Web Quest – Typography

This week’s topics were lettering /typefaces and one of my favorite type foundries has to be Hoefler & Frere Jones. I have researched and written a paper on them in the past. For those of you who are not designers, you might be surprised to learn that the computer generated text you read is usually a very expensive font designed at a type foundry.  That font was paid for by the software company in order for them to include it in your package for your use.

Some of those typefaces (a collection of fonts in one family) are inspired by old, hand rendered type from centuries ago and others are more recent such as Arial and Helvetica. There is a whole fascinating history around the topic of typography and it can be mesmerizing how typography impacts history (or maybe that is just the geeky graphic designer in me showing up.)

Hoefler & Frere Jones:


This is a professional type foundry. This is the type of company you would hire if you were setting out to create a brand for your own company. They have designed fonts specifically for brands such as Martha Stewart Living, Wired, and President Obama.


I especially like the numbers fonts they put out such as the Greenback, based on the look of our American dollar. They also suggest a font that goes well with it, as if you are choosing a wine to compliment your dinner!

You can even test drive their fonts. Example: http://www.typography.com/testDriver/index.php?productLineID=100018

Expect to pay for a font from them if you want to keep it. Numbers alone is $129 for a single computer user, but you can price it out for up to 50 users.

Font: a single style in a typeface such as what you are reading here.  Another font using the same typeface would be Times New Roman Bold. You thought you were just making the lettering darker, but in fact, you are using another font!

Typeface: a collection of fonts in one style such as Arial: Arial bold, Arial italics, Arial Narrow.

Right or wrong, these terms are often used interchangeably and I find myself guilty as charged.

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