Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Don't go back to the bad times

Here is a worrying typographical development - a comparison of fonts and how much ink they use. It works by using Arial as the base at 100% and gives a bigger or smaller percentage to other fonts. Why worrying? Times Roman comes in at 71% ...  one of the most economic. Having spend much of my life successfully persuading newspapers to stop using Times as their body copy, what's the betting that men in suits will now decide it is the best face after all? Times uses less ink because it has a small x-height and it has upstrokes and downstrokes too thin, at smaller sizes, for the ink to cling on to - certainly on newsprint. Less ink often just means less legibility. If you are faced with a manager who suddenly becomes a typographic expert overnight, explain that there is only one serif on the list and that your Nimrod/ Clarion/Gulliver/Miller /Poynter or whatever actually uses even less ink. A total lie of course ... but I can guarantee he won't know. 

1 comment:

  1. Releavant to this and your previous post, in Gordon Burns' novel Fullalove, veteran hack Walter Brand is in the pub, reminiscing over fonts:

    "Degenerate, Manson, Exocet, Dead History Bold, Skelter, Arbitrary..."