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A lesson in typography

James Rippon James Rippon
Corner Sofas Living room by Hconcept Interiors London Ltd.
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By definition, typography is the art and technique of arranging type to make written language most appealing for learning and recognition. In more simple terms, it is the arrangement of words, and different fonts, to be most visually pleasant. It involves selecting different typefaces (fonts, sizes, italics, bold etc), and arranging them in their most engaging way to attract attention. It plays a large part in advertising, as the arrangement of the text itself can be eye-catching; grabbing a consumer's attention, enticing them to read a business name, slogan, or message.

Typography is an art form in itself, and as the digital age evolves, and more font types became available, designers are able to manipulate and customise fonts to make them more visually attractive, and arrange that particular font into a layout of however they please.

Today, we will give you a short lesson on the art of typography. From its origins, to its presence in today's world, and most of all, highlight its importance, and how it affect us subconsciously, in ways we may not suspect.

Be individual

This wall hanging proves art can be something as simple as some text, which conveys a brief message. Fonts can be grouped into one of two main groups. 'Serif' fonts are those we see with small, projecting features called “serifs” at each end of the letter. 'Sans serif' fonts, are then those without the projecting features, with the term coming from the French word sans, meaning “without”. Sans serif, sometimes referred to simply as sans, are more commonly used in headlines, rather than the body of text. In the world of graphic design, Serif is also sometimes referred to as 'Gothic' text. To visualise the above statement, this wall print is sans serif, and comes in a rubber stamp style font; with the text being divided up into sections, as was common in old rubber stamps. 'Make Your Own Gang' is a message that can be interpreted a number of ways, but we think it conveys a message of individuality, and encourages us to be leaders, rather than followers. With the text aligned to the right, it goes against the status-quo of text being aligned to the left, again maybe telling us to think against the grain, and to be individual.


Here we see an amazing rooftop terrace that looks like the perfect relaxation spot for the occupants of this apartment. If you look closely, there are three distinct fonts, two printed on the cushions, the other on the throw rugs. 'A true love story never ends… ' reads the cursive script on the cushions, with the three dot points accentuating the notion of continuation, letting the love story carry on beyond the cushions. A love story is a very personal thing, so it seems fitting this message is written in cursive, which is any font written in a flowing, often hand written text. The 'No. 1' is an example of a serif font, as it has the small features on the ends of the letters and numbers. Another distinguishing difference between serif and sans is the text width, as you can see perfectly exemplified in this image. The serif N has thin lines connected by a thicker line, while the sans serif font stays the exact same width throughout.


Love is an emotion and a feeling that should be felt in every home, but with just a little reminder, this wonderful living room spreads the love by having it written on the coffee table decoration. Here we see another serif font, in the form of 'Times New Roman', undoubtedly one of the most commonly used fonts for bodies of text. Having the same word written three times in different sizes further accentuates the message.

Homeward bound

Sailor drawings and fonts have been popular in tattoo art since tattoos began. Sailors were some of the first to pioneer tattooing, and eventually it evolved into one of attributes that identified a sailor. If you are a fan of the style, but aren't too keen to get tattooed, why not add a touch of the old school sailor style into your home instead? This serif font is a traditional font, with the word 'homeward', indicating the ship is on its way home. 

F is for…

Alphabet Intricate Inks Ceramic Tiles by Rory Dobner
Rory Dobner

Alphabet Intricate Inks Ceramic Tiles

Rory Dobner

Maybe you drink like a fish? Or maybe your name is Fred? A present for your Father, perhaps? Or maybe just because you think its funny, this unique tile can convey a million different messages. The font is again a serif font, with accentuated strokes, and different widths for different parts of the letter. Serif fonts are of the Roman font group, common examples being Times New Roman and Bembo.

We hope you've learnt a thing or two in this very brief lesson on fonts and typography, and hope you will take the time to appreciate text a little more, and understand the thought process that goes into the art of a font.

Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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