviously missing from the message found within or required by the raw content.

These required components may be few or manifold, but lines, arrows, gradients, boxes, specific text decorations, or corners of a particular character for their own sake are surely never among the missing elements. For every element that is not amongst the raw content and that you decide to include in the design, ask yourself: what is its purpose? What is this element representative of and how does that enhance the content, the context, or the message?…

Andy Rutledge – The Design Lesson

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How do you know when your logo design is finished?

Is My Logo Design Really Finished? – DesignFestival
Every single business across the web and the world should have a logo, because it represents your company’s identity — a critical branding element. You want people to know what kind of company you are…

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