Getting Started with Typography
Posted 08 July 2013
It might date back to Ancient Greece, but typography continues to be a vital ingredient in successful web design.
Arranging type in the most clear, creative and compelling way is a high priority for web designers. It’s a low-key, highly effective way to have a lasting impact upon site visitors. Typography allows you to create a visually impressive web design that makes it easy for readers to digest the information that you wish to share with them.
With responsive web design helping web designers to think more broadly about the impact and accessibility of a website design upon multiple devices, typography remains a powerful tool. It enables you to create a distinctive visual brand which is equally strong on mobile and desktop browsers and can be integrated across your company’s communications and marketing.
The best way to understand typography and establish the way that it might help your company’s branding and online presence is to find great examples of typefaces at work on the internet.
Here are 3 sites which showcase typography, both in the abstract and in web design, and 3 ways to start thinking about which typefaces are most compatible with the impression that you are trying to make on your site visitors. This will also give you a framework to show colleagues how powerful a tool typography can be.
We Love Typography
This portfolio website is a little bit like Pinterest for font families. It’s a compilation of some of the most creative and artistic uses of typography on the web. A particularly helpful tool is the colour filter, allowing you to search for typefaces according to the colours that they have been used with.
Fonts In Use
This is an online portfolio of real-life website design and graphic design. It showcases different typefaces and provides commentary/explanation of why they have been chosen and the impact that they have. This is a great resource for developing your understanding of how typography can be used to brand your web design.
This Tumblr site showcases more artistic and abstract uses of typography. This will give you a fuller appreciation of the way that typography can be used to influence graphic design. If you’re looking to redesign your company logo, for example, this is a great resource, featuring bold typefaces that create a lasting impression.
Finding Fonts Online
There are numerous libraries of fonts which allow you to search for and download typefaces, either for free or a small fee. Whilst this may or may not help you identify a typeface for your professional web design, it will help you identify which options might be suitable.
Three excellent sites to help you get started are Urban Fonts, Font Squirrel and Da Font.