After a year of anticipation and long waiting to see the new design, and well… It’s been leaked a week early.
The redesign was scheduled to be released on June 10th, 2019. Firefox started pumping up their users by releasing a teaser video on Twitter explaining why people should use their browser, as opposed to others, and the benefits that come along with using Firefox.
In the comment section of the video, you’ll see, Sean Martell, Firefox’s communication design leader, posted a picture. And to the standard by-passer, it’s just a cool picture of Mozilla’s new merch. Right? Wrong.
Look closely and amongst the merch, you’ll see the new, sleek design all over the place.
We really dig this new, modern design that Firefox has come out with. The color gradient is similar to the old one, and it looks like the fox got a little grooming on his coat as well.
Also, did you notice that blue-green logo? It’s a big change, but it looks amazing, and we’re living for it.
The logo is still very recognizable and distinguishable and is not as shocking as some other logo redesigns we have seen in the past. It’s almost always a great idea when redesigning your logo to try to keep some original elements from your first logo so that your users and clients will still recognize your logo from a crowd.
This time, the fox is looking toward us, as opposed to the past fox that was looking away from us. It almost gives you the sensation that the fox is looking out for you.
But although the logo redesign is amazing, that doesn’t change their number of monthly users which has continued to decline over time. But Mozilla is not about to quit. They’ve come up with amazing safety and user privacy features that completely distinguish themselves from Google Chrome, their biggest competitor.
Getting back to Mozilla’s new logo design though, if you remember, Tim Murray, Mozilla’s creative director, came up with two different styling systems for their redesign last year; system 1 and system 2 And to us, it seems like they went forward with the ideas of system one, and we’re thrilled about it.
With its clean, sleek, and stylized graphics, it still embraces the current flat design trend, instead of a displaying a skeuomorphic design. So new the logo is still pushing the same flat design trend as it did before, staying true to its original design.
Mozilla still hasn’t commented on the early leak, but all in all, we are happy it was released early because we were impatiently waiting to see what Mozilla new logo would look like.
If you’re planning on a redesign, we have 10 features of a good logo that you need to consider and implement during you’re redesign process.
We want to know you think about Mozilla’s potential new logo. Was the leak intentional? Was it actually just a PR move?
Let us know down in the comments below what you think and let’s discuss the new design, particularly the green one.
The past few articles covered four of the most important categories of fonts: modern fonts, classic fonts, retro fonts, and vintage fonts. For today’s article, we won’t focus on a single category, but we will list the best typography fonts out there. What does this mean? Our professional designers have put up a list of the fonts they use the most and like the most. This list will include all kinds of fonts, from script, serif, sans serif, calligraphic, geometric fonts, to rounded, slab serif, and handwritten.
If the word FREE is music to your ears, then you better expect to see the best of the best free typography fonts cataloged below. Most of these amazing typography examples come from awwwards.com, so show your appreciation for their hard work by sharing, liking, and commenting in the comment section below. Let’s get started!
In the past few articles on Web Design Ledger, we tried to bring into your attention some of the most important categories of fonts:
modern, classic, and retro. Today we will continue with another important category: Vintage Fonts. Designers say that, in order for a fashion product, be it clothing, font, or a decorative piece, to become “vintage” they need at least 40-years-period from the time they were released. Based on that definition, we could consider anything older than 40 as being vintage, or new products that have the vintage vibe, well, not vintage. So in order to make peace with everybody, the fonts our professional designers have chosen for this article, are exclusively based on their looks, not on the time they were created.
What particularities do vintage fonts have? you might be wondering. Well, as dictionaries tell us, vintage means “something from the past of high quality, especially something representing the best of its kind.” My question then is: are vintage fonts the best? They may very well be for some. Usually, vintage fonts stand out because of their complex details, exquisite calligraphy, and versatile looks.
Keeping these details in mind, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite vintage fonts, both free and premium, so you can stay stocked up.
Fisherman Fonts is perfect for branding projects, logos, wedding designs, social media posts, product packaging, product designs, labels, photography, watermarks, invitations, stationery and any project that needs an ocean and beach feel.
The variety of fonts available online at the moment includes Retro Fonts. From vintage to modern, from fancy to minimalist, we try to include all styles in our blog posts here at Web Design Ledger. But for today’s article, we have the pleasure of mentioning some of the coolest retro fonts you can find online, both free and paid. Why did we choose the retro font as the star of our article today? Because they have the ability to take us back in time, in an era we have never lived, but now we are able to, through design.
Of course, some of the fonts we are about to mention below have been designed in the past two decades. Inspired by the depth that this trend can give to a graphics project, font artists haven’t stopped giving retro fonts the attention they deserve. Retro fonts are characterized by colorful details, bold letters, unique shapes, and other cool details we are about to discover throughout this article.
What does retro mean?
The word “RETRO” comes from Latin and it means backward. We need to look back in history into the font’s evolution to find these amazing creations. We will start off with the best retro fonts of the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, ending with the ’80s.
So fasten your seatbelts, we are about to dive into this amazing trend that keeps being fashionable even 50, 60, 70 years later.
retro fonts ’50s
The retro fonts of 1950 have a cinematic look. When I take a look at any of the fonts below, images of old movies come to my mind. Many of the movies created in this period used this style of fonts for their posters. The fonts of the ’50s tend to be more dramatic due to their bold characteristics. Today, we can use the ’50s fonts in packaging that requires a vintage look, restaurant branding, business cards for different companies, and in any project you think it would do the magic.
The ’60s fonts will get your attention from the first sight. They might not be love at first sight, but it will be interest at first sight for sure. These retro fonts are often used on billboards even today. The retro fonts of the ’60s feature colorful details, another characteristic that makes it steal the show. These can be used in retro games, movie posters set in the ’60s, obviously, catchy packaging, book covers, and many others.
The fonts of the ’70s are fresh, yet nostalgic, many created for throwback posters or with the sole purpose of helping achieve the look and feel of the era. Many of the ’70s fonts feature retro hand-lettering from the ’70s, added with a touch of pop style, giving them a unique and elegant look. The fonts listed below are best suited for apparel graphics, logos, posters, and fun times, as well as invitations, flyers, greeting cards, product packaging, book cover, printed quotes, cover album, movie, etc
The retro fonts of the ’80s begin to evolve into more detailed fonts. We can now observe shadows, neon shades, and tracing elements. The letters are bold, with a strong personality and new features. They are super dynamic, many featuring 3D effects. These amazing fonts are great for any summer projects, due to their bright and joyful looks.
The professional designers that have chosen these next classic fonts have different opinions on what makes a font stay up to date, even decades after it was created. While some might not look classic to you, they all feature elements that are a trend today and will always be a trend. The font is the frame of any text, you see it and read it, but the font can distract you from the main idea if not chosen with care. This is where classic fonts come into play. Their purpose is to keep the reader’s focus where it should be: on the meaning of the text.
Classic Fonts, due to their simple aspect, are used more than any other categories of fonts. They are versatile and easy to incorporate into any project that is oriented towards offering information. This should not stop you from using them in other types of projects. They have the power to offer a logo, a business card, a packaging, a. o., an unforgettable look. Simple doesn’t mean mediocre, therefore, a simple font can and will always stand out in the crowd.
Our designers at Web Design Ledger have carefully gathered 40 of the Best Classic Fonts so that you can use this resource your own benefit. We have to mention that some of the fonts below are free classic fonts, and some are paid. Let’s get started.
CLASSIC SERIF FONTS
Each classic serif font features sleek lines, delicate serifs, and elegant details. Therefore, they are perfect if used as headers as they create a great visual effect. Such fonts are imposing, yet elegant, authoritative but not strident. Moreover, they have a gentle personality, not as strong as the script classic fonts, for instance. Here are some great ways you can use classic serif fonts: on magazine covers, newspaper headlines, disc packaging, urban companies logo, billboard texts, and others.
The classic sans serif fonts look a little bit more technical than the romantic serif fonts, but still very versatile and unique. However, Sans Serif fonts do have a more modern aspect that will always be a trend. A sans serif font will never steal the attention from the text, but will remain neutral. Therefore, the reader will be given the opportunity to form a personal opinion. Here are some great ways you can use classic sans serif fonts: in books, instruction brochures, minimalist designs, packaging, official letters and documents, movie titles.
Classic Vintage Fonts are a trend now more than ever. They give any project a natural touch, an old-school vibe, while still keeping the text stylish. Classic Vintage Fonts are associated with photography and many photographers seem to use them for their logos. Moreover, these fonts have a warm, homey voice, giving any graphics project a charming aspect. Here are some of the best ways you can use them: amazing in packing of any kind, logos and business cards for businesses that deal with people directly, fiction book covers, wedding invitations, and others.
Because most Classic Cursive Fonts are handwritten, they have the most humane looks. The cursive font will always be your ally when you want to transmit emotions, feelings, attitudes, states of being through text. Classic Cursive Fonts have the ability to empower words, therefore they feature a strong personality. While the range of projects you can use script font is rather narrow, there are plenty of options to choose from. You can use classic cursive fonts in the packaging of personal, even intimate products, intimate invitations, love letters, history-related projects, posters, stamps, tags for elegant clothing, and others.
Digital design technology waits on no one. It’s forever changing, and web designers are forever having to seek ways to keep up with it. If there are any “evergreen” tools and resources that keep pace with the latest trends they are few. Except for upgrades and updates, of course.
The latest tools, apps, and resources can cope with the latest design trends. They are not difficult to come by. There is, in fact, an embarrassment of riches. So many that finding the right ones can actually be a challenge in itself.
Not all of them are top-of-the-line of course, and the best of the bunch is what you want and deserve. To help you out, we’ve put in place this nice little collection of top tools, apps, and resources. They’ll individually or collectively make your job easier. They help you keep up with the times and maintain a competitive edge.
Elementor is a prime example of a WordPress website building tool that can do so many things and do them so much better than its competitors. Aside from its website design capabilities, businesses look to Elementor because of the way it can speed up design workflow processes and at the same time produce a maximum ROI.
If you can visualize it, you can build it if you have this premium web-building tool at your fingertips. Limitations and constraints that are common to many WordPress themes simply don’t exist with Elementor. Thanks to a powerful drag and drop editor, a ton of useful widgets, and hundreds of templates, you can produce an attractive, professional-looking page in minutes and a complete website within hours.
Since Elementor can be used with virtually any theme and any plugin it gives you almost unlimited flexibility. The user interface is a pleasure to work with, and several features like the Pop Up builder and Hover and Scroll animations allow you to do things that you once would have assigned to a developer.
AND CO from Fiverr is an invoicing software that saves you time so you can focus on growing your business. Its automated system helps you stay on top of your cash flow by reminding you when it’s time to send invoices, notifying you when they are viewed by a client, and letting you know when they are past due. With AND CO you can accept online payments by credit card, check, ACH, or PayPal and have the payments automatically deposited in your bank account.
AND CO also features a time tracking system which integrates smoothly with your invoicing, so that invoices can automatically be created based on the hours you’ve tracked at the end of a project, at specified project milestones, or periodically for customers or clients that are on a subscription basis. Relevant files or documents can be attached to invoices if you wish. With additional features like expense tracking, proposals, contracts, and task management, AND CO is the one app you need to run your freelance business.
Given its many advanced features, most users are led to believe that everything needed to conduct business is already included in this real estate application. The Houzez design team apparently thought otherwise as, based on user feedback, they have recently added a host of new options and features designed to give realtors and real estate agencies extended capabilities and greater flexibility.
The old favorites like the listings options, advanced search capabilities, and the property management system are still there. More listings options and formats have been added together with listings sorting by data, price, and property location, property status, and luxury home and special property showings scheduling.
Houzez is extremely easy to use and can be customized to fit an agencies business model and brand.
Businesses that rely heavily on customers booking appointments will like the time and money they can be saved with this powerful and award-winning plugin. Amelia automates the entire booking process. It takes appointments 24/7, matches them with employee availability, takes care of cancellations and changes, sends out reminders, and even accepts online payments.
More than 2,000 signed up for Amelia within 6 months after the launch date and gave it an average of 4.85+ user rating.
Uncode has all the functionality you need to build a breathtaking portfolio to showcase your work. You don’t need to create a design from scratch, although you can create your own template if you wish.
The best way to see what Uncode can do for you is to visit the website and view the showcase of user-created websites. You’ll see why this creative multiuse theme is a top all time ThemeForest best-seller with more than 50,000 sales.
TheGem’s customers and Envato will tell you, and ThemeForest will agree, that this amazing multipurpose theme is capable of producing the most creative and beautiful designs you’ll find anywhere. Loading times are exceptionally fast, page speed scores are equally impressive, and customers particularly like TheGem’s 100% flexibility and 100% simplicity.
As far as customer satisfaction and support are concerned, TheGem scores 100% for these as well. The best product performance coupled with the best customer experience is hard to beat.
Because Mobirise is an offline tool you’re not tied down to a specific platform or host during your website building activities. You’ll have total control over your website’s design, and because Mobirise is drag and drop it’s easy to use. Mobirise is 100% free to use for both commercial and personal uses.
There are plenty of website blocks, templates, and themes to work with and thanks to Google Amp and Bootstrap 4 your sites will be crazy-fast.
The wpDataTables plugin offers an all-in-one solution for summarizing data by means of interactive, responsive, and easily editable tables and charts. It doesn’t matter if the amount of data is small or huge, or if the data itself is quite complex. wpDataTables is, in fact, the only table and chart-producing tool of its kind that can easily manage MS SQL, MySQL, and PostgreSQL database information.
Tables and charts are fully customizable, and key data can be color-coded or highlighted.
One of the toughest challenges facing web designers is to personalize their message to a particular audience or audiences. Logic Hop overcomes this challenge by enabling you to provide targeted content to your audiences using display ad and pay per click results, social media posts, and actions visitors take on your site.
Personalized websites perform 200% better on average. Logic Hop can make that happen for you.
The 8b website builder is new, fast, fresh, and futuristic. 8b is also super simple to work with, and you can create beautiful, high-performance websites on your work or home desktop, or on your mobile device when on the go. 8b is free at the moment, a good reason to try it out.
16 slick starter templates and a large selection of website sections are there to help you get any project off to a quick start.
At one time or another you may have come across a font you’d really like to use but had no way of identifying it and had to look for something else. WhatFontIs.com’s automatic AI system will search its database of 550,000 commercial and free fonts and identify that elusive font in seconds.
All that’s required of you is to submit an image (a string of letters is suggested).
This advanced prototyping tool was created to support web and mobile app design. In addition to enabling people to build high-quality, high-fidelity prototypes, Savah features a built-in design workflow and approval system making it a great tool to have for promoting and supporting team and cross-team collaboration.
Savah prototypes can be automatically synced with Dropbox, Google and Sketch App. Check the monthly plan prices. Note that a 30% discount is given on annual plan purchases.
Reducing the number of support tickets saves time and money and makes customers happier – if you go about it right. With HelpJet, you can build a knowledge base that enables customers to quickly find answers to common questions rather than having to stand in line for an answer.
A customer that can get a good answer right away is always going to be a happier customer. You can easily customize HelpJet to fit your brand.
Launching your new website “the Goodie way” simply involves working directly with the developer. All you need to do is provide the details of the design you want and the Goodie folks will produce a high-performance website consisting of squeaky-clean code at a special $999 price.
This can be a perfect deal for owners of small businesses in need of a carefully coded website.
While it’s highly unlikely you’ll need all 15 tools and resources there just might be one, if not two or three you could put to good use immediately. It could be a website building tool that makes it easier for you to keep up with the latest design trends, and with your competition.
Maybe it’s a chart-building plugin that enables you to present data in ways you never could before, or a bundle of a gazillion icons and illustrations.
Finding a modern font is not always an easy job. Simply googling “modern fonts” doesn’t mean you will be given a font that meets your expectations. Why? Because fonts, like fashion, go through a rotating process. That means that many times vintage fonts are seen as modern fonts, and recently created fonts will eventually lose their flair. There are some fonts, though, that seem to never die. Professional designers use them on a daily basis and that says a lot. Some of the modern fonts listed below are edgy, sleek, minimalist, and some are classy and versatile. They all have a strong personality, so pay close attention when choosing any of the following fonts for your projects.
We divided the fonts into two big categories: Serif Fonts and Sans Serif Fonts. Within these two categories, you will find two subcategories which are: clean fonts and script fonts. All fonts have been chosen by WDL’s professional designers. We hope that you will enjoy the list below just as much as we do.
How do you understand when a graphics project is effective? When it’s nice or ugly? Should it be “cute”? Should it be “fashionable”? In short: how do you assess the quality of a project? In this article I really want to talk about this topic, and try to explain how you to really evaluate the quality of a project. In an objective way. Let’s jump right into it!
How do you evaluate the quality of a project in graphic design?
When evaluating the quality of a design project, the subjective aspects and personal tastes certainly play an important role. But it is important to ensure that the evaluation of a project does not depend solely on those two things. In fact, in graphic design, a project is created to communicate a message and get specific results. And those are objective aspects: they do not depend on your personal tastes.
The aesthetic aspect is an important factor, but by itself, it will not tell you if the design is effective or not. To know if your project is a winner, you need to consider the elements of good visual communication and judge the project with respect to them. Well, keeping these things in mind, here are some questions you should ask yourself when evaluating the quality of design.
How to assess the quality of a project: the 4 questions to be asked
1. Does your project achieve its goals?
Let’s start with the basics: what are the goals of the project you are working on? Understanding the objectives of a project is a fundamental step in any graphic design project. This should always be your first step. A good way to understand them is to do a good design brief. We can talk specifics on a design brief another time. For now, let’s keep this train rolling. But what does understanding goals mean?
If it is a logo, for example, that logo aims to represent and communicate a corporate identity. If it’s the landing page of a website, instead, maybe the goal is to convince users to click on the “Buy” button or sign up for a newsletter. And so on. Each graphic project has a specific objective. And if it doesn’t have one, it means it’s not graphic design, but art or decoration. Always check if the target has been achieved! The first step to verify the achievement of the objectives is to make sure that all the relevant information is present to communicate the message you want to communicate.
2. Is the message easy to understand?
Every designer project must help to communicate a certain message correctly. Does your project do it easily? How about immediately? Here are some practical tips for building an effective graphic layout, in which the message is transmitted immediately:
Use a focal point on the page. Such as a large text or a title. Something that catches the viewer’s attention. The important thing is that attention goes to an important and useful element to convey the message. Then choose the focal point carefully!
3. Is it aesthetically pleasing?
Design is made to solve problems through visual solutions. But if those solutions are pleasing to look at, as well as functional, you double the strength of what you communicate, right? Is your project pleasant? Looking good? This is probably the most subjective part of evaluating graphic design. What is appealing to one person might be horrible for another. Different minds, different opinions.
However, generally, already applying the principles of graphic design, one can obtain excellent results in terms of aesthetics. Doing something beautifully does not necessarily mean doing something extremely different from what it already is. Because the result of something deliberately “different” could be too extravagant in the end.
Paul Rand, one of the most important twentieth-century logo designers, said: “Don’t try to be different, try to be good.” Wiser words have perhaps never been spoken. So try to do something that works, even if maybe it’s not something radically different from everything you’ve seen before (which is practically impossible, actually).
Are the aesthetic style and the graphic elements used suitable for the target audience? Most of the time you’re not just planning for yourself, but you’re trying to create a design that appeals to a particular audience. A rainbow color palette is not suitable for a finance website because most customers are looking for a consultant who is reassuring, loyal and trustworthy. Therefore, a more moderate and sober tone may be more appropriate. On the contrary, research shows that children prefer bright colors, so it makes more sense to turn to bright and over the top colors when it comes to children.
4. Is your project original?
Not different in the sense that we have never seen anything like it before, but different in the sense of creativity. The meaning of “originality” depends on the type of design you are dealing with. If it is a logo, it is better to make sure it is as unique as possible, because it is necessary to be able to register the trademark and the trademark application will be rejected if you use a copy of a design. An example of difficulties that can arise from logos that are too similar: the ongoing cause between 3M and Formula 1. It is difficult to create a logo with a simple and distinctive design that does not resemble any other existing design because so many ideas have already been taken and registered as trademarks. If a designer creates a logo that looks similar to an existing design, it’s not necessarily because he copied it, but because there are some logo concepts that are really common and that can be achieved regardless of seeing those designs.
This is why it is necessary to research other designs in your market and avoid designs that are too generic. However, in reality, beyond the logo, the true differentiation of a company over another is in the management of the brand and the complete coordinated image. When instead we talk about simpler elements, like the business card, differentiating oneself is something not very sensible and useless.
Good design is useless if it communicates something wrong
Good design can do great things for a business, but it will not work miracles. It doesn’t matter how good your job as a designer is if the company communicates to the wrong audience. A good design will not be effective if the product is poor or the communication is inadequate, and in the same way, a bad sales performance is not always a consequence of the quality of the design.
There are many ways to measure the performance of a project in the real world, such as A / B tests for web pages, product focus groups, results in social media interactions or sales. However, not everyone can test a project before putting it on the market. In most cases, the customer will trust your judgment. So it is essential that you develop a critical sense of analysis of your work and your projects. Let’s not reinvent the wheel here, maybe just try another way to use it.
Do you want to know the best way to set up any graphic design? How about one of the most useful concepts of all graphic design? In short, do you want to understand how to use graphic grids?
In this article, I want to discuss the topic of graphic grids in detail, through rules, useful examples and design resources that you can download and save on your computer. I will tell you how much of the grids are necessary for the construction of any graphic design, the aesthetic-usability effect and how to build a grid in a harmonious way.
Come on, let’s start that there is so much to talk about!
What are the graphic grids?
A grid, or cage, is essentially a subdivision of the workspace through vertical and horizontal lines aimed at organizing the spaces and defining the elements that will make up a project. Let’s think more specifically, and try to understand why the division and organization of a workspace in graphic design are so fundamental.
The composition of the grids is the basis of graphic design
Whether you work with the press or with the web, on the design of a logo or on the construction of a font, on packaging design or layout, understanding how to compose grids is something you need to consider essential among your skills as a designer. A grid is like an invisible glue that holds the project together and gives it coherence. For many designers, though, grids are an almost unknown thing, especially among the many self-teachers who, of course, were not taught about the theoretical aspect of design and therefore about grid theories.
The fact that a good organization of the project is so often overlooked is one of the reasons why around the streets and on the web we often see projects with bad balances or alignments. This article was born just to try to fill this “hole” in the training of many creatives. Without a starting grid, a project is born already messy.
Always start with a grid
Whatever your project, once thought and sketched (because making sketches is very important), you have to start realizing the final project starting from a grid.
Why? Well, try considering each of your projects as if it were a building. A building without its supporting structure collapses or at least is very unstable when that structure is poorly designed. In addition to being fundamental to creating a supporting structure for your layout, the cages are also extremely important for creating harmony between shapes and relationships. For example, the balance between the white spaces and the text or imagery in the middle of a web page. In fact, a good composition can lead to much more usable projects, as stated in the Aesthetic-Usability Effect theory.
The aesthetic-usability effect
There is a theory about design called the Aesthetic-Usability Effect. Essentially this theory states that when something is designed to be beautiful, consequently and naturally, then it will be something that will also be easily usable. It is a very important concept in all design: from graphics to interface design. A well-designed grid makes your design not only more beautiful but also more usable!
So how do you design something beautiful and easily useable? Ok, you have to start from a grid, but what kind of grid? Based on which principles and which theories? We’ll discuss this a little further below.
How to build a functional grid
I told you how a harmonious composition plays a crucial role in determining the success of a project. To construct a harmonious design project it is therefore necessary to construct a graphic grid that is also harmonic. Yes, but how do you construct a harmonious graphic grid?
One of the most effective ways to do this is to use mathematics (nothing complicated) and specific mathematical relationships to construct the structure of the grid itself. Here’s how it’s done:
Follow the paper format
The first method is to exploit the dimensional relationships of the support on which you are working. For example, if you are working on an international sheet of paper, such as the A4, it will have a ratio between the two sides of 1: 1.414 and you can then use this mathematical relationship to create the divisions given within the sheet itself.
Creating divisions in a stable relationship with each other inside the sheet will create an important visual harmony.
How to create a grid on A4 paper
Once you have built a grid, you absolutely must not limit your creativity. A grid serves to channel creativity towards your goal. Alas, grid construction is not a science with a set of rules to learn by heart. Many of the most effective grids in graphic design were born from experiments with mathematical relationships, with texts, photographs, and elements of the page or website. Sometimes even from random experiments!
You, as a graphic designer, do not have to invent new grids or new methods to build graphic elements, you can simply rely on mathematical conventions, such as those I mentioned in this article. You can even take visual inspiration from highly published magazines and from other websites. The important thing is this: the grids are a great help if they become the most difficult and expensive part of your job, maybe you are doing something wrong. Grids should decrease and not increase the time spent on your project.
Before concluding, I think it may be useful to have some useful resources for building grids. Let’s start with books, or rather with a book in particular because knowledge is power, isn’t it?
One of the most useful resources in graphic design is the book (in English and German) of one of the masters of Swiss design in the mid-1900s, Josef Muller-Brockmann entitled “Grid Systems in Graphic Design”. This really is a MUST for every graphic designer professional. A historical and precious piece for your library. The price is directly proportional to the quality, really.
Even if you get the smallest chance to read it, it’s very worth it. You could even try getting it at a library. Here are some easy online tools that will also help in your grid creating adventures:
Gridulator – create simple grids that can be quickly saved in .png
Grid Designer – very useful for web designers to design columns and export with .css files
Searching on Google for keywords such as “grid building tool” or “grid builder” can find an infinite number of free tools that do more or less the same simple things.
That’s it for today. I hope I have convinced you of the importance of building a good and balanced grid in all your graphics and design projects. I also hope that this has helped you find a few new resources for designing and creating the perfect grid.
This is just an introductory article on the grids in graphic design. In short, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are many design theories and strategies out there that will help you perfect your grid related design technique, so always be on the lookout!
What is a font? And how are fonts used? How can you create quality typographic projects, using the best characters? This article aims to be the answer to these and many other questions that many young designers ask themselves every day.
Today, with this guide, I want to try to create a complete introductory resource for all the main topics of the font world. In short, it is a super guide for designers to use fonts!
OK, let’s go!
What is a font? And what is a typeface? And a glyph?
Before figuring out how to use fonts, it’s good to know what a font is, the difference between a typeface, a glyph, and so on. Because yes, typeface and fonts don’t mean exactly the same thing. The characters are, in graphics, typography, and publishing, like bricks in architecture, atoms in physics or numbers in mathematics. In short, they are the basis of graphics matter.
A set of characters studied coherently and according to the same formal principles, forms a typeface, whose file is called a font. But let’s clarify these aspects better.
Fonts, typefaces, and glyphs
These characters are letters, punctuation marks or symbols. So, for example, the letter “A” is a character. This character can be composed of several glyphs, such as A, ä, ăor â, which will, therefore, be glyphs of the same character and of the same typeface. The set of all the characters and glyphs of the Latin alphabet designed according to the same visual coherence and meaning, takes the name, again, of a typeface.
And it is here that misunderstandings arise in many different languages. English is clearer: the character (understood as a letter) is a character, the glyph is a glyph and the coherent set of all this, the typeface, is a typeface.
The font, however, is the file
Font is another thing: font is the medium that allows you to apply a font. That is: while Garamond is a character (typeface), the garamond_semibold.otf file is a font (better: one of the fonts that make up the Garamond font family). To explain it we can make the comparison with music: if a typeface (character) is a song, the font is the .mp3 file that allows us to listen to it. It is, therefore, wrong to say “Listen to this chorus via this mp3!”, While it is much more correct to say “Listen to this song!”
We often use the word “font” instead of character, it is a common mistake of the digital age: to confuse the software (medium) with its purpose (end). It’s a bit like saying “but this is Photoshop” looking at a montage.
And it is a mistake that I myself made for years and in which I still make from time to time. So learn from my mistakes!
Why do you say “font”?
Many think that font is a term of English origin but in reality, its origin is French. It is, in fact, the English transposition of the term “source”, of medieval French. This word, which pronounced itself “font” (in French the end is truncated and not pronounced) originally meant “fused”. The Latin root of the word is the same as the Italian verb “folder”. The word font was then imported into England where it spread to all English-speaking countries and from there to the whole world over the last century.
What are the font variants and types of typefaces?
Let’s look at the terms that serve to identify the various files that make up a family of fonts and the types of main typefaces:
The variants of a font (weights, italics, etc.)
As mentioned, a font is a file and each file corresponds to a typeface in which all the glyphs that have been designed so that it works together, as a single body, and inserted. Generally, font files are grouped into font families, where there are variations of the original typeface.
Types of typographic characters
The typefaces are not all the same, indeed, they are very different! In graphic schools or universities, fonts are often said to be divided into two categories, the serif and the sans serif. These are two French terms that mean “with thanks” and “without thanks”. In reality there are several others, even within these two macro-categories.
Serif and Sans Serif
The substantial difference between these two categories of fonts is the use of the “graces”, or those small extensions at the ends of the rods, which derive from manual calligraphic writing.
How does a font work?
As I said before, a character, or a single letter in all its variants, is composed of various different glyphs. Glyphs, in turn, are composed of many different structural elements, which take different names:
How to use fonts
In a complete guide on typography in graphics, one cannot talk about how to use these fonts. How many times have you started searching for the font best suited to your project by scrolling the font drop-down for hours, searching through the hundreds of characters you downloaded or purchased?
To put it simply, the font should always compliment the context. Of course, there are many ways it can do that, so it’s not exactly a science. What it is, however, is a skill that can be adapted and fine-tuned with some practice.
How to use fonts: combine multiple fonts with each other
Choosing a font is a complicated process and requires careful analysis of your project. But knowing how to match fonts can be even more difficult. In reality, there are so many things to talk about in this wonderful and fascinating world. Because the type is really one of the most mysterious and profound aspects of graphic design.
There are lots of courses you can take in order to get this right. My advice would be to at least research and study as much as you can. Again, this is one of those things that can only be perfected through practice.
I hope you’ve learned something new today. Although this article aimed to cover a lot, there is still a lot to know.
Fonts have been around for quite a while, and won’t be going away ever. They are an essential part of graphic design, and design as a whole. My advice would be to get as comfortable with them as possible and to practice using a wide variety of them, combine them, and maybe even experimenting with your own.