01 Mar A Typography Primer
Typography is essentially print styles. Artists and graphic designers and writers see styles everywhere but you may not realize the impact typography has on you and your business message or design intent. However, at Ratio7, we are trained to advise you on which typography style supports and amplifies the message you actually want to send.
Generally speaking, there are two broad categories of typography: serif and sans serif, serif being the little “feet” that letters rest on and sans meaning “without”. The most common of these two types are Times New Roman (serif) and Arial (sans serif).
In the beginning of the Web days it was felt by most copywriters and web designers/developers that digital medium was best displayed in sans serif font. In fact, you could kind of identify an amateur if they were using a serif type on a website. Boy! Have those days changed!
Generally speaking, serif fonts like Times New Roman or Courier are considered more formal, weighty, serious and traditional. Sans serif, obviously, are considered more casual, cleaner, “cutting-edge” and youthful. However, as soon as you state that, there is an example of someone who has used the opposite-like Ratio7!
The newest trend, seen on sites like Wired.com, is to pair the two: sans serif for headers and contant wtih serif for titles. Yet, if you pick up the magazine itself you would likely see more serif fonts because it is in print.
Before stepping out on a branding path, or if you are considering revisiting your site or graphic presence, be sure to discuss typography with your designer. If you want a bit more (actually a lot more) typography education, you might check out the documentary “Helvetica”.