Type Faces: A Witty Phrase Here

Posted: March 25, 2014 in Uncategorized

I rather enjoyed this section on Type-Faces.  Mainly because I think of how much of an over-sight they play in our writing.  And whilst I did appreciate the sections in the reading about the printing press, it was the bits about the lettering that I liked the most.


In my breif stint as a graphic design major, I worked on some logo design for myself and some “clients.”  My clients were really friends and friends of friends, but I got money from them, so take that.  I am an active gigging musician across the valley, and as such, I come across a lot of interesting logos for groups, bands, and other companies.  The BEST one (and by best I mean worsts) are the bands all about being heavy and brutal dudes.  I was always taught that a good logo is readable and/or recognizable from a distance OR when printed small.  Let’s stick strictly to text-based logos.   The U for our school is a great example.  BMW, McDonalds, Lay’s, Coke, The Beatles… we can read these even when printed small, like on a menu.  Keep those in mind when you click this link —>  http://www.rottentomatoes.com/quiz/the-most-unreadable-metal-band-logos/


Haha, oh yeah.  Those are some GREAT type faces.


Readability is important as it catches the eye.  Being distinct plays a role along side readability.  That’s why I am glad Garfield discussed the Men are from Mars book.  The type faces are used to give the fonts gender, but it doesn’t take away from what the text is saying.  At the same time, these type faces are distinct.  We don’t notice the ways the letters are shaped and think “OH, I got this confused for Janet Evanovich/Dean Koontz/The Bible, stupid generic type-face!”  We see the lettering and instantly recognize the book.


We have these ideas of how text should function based on how it looks.  Serif fonts, like Times New Roman, create almost an underline to the words.  This allows the eye to follow it much easier, hence its use in books and articles.  Sans Serif is less formal, and not used much in formal writing.  But what happens when these expectations are violated?


In his now famous letter, NBA owner Dan Gilbert typed a letter to fans of the team in the summer of 2010.  That was when his Super Mega Star player LeBron James left the team (without warning) in an over-the-top fashion (prime time on ESPN)  to play for another team.  The letter received the most criticism for A) Being Rude, B) Poor Language, C) All of the Above, D) The Type Face was Comic Sans?

Well, I’ll let you decide. http://www.geekosystem.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/dan-gilbert-letter.gif

  1. runnermom6 says:

    Great response. I agree I liked the Garfield piece. I especially liked his introduction and play on words. Your example for Ohio was great. Certainly the Type Face name Comic Sans is fitting, especially the name. In a way it makes the letter more personal which possible made people feel invaded by this man’s contempt.
    I also liked the example of “Men Are From Mars”. I hadn’t ever thought about the type face and it’s role in portraying masculine and feminine voice.

  2. You make a very good point, if you can’t read a logo it doesn’t do anybody any good. Fonts make a huge difference in not only readability but also in the perception of a claim. Also your outside sources are fun and really support your argument.

  3. While it is interesting that we have come to be pre programed through education to use certain fonts for certain things, I think that it is best this way. Verily, our educators and scholars have gotten this one right and it shouldn’t be violated. I see that certain type faces are used for certain things, and in graphic design, yes, you may want to have some kind of font to help convey some message tot he audience. But, I maintain the argument that comic sans is not only an embarrassment to the person who is writing, but an embarrassment to post modernism and the written word in general. Anyone who uses the font Comic Sans should be shunned and forced to repeat the third grade.

  4. parapluie123 says:

    I love your example of the unreadable metal band names. It is too true that some branding/logo making just goes horribly wrong. I agree with your point (and the article) that readability is the most important thing when it comes to type face. Thanks for posting the link to the letter as well!

  5. I really enjoyed a reading and discussion focused on something so simple yet so complex at type faces. When it comes to a document alone, or in our info design graphics case a memo. The type face can in some circumstances be the only chance one has to be unique, create a point or catch the audiences eye! I am guilty of finding myself in the norm of ” times new roman” in fear of making my paper too abstract and taking away from the message. However, after looking more deeply at fonts found elsewhere other than the 20 saved on my laptop, i found that you can really personalize your writing and voice both simply and drastically! If anyone needs some great fonts go on over to dafont.com !!

  6. violentparty says:

    I enjoyed how you mention bands, and their attempt to have the most illegible name. It is all too true that entities attempt to be different, and fail miserably. In my own post I didn’t make the distinction between a font, and a typeface. Perhaps I missed it in the reading or should have known in the first place. Good post.

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