Typography 101: One Font Used Five Ways | Jaz Infante | Skillshare

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Typography 101: One Font Used Five Ways

teacher avatar Jaz Infante, Designer // AIGA Board Member

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

6 Lessons (15m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Visual Hierarchy

    • 3. Visual Emphasis

    • 4. Use the Entire Font Family

    • 5. Kinetic Text

    • 6. Creative Alignment

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About This Class

This lesson is for new and beginning designers who want to understand the foundations of typography and how to untap your creativity within the limits of a font family. I see too many designers that blindly put together a type composition, without putting thought in what, and more importantly HOW you communicate an idea through text treatment. Using only 1 font, I'll show you how to think through a type composition and produce unique creative results. Join me!

Meet Your Teacher

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Jaz Infante

Designer // AIGA Board Member


Hello, I'm Jaz! I'm a full-time visual designer and Board Member for the AIGA Los Angeles chapter. 

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1. Introduction: Hello and welcome to my lesson. Siri's one fund used five different ways. This is a typography lesson that I wanted to make because I see a lot of new and beginner designers make the mistake of using 234 and more fonts in their designs when really you should only be using one, maybe two. Yes, the the situation is correct, but for the most part, you really should be sticking with one fund Now. This doesn't mean that you're limited in what you can do with that one fund. So this lesson Siri's. I'll be using one funt on, and I'll show you a couple of different scenarios in different ways that you can use this to really show you. Wait, what you can be capable of with this one fund in the front that I'll be using is called Barlow. It's a free Google farm. You can go ahead and download if you want to follow along. I chose this fun because it has a lot of different font waits. It's a really expensive family that gives me a lot of versatility, So go ahead and download this fund if you want to follow along. If not. You can choose your own fund. It's, ah, completely up to you. But let's jump in and I'll show you the really created things you could do with one typeface. 2. Visual Hierarchy: right. So jumping right in the first style or technique that you can use is called in visual hierarchy, and this should be pretty firm it familiar to you, because it's the most common way that you should be structuring your type with a visual hierarchy. Your typography is arranged in a way to be read in order of importance, meaning you'll have your key. Take away your call to action. Your most engaging headline will go up here. Maybe there's a secondary sub headline that's eat. That's also important, but maybe not as important. And then you'll have your body copy down here. And with this technique, you really guiding the reader's eyes down and through the text, and you can use different font sizes, different phone waits and even color Teoh create differences in visual separation, so this is like a basic headline, but I'll show you. Then, as you start to stack it, it might start to look something like this. Move this over so it could start to look into like this where you now you're using color in conduction with, um, some of the other like sizes and font waits to create that separation so right off the bat . The reader knows this is the most important part. And if I were to skim this page, I could get the key takeaways just by reading this headline of some of these sub headlines . This also works for creating bullet points and things like that. Um, so again, this is the absolute basics. But I really want to start thinking about how you guide your audience and how you, uh, tell the reader what they should be looking at and in what order they should be looking at . So this is the foundation that you start with. And then from here, I'll go into some other techniques that get a little bit more advanced, a little bit more creative. But I wanted to start with the very Absolute Basics Foundation. So whenever you're addressing type, you should always have a visual hierarchy in mind. What's the first thing that I want my reader to see? What's the second thing was the third thing, and so on and so forth. So visual high hierarchy is the very first thing you should be thinking off 3. Visual Emphasis: The second technique is to create a visual emphasis. What I mean by a visual emphasis is that you emphasize keywords using relative size and weight of that keyword. You use this technique to grab attention quickly, especially when you don't have a lot of space on the campus. So think of small display ads or, um, maybes things on social media. So this is really basically of doing this. So we have our the beginning of the line here, and really the keyword, whatever that keyword is for that headline should be the biggest, boldest, attention grabbing thing. So you look so as I'm scrolling through instagram or I'm on a website and I see a Google display at this should be the word that calls to my attention. Now, as I said here, this is a really basic way to do this. But you can also start to get pretty creative with it. So now what if I do something like this Now I'm introducing color. I'm introducing style, but I'm still emphasizing that one key word that I want, um and, you know, allows Meteo just can get a bit more creative with it. 1/3 version would be something like this, right? We're now have highlighted that key word, but it's the same basic principles of visual emphasis on my key word, and I can use this treatment for a variation of different things. I can have this one key word be multiple keywords. It could be two or three key words that her stack down, Um, but the important part is that with creating a visual hierarchy, you then take it one step further and you add a visual emphasis, which is just the Cliff Notes version of your typography. If I were to give you a metaphor for it, it should be the thing that if I'm just looking at this from the corner of my eye, what's that one key word that I want people to look at and understand? And then how do I make, then add style to that word to make it unique and maybe be branded to the specific brand that I'm working on? So Point number two is visual emphasis 4. Use the Entire Font Family: The next technique is to utilize Theo entire font library, and I don't see enough Designers utilize this technique with topography. You have to understand the psychology behind the glitz themselves and then take that knowledge and use it to your advantage. So, for example, if I were to design something like this, I know that big, bold italics give a sense of forward motion. There's movement in them, and even though it's static, it's dynamic. It's telling you something. So I'm still using a visual heart hierarchy, right? I am telling my reader that there should be red top to bottom. I'm creating a visual emphasis by the fact that this word is the biggest words. So I know that this is where what I want my reader to take away. But now I'm utilizing different clips. I'm utilizing the italics now Teoh play into what I'm trying to communicate, so this would be used for something like racing for gaming, something like that. By extension, if I were to create something like this now I'm using sin fonts with loose cunning, and I would use this because it communicates this premium feel. It feels luxurious, and so it's the exact same fund. But I'm trading in a different way again. Visual hierarchy, visual emphasis. But I'm using the typography ease psychology to my advantage. And with this I could even start to play with alignment, right? So if if I have this and it's just, um I can make one minor adjustment to, let's say, Just remove this over this way Right now, I've played with the alignment. So now it's kind of coming across this way and that one simple move now is taking this from a really kind of solid feeling statement to now It looks a little bit off balance, and now it kind of looks like there's just something a bit askew when I'm communicating to this is maybe that this brand, for example, is disruptive. Maybe they're, um, a brand that's operating in a space that they're like a start up, and they're they're coming in, and they're really kind of shaking things up in the industry. So I could use this to my advantage and communicate that through the fact that this typography is a little bit off balance. Um, I could even maybe center it her grounded by moving this over And so now that I've right justified everything, I still get that sense of skewed nous. I still get that sense of disrupted this and shaking things up. But I've done it with creating a bit more of a balance there. So again, you should not be afraid of really using the entire font library. So the front that I said, I'm using Barlow. And if I pull up my character palette, look at all the weights that are available to me, right? So that is one fine. But there's so many different variations of things that I can do with this. So why would I not explore this? Why wouldn't I really push what I can do with just this one? Fun. And that's before you even get into the turning the spacing and things like that. So I really want to drive. That home is to utilize more of the font library to your advantage 5. Kinetic Text: point number four is what I call kinetic text. And what I mean by kinetic text is it's static text that has a sense of movement because of the way the Texas treated. So let me show you exactly what I mean by kinetic text from looking at something like this . No, this has all the elements we've talked about before. There's a visual hierarchy. There's an emphasis. I'm playing with all of the different font waits. I've kind of kind going creative with how it lay this out. But if you look at this, you could see this. You know, if you visualize it with me for a second. As your mind is reading this, you're almost kind of adding motion to it. Looks like if this were an animated piece, you can see how things would kind of layout. We right. Maybe this word would fly in this world would pop up this word, would you? No. Okay, jump in. This woman can't keep in. And then this one kind of punch you in the face and kind of come out last. Um And so even though it's completely static, I'm the way them thinking about this. Taxes How would it look if a motion graphics designer where to add animation to this now you can you can kind of see it building in and them. This technique is best used for longer sentences because it really looks, looks best when you have these differing weights and these really different points of emphasis. Um, and the other cool thing about it is that it can be combined with other related fund families. So this is all using Barlow. But Barlow has a belated font family called Barlow condensed right? And so it's still the same fund. But it gives me access to a whole new set of funds. So let me show you what that looks like. So this is all just using that one fun. This is using Barlow in combination with Barlow condensed and so again, same font family. But it's giving me access to, uh, new and creative things that I could do with it by expanding that. So before you jump into trying to find a secondary funt, look at fonts that have, um, expensive fund families. So it Barlow has Barlow condensed. Maybe there's a Barlow extra wide bay. There's a Barlow Ultra condensed, Um, Barlow. I know a shortened version of it or anything like that. But if you know that your father has an extended family, by all means, you can go ahead and use that and really play in. Get creative with your combinations. You don't have to be limited to that one specific fun as long as they're in the same family , though. Work together so again this, um, kinetic text and is best used for longer sentences, and it gives you the opportunity to combine related fought families. 6. Creative Alignment: the last point point number five is really a combination of all the previous points, but as the element of creative alignment, this is a bit more advanced. But once you nail down the four first variations, this part is just a matter of tinkering and finessing and really trusting your eye and trusting what you see on the campus. So in the same way that different font styles can change, the meaning of a phrase alignment can do the same thing. Let me show you what I mean here. So left alignment. Single words. It's really just strong and bold and punchy like that. So you see Nike. You see, a lot of sports brands use this technique because it's just there's a there's a visual hierarchy, you know that you're supposed to read this top down. Um, believe it or not, there is a visual emphasis here in that the longer words really draw your attention. And like the keywords like, look, impressive headline, stand out just because of the way that this is kind of like pure omitted on top of each other. But it's something like this is just that that same fund. But now I've used in a way that just feels kind of just stronger and angered. And, you know, one subtle difference like this. If I would have just had a period find it, it's just, like change the whole meaning of everything that was just like in your face point stop. You know exactly what this means, and so this might be the route to go for your brand that you're working on. If they're, you know, if this is the tone of what they're saying, if they're strong, kind of like grounded Brown brand, this might work for them. On the flip side, something like center alignment is softer and more gentle. This is why you see this used in like poetry in the beginning of books, especially with few like combining it with the italics. It's just, um, overall center Lineman is seen as weak because it seems, um, a little bit. It's imbalance with itself and its in harmony. But because there's no really visual emphasis or anything like that, it is softer, and that might work for the through. The design that you're working on is toe have something that's a bit more gentle, but with this technical this. As I said, as you start toe, hone in on things and get creative, you know, don't be afraid to break some of the rules. So if I look at something like this, this is breaking a lot of rules, right? So I have some text that's right just to fight here at Texas Left, justified here. This is right. Justified again. There's italics. There's a bold there's, you know, I'm working with Barlow condensed as well, so there's all kinds of different things going on. But because I took my time with this and I trust my eye and I trust what I'm seeing, I know that this works. And if I would have liked put this on a poster on a graphic T shirt ever. I know that it would work because I've laid out all the previous points. Like I said, there's there's a visual hierarchy. There's a visual emphasis. I've played with different fonts, birds like on the same font family. So all these things work together in my favor so that I can pull this off. So again, don't be afraid to break some of the rules. Once you have the foundation down