Fontsmith has an amazing pedigree for developing valuable typographic resources. In their latest release FS senior type designer Krista Radoeva shares wisdom on type classification.
Instead of focusing on the existing systems or trying to come up with a new one, the Fontsmith guide looks to demystify some useful terminology to help designers recognise the most common Latin type styles. The PDF booklet includes in depth information about the different styles and explains the details that are used to identify them.
It is available to download on the Fontsmith website for free if you subscribe to thier mailing list… (If you are not already on the Fontsmith newsletter you should be!)
Krista said: “Most of the existing classification systems are considered outdated, subjective and confusing. Indeed, type design is a complicated discipline with many variables. A lot of contemporary typefaces do not fit in any of these historical categories, so it’s considered impossible to come up with a system that includes every type design possibility.
“Type is constantly evolving, and one system doesn’t fit all. However, an understanding of type design history will help make a designer make better choices, such as in pairing fonts, or finding the right type style for a logo or piece of lettering work. Knowing the historical connotations of certain styles, or simply their visual features, can be invaluable in these situations… Understanding classification also enables you to start noticing more subtle differences between typefaces. It helps you when describing a chosen font to a client, or commissioning a custom one; and enriches your design palette more holistically.”