Is Your Typography Speaking the Truth?

by on August 7, 2016 · 0 comments

lets go swimming old 2.1

Are your typographic design choices conveying the proper message?

Taking the time to consider the tone of your typography is a vital design step that is easily overlooked. Tone is one of the three base concepts of typography. We will be discussing all three (tone, legibility, and readability) in our discussion Typography 101, this Thursday, August 11th at 5PM PDT/8PM EDT.

Let’s take a few moments together to take a closer look at tone.

For our exercise today we’ll use an example of a sign encouraging folks to swim. First we’ll look at a poor example and then through consideration of the typography’s tone we will try to improve upon the original.

How would you feel if you encountered this sign?

This extreme example showcases the importance of tone considerations when planning your typographic design. I feel the sign above is inviting me to go swimming in a pool of electric eels – something I hope never to do. Poor initial typographic tone choices distort the sign’s message to the point of having an opposite affect.

Uses for this typeface (Shocktherapy) are extremely limited. It would work as the header text on an AC/DC promo poster. It’s very low legibility, and non-existant readability (ease of reading in paragraph form) make it unusable otherwise.

Let’s see what we can do to improve the typographic tone of the above sign.

By spending just a few moments of thought I was able to easily address the problems of the typography’s tone. I simply replaced the original typeface with Garamond, adjusted the tracking in the top line of text, and changed the “electrocution orange” color to a more calming blue. A definite improvement that fixes what was a broken sign – just by giving proper consideration to the typography.

Granted, this is an extreme example to help us better understand the concept of tone but, these same considerations are vital when building beautiful and professional websites for your clients.

Join us this Thursday, August 11th at 5PM PDT/8PM EDT, for our Typography 101 discussion and learn how to move your typography skills to the next level. A level your clients are guaranteed to take notice of!

If you are interested in learning more about the Expand2Web summer class schedule, please visit:

Inspiration source (and extremely enlightening post on tone):
Douglas Bonneville – 23 Really Bad Font Choices

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Don is an entrepreneur based in Silicon Valley. He founded Expand2Web and is the publisher of the Expand2Web Blog, and the GetFiveStars Customer Feedback and Reviews service.

Don has written 313 articles on Expand2Web

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