What font is that?

February 26th, 2018

Over the weekend, I got to thinking about a question I see quite often: “What font is that?” Across every platform, it seems this question is being asked. Unfortunately, it’s rare to ever see an answer.

As someone that is not only venturing into the world of the type design, but is also a genuine lover of design and typography, it’s very discouraging to see this go unanswered.

I recently saw a post pop up on my twitter feed which read something along the lines of, “‘What font is that?’ is the new ‘What lens did you use?’” which was followed by “Stop asking, start doing. If you can’t execute, it really doesn’t matter what typeface or lens you use.”

While I understand the perspective this is coming from, I don’t necessarily agree with it. The reason I bring it up at all is because you rarely see designers even crediting the type they are using. Nor are they actually answering the question of “What font is that?” but yet it doesn’t matter what typeface you use?

If it doesn’t matter then why do you care if someone else wants to use that typeface? If it doesn’t matter then why are you so reluctant to answer the question? It’s easy to say it doesn’t matter, but does it not? Of course, typography is nuanced and requires a particular set of skills, but a good typeface can immediately elevate a project. (Which also isn’t to say that it inherently will.)

Here’s the thing—there’s value in your typographic decisions. There is value in how you set type. There is value in how you space type. There is value in how you combine type. There is value in your font selection.

To suggest that the type designers work and vision that you’re leveraging doesn’t matter doesn’t make you some enlightened designer, it makes you an ass.

On that note, if you are looking for type foundries, then I might suggest checking out my Type Foundry Directory.

This post was edited on June 21st, 2020. View the original.

Filed under: Fonts, Type

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