Last Build Date: Sat, 29 Apr 2017 15:10:10 +0000
Mon, 27 Feb 2017 11:44:44 +0000
Typography is a primary element of composition. Being a designer, I pay a lot of attention to its quality. Operating Photoshop is easy for me; however, to level up my skills, I am always learning to work with letters, using my hands, without any computer programs.
The first time I took a calligraphy course was about a year ago, and the decision was quite hard. I was sure that it would be painstaking and that I would need excellent handwriting to learn this art. How mistaken I was!
The post The Art Of Calligraphy: Getting Started And Lessons Learned appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Tue, 14 Feb 2017 09:01:50 +0000
The sharing spirit in the design community is remarkable. Designers spend countless hours on side projects and without asking for anything in return, they share their creations freely with the community. Just to give something back, to inspire and to support fellow folks in their work.
When working on a project yourself, freebies like these can come to the rescue when you have to get along on a tight budget, but, more often that that, they simply are the missing piece that’ll make your design complete.
Tue, 22 Mar 2016 15:35:09 +0000
Editor’s Note: Today we are pleased to feature the new and free font families Yrsa and Rasa by David Březina and Anna Giedryś and their story behind the design process.
Yrsa and Rasa are two open-source type families published by Rosetta with generous financial support from Google. The fonts support over 92 languages in Latin script and 2 languages in Gujarati script. The family currently has 5 weights. They were designed and produced by Anna Giedryś and me and they are now released and ready for download.
The post Free Font Release: Yrsa And Rasa Available For Download appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Tue, 08 Mar 2016 14:26:48 +0000
It’s the small details that make a project shine. Solid typography, well-crafted with attention and care is one of them. A harmonious visual rhythm, typographic subtleties like soft caps, margin outdents or the correct use of hyphens and dashes — there are a lot of things that add up to it.
In practice, however, publishing on the web is supposed to be fast, and the little details are often overlooked, which is a pity, because they are not only pleasing to the eye but also improve the reading experience.
The post Tools And Resources For A More Meaningful Web Typography appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Thu, 11 Feb 2016 23:30:33 +0000
Typography can make all the difference. However, if your project has to get along on a very limited budget and you need to rely on free fonts, good ones are never easy to find. Luckily, we stumbled across some real gems lately.
The following fonts can be downloaded for free and are bound to give your project — both private and/or commercial — a classy finishing touch.
Thu, 12 Nov 2015 15:45:22 +0000
For perhaps the first time since the original Macintosh, we can get excited about using system UI fonts. They’re an interesting, fresh alternative to web typography — and one that doesn’t require a web-font delivery service or font files stored on your server. How do we use system UI fonts on a website, and what are the caveats?
System UI fonts being amazing kind of snuck up on us. Google has been toiling away at Roboto with great success (including regular updates), Apple made a splash with San Francisco, and Mozilla asked renowned type designer Erik Spiekermann to create Fira Sans.
The post Using UI System Fonts In Web Design: A Quick Practical Guide appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Tue, 20 Oct 2015 18:29:28 +0000
There’s more to spaces than the key you instinctively hit with one of your thumbs between words. Let’s find out what other space characters there are, what their heritage is, and how they can be useful today.
What you see below are two tweets. In one of them, Paul Irish will be notified of my taunt. In the other one, he’ll be completely oblivious. What’s the difference between the two? Read on!
Wed, 27 May 2015 13:02:52 +0000
Having the ability to set legible body copy is an absolute must, and we’ve come a long way with web typography since the dawn of web design. However, I feel like we have allowed the lack of variety prior to the rise of web fonts to dampen our creativity now that thousands of web fonts are at our disposal. Have usability conventions and the web’s universality steered us away from proper art direction? Have we forgotten about art direction altogether? I believe so.
As designers, we can achieve much more with type, and with just a little more thought and creativity, we can finally start to take full advantage of the type systems available. Let’s look at ways we can push typographic design on the web further, beyond the status quo of today.
The post Benton Modern, A Case Study On Art-Directed Responsive Web Typography appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Thu, 02 Apr 2015 14:01:05 +0000
Customers and clients cannot physically touch the products that online designers create, nor can they smell, hear or taste them. One of the important factors in a customer’s decision of whether to use a product is usually the brand’s visual presence, which can help a product stand out from the rest of what the market has to offer. Upon taking a closer look, it doesn't take long to see that good typography is involved.
Like all type designers, Akira Kobayashi believes that good typography reinforces the meaning of the text. He has a background in art and calligraphy and has been a freelance type designer for 18 years. Originally from Japan, Akira is a frequent speaker at type conferences and workshops in Europe, the Americas and Asia, and he has served as a judge in prestigious international type design competitions.
Mon, 22 Dec 2014 14:12:09 +0000
Choosing typefaces is an integral part of every web design project. With thousands of typefaces available from hosting services such as Typekit, as well an ever-improving collection of free fonts available, there has never been a better time to be a typography-obsessed web designer.
One could easily argue that nothing affects a design more than typography. And good typography starts with choosing an appropriate typeface. But can having too much choice be a bad thing? With more choices, we have more opportunities to make bad decisions.
The post The Good, The Bad And The Great Examples Of Web Typography appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Mon, 29 Sep 2014 12:51:29 +0000
As we refine our methods of responsive web design, we’ve increasingly focused on measure (another word for “line length”) and its relationship to how people read.
The popularization of the “ideal measure” has led to advice such as “Increase font size for large screens and reduce font size for small screens.” While a good measure does improve the reading experience, it’s only one rule for good typography. Another rule is to maintain a comfortable font size.
The post Size Matters: Balancing Line Length And Font Size In Responsive Web Design appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Mon, 02 Jun 2014 15:18:52 +0000
Handwritten text shows a personal side of its author, a side that is not easy to put into words and that contrasts with the standardized look of digital communication. This contrast and “aura” is perhaps what makes handwriting fonts so popular. As a typographer, I love handwriting, and in this article I’d like to share a hands-on overview of my creation process of a handwriting font.
Over the past four years, I’ve completed three typefaces inspired by handwriting. I started with the digitization of Albert Einstein’s handwriting and continued with Conspired Lovers, a font based on my own love-letter writing. In 2013, I ran a Kickstarter campaign to fund the creation of a font based on Sigmund Freud’s handwriting. The public interest in the project was overwhelming, and the Sigmund Freud typeface became the first typeface to be reviewed in the Wall Street Journal.
The post Hands On The Sigmund Freud Typeface: Making A Font For Your Shrink appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Thu, 20 Mar 2014 12:29:23 +0000
Arabic calligraphy was originally a tool for communication, but with time, it began to be used in architecture, decoration and coin design. Its evolution into these major roles was a reflection of the early Muslims’ need to avoid, as their beliefs required, figures and pictorials that were used as idols before Islam was established in the Arabian Peninsula.
While the Arabic tribes preferred to memorize texts and poetry, the first Muslims tried to document their holy book (Qur’an Kareem) using the scripts that we’ll look at in this article. In order to understand how these scripts developed into the beautiful and complex shapes we know today, we have to understand the history of Arabic calligraphy.
Wed, 12 Mar 2014 15:40:04 +0000
Once thought of as amateurish by professional designers, free and open-source fonts have gone through something of a renaissance in just the last few years. The quality of available free fonts has increased dramatically. To be frank, free fonts don't have a good reputation, and often they are knock-offs of thoroughly crafted, already established typefaces. So is it time for professional designers to take a second look?
Early in my design career, around 2003, I wanted to purchase the font DIN for a project at work. My manager promptly dismissed the idea of paying for a font and instead handed me a CD that had “5,000 free fonts” on it, saying “This CD has every font a designer could possibly need. No need to waste money buying fonts!”
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 14:58:26 +0000
Back in the days when he was a student, Portuguese graphic and type designer Natanael Gama started to play with glyphs — as a way to discover typography. Doodling around, he created Exo, a font which he released for free in a Kickstarter project. The project turned out to be quite successful. Exo became so popular that Natanael did a complete redesign. [Links checked February/20/2017]
It was two years ago. Today, Natanael is no longer a student and Exo has evolved into what we are happy to present to you today: Exo 2.0, an elegant, contemporary geometric sans serif typeface.
The post Exo 2.0, A Contemporary Geometric Sans Serif Font For Free appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Tue, 15 Oct 2013 11:49:10 +0000
In this article, we’ll take you on a thought-provoking journey through carefully selected Web designs. Certainly, these websites have some captivating interactivity; however, the selection of type and the typographic styling and spacing are the reasons why we chose them for this piece.
In the context of typography, considering composition and grid structure is also important. Composition and grid structure are vital factors in effective communication with type.
The post Type Makes A Difference: An Exploration Of Type-Focused Websites appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Fri, 27 Sep 2013 10:34:54 +0000
When you buy something, I bet you want it to work. Heck, even if you use something for free — maybe borrowed from a friend — I bet you want it to work. No one prefers hiking boots that are too tight (or too loose), a car that shimmies when you drive faster than 40 miles an hour, or a kitchen knife that can’t cut a tomato.
And Web designers don’t prefer fonts that don’t fit a project, fall apart in different browsers or can’t be used in a mock-up. We also don’t like wading through all of the fonts that won’t work for us in order to find the ones that will. It takes precious time away from other tasks and responsibilities.
Wed, 19 Jun 2013 14:09:29 +0000
In the first installment of this two-part series on type classification, we covered the basics of type classification — the various methods people have used, why they are helpful, and a brief survey of type history, classifying and identifying typefaces along the way. Unfortunately, we only got as far as Roman (traditional serif) typefaces and the early-19th century.
Now we’re back for part 2! Part 2 will primarily cover sans typefaces, with a nod to display typefaces and other less common categories, as well as address a few of the questions people have about whether type classification is helpful and necessary.
Fri, 17 May 2013 02:25:49 +0000
Good typography has always been a defining aspect of effective Web design, and this holds true especially for websites in which the emphasis is on presenting a large amount of content — specifically, articles, news and stories.
Whether for a magazine or international newspaper, the designer of any website that distributes a lot of content has always had to consider typographic details as seriously and thoroughly as a print designer would. In 2009, we conducted a survey of then current typographic practices. Since then, responsive design techniques have clearly gained momentum and established their place in the landscape of CSS layout.
The post Typographic Design Patterns And Current Practices (2013 Edition) appeared first on Smashing Magazine.
Wed, 27 Feb 2013 17:14:06 +0000
As of today we’re pleased to announce Typeplate, a free-range and open-source typographic starter kit that will hopefully help you build beautiful, text-rich websites. The word on the street is that the Web Is 95% Typography, so as we hurtle towards the future, we think there’s still a lot we can learn from five centuries of history.
Typeplate is the result of this exploration of our typographic heritage. We made Typeplate because we weren’t satisfied with existing Web frameworks.