Please critique my font choices

poab's picture


I'm trying to educate myself as much as possible with regards to design. I've read as much as I can get my hands on with regards to typography but I don't really feel there's any replacement for experience, which I don't have. For the first time I've got full control over the design of something the company I work for is doing and I want to make a really good job of it.

I'm trying to create a visual hierarchy for my type that isn't boring. The two major concerns I have are that a) It looks quite stylised (which doesn't bode well for the "good typography is invisible to the untrained eye" rule I keep hearing about) and b) Even though the counter spaces on the fonts I've picked seem to go well together, I'm not sure about the variations between other elements of the letters.

I'm not hoping to do anything profound or technically impressive. I'd just rather not make any glarring errors with my first real foray into laying out type. I'm aware that the colours for the roll overs are weak and damage the readability, I just haven't come up with any alternatives yet. Obviously it'll look a lot different with lots of text, but I want to get the foundations correct before I start worrying about the rest of it.

font examples

I'd be interested to hear anyone/everyone's opinions/suggestions/criticisms etc.


designalchemy's picture

Hi Benjie, I would like to be of some help but it is not easy as you have not told us what type of company it is you work for. What is the audience / demographics that will be seeing the work? What type of information are you trying to deliver with what type of impact. What is the current identity/brand and market positioning of the company you work for. These types of questions are much more important than what typeface to use, If you have a clear picture of the answers I asked I would say you may be ready for the creative process to begin and exploration is a good way to do this. Do not be too critical on your self at this stage. The rules you mentioned are good guidelines but not absolutes. Just look at Emigre type foundry, they did everything wrong according to the critics but they are now considered pioneers in modern type design.
As strange as it may sound I often qualify typeface selection for projects based on circulation, if a typeface is distributed by a major foundry or has been over used I will not use it. I personally aim for exclusivity in choosing typefaces. As for your choices of Omega and Rotondo, they may work well together but in what context?

poab's picture


Sorry- I could've been more helpful there couldn't I?

Anyway, the target demographic is difficult to state. I sorta have two. I'm building a specialist directory of hotels and guesthouses. The target in terms of getting people to sign up seems to be largely women in there mid 40's with relatively traditional tastes. This is contrasted by larger hotels, which whilst being fewer in number are considerably more profitable for us. On the other hand the target audience is young mobile businessmen and tourists of all ages.

I started out trying to get a very 1950's 'I dream of Genie', or picture postcard sort of look. Then with the mixture of targets I decided I'd prefer something that a)didn't clash with the individual businesses method of marketing themselves, and b)was appropriate for all.

What I now want is a type design that blends into the background and doesn't interfere with anything. Something really clean and subtle. To that end I considered using arial. I know that that's a bit of a cop-out, but my feeling was that because it's everywhere on the web, it would present no presence as people of all tastes using the internet are accustomed to it by now.

Currently there is no branding or status for the project online or offline, so I've got a clean palette from that point of view.

Rotondo has been dropped because my boss hates it (and he's paying my salary), which I think's a shame, but never mind.

Any suggestions, on how to fade type selection/design towards subtlety much appreciated.


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