Fonts, A Tale of Character
A good font is the difference between making your work look professional, or amateur. Professional fonts don’t necessarily reflect a corporate, or intellectual look either. We don’t have to look far to see that many websites, this one included, steers clear of the classic Arial, Times New Roman and so on. Yet, they still maintain a professional image about them. In this article, I attempt to explain the difference between a good font and a bad font for visual design.
Comic Sans, you knew this was coming
Straight off the bat, let’s talk about the worlds most controversial font. Not exactly the most pleasing of sentences to read, but comic sans is considered an ugly font by most accords. Yet, this doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have its uses. When Comic Sans was made, it was to be a fun, quirky font. It was supposed to say: ‘Hey, I’m fun. You’re fun too, ‘ and it was reserved for designs that would call for it. Designs such as in a speech bubble in a comic (No shocker there).
However, people quickly grew tired of Comic Sans. But what did this font ever do to cause such an outburst? It all started when professionals all over the world decided they wanted their services to be more fun, more friendly… More accessible. All over the world, people were using Comic Sans when really it was highly inappropriate to do so. Click here for a fantastic website which shows some of the asinine uses of the font from the past, which really makes me wonder how people were allowed to make such a mockery of what is basically live-saving, or seriously critical work.
With that out of the way, I would like to stress further that Comic Sans has its place. It’s just an incredibly niche place.
What, Fonts Cost Money? How About Free Fonts..?
The main font we use here on GeekOut is the native Ubuntu font, a free (even commercially usable) font. You need to take care when picking a font to use in your designs, especially if you wish to make some cash off them. You need to be aware that not all fonts are free to use – Some you need a specific license for. If you’re looking for a good source of free fonts, two really good websites to go to are 1001fonts and Dafont. These both deal with commercially free fonts, as well as some non-commercial ones.
In case you were wondering about our Pumpkin from Halloween, we used a font called You Murderer which I got from 1001fonts. You’ll see this one is not a commercially free one. Before I went and used it, I checked the font info, which explained that it was freeware for non-profit use only. Small-Press publications are able to use it, as are non-commercial ventures. The font info provided gave me a link to the original creators website. If nothing else, this article can be considered a small shout-out to the creator.
If you’re ever thinking of making any cash off your designs and projects, always pick a license free (even commercially free) font. You don’t want to end up getting stung with a nasty letter telling you to not use a font or to pay up. Well, that’s it for this article. Hopefully you found it of some use, but as always, let me know what you thought in the comments below, over on Facebook or on Twitter. Thanks for reading!