We briefly talked about typography (you know, words as visuals) in a class the other day, and it gave me a desire to round up some of the excellent online resources I’ve recently found concerning typefaces and typography for design (websites and portfolios specifically).
First, you might want to read this “What Font Should I Use?” article on Smashing Magazine to start off on the right foot. If you’re still stuck, you can always try Pentagram’s ‘what type are you?’ interactive quiz. Next, Smashing Magazine has an excellent article about Best Practices of Combining Typefaces. Hoefler & Frere-Jones also has a quick little explanation of four ways to combine typefaces, but it’s also clearly an opportunity for them to advertise their own fonts (which are beautiful and too expensive for me!). It’s important to think about what common fonts there are on Windows and Mac computers if you’re designing a website and aren’t planning to use a service like TypeKit or Google Fonts (I’ve found that I like to stick with basic fonts that I can display on the internet AND use in my portfolio, so it’s a little more consistent). You can easily use TypeKit on your WordPress blog if you’re using one of the compatible themes!
But wait, there’s so much more!
Typography for Lawyers, is indeed intended for lawyers, but has helpful other tips like – don’t underline things unless they are a hyperlink – and it also explains a lot of the basics of typography like – what is kerning, anyway?
How To: Make Your Web Typography Better has eight simple pointers to think about
Type-a-file makes CSS typography easier; creates well-designed style sheets to add to your websites (err, I’m still a little confused about this because I like the idea of what they’re talking about, but I’m really still very much an amateur when it comes to coding and websites, so as helpful as this might be for everyone else, I’m still sort of lost….I don’t even know if I can upload files to my server since I’m not doing any hosting with my domain? Oh well. I’ll figure it out sooner or later!)
And finally, I recently found this list of ONE HUNDRED educational resources about web typography on Smashing Magazine and I haven’t even begun to look through it all yet!
PS. The top photo is a sample from David Carson’s website – he’s a really interesting graphic designer and he was featured in the movie Helvetica, a documentary by Gary Hustwit about typography, graphic design and ‘visual culture’ – looking at how type can infiltrate our daily lives. I would reccomend both Helvetica and Objectified, another movie by Gary Hustwit, to EVERYONE – not just designers – because they do inspect how design affects our daily lives regardless of occupation and interests. Did you know that most road signs, nutritional labels, and maps are created with Helvetica? Amazingly interesting.