Typography 101: Designing with Type

Amanda Stoneman — March 5th, 2015
Good typography is a crucial component of creating successful designs. Not only will your designs look better, they will be more persuasive and easier to read. Choosing the right type can make or break a document, so you should always make sure the font is legible, readable and useable.

Good typography is a crucial component of creating successful designs. Not only will your designs look better, they will be more persuasive and easier to read. Choosing the right type can make or break a document, so you should always make sure the font is legible, readable and useable.

Whether you’re designing a landing page, website or print advertisement, paying close attention to typography is essential. Good typographic design improves the aesthetic appeal, creates a logical hierarchy, distinguishes between different types of text and indicates a positive ethos for your company. If you want to be taken seriously as a professional, you need to think carefully about what typefaces to use in your designs.

The most important facets of type are legibility, readability and usability.

When choosing a typeface for a professional document, you’ll want to make sure users can read it easily and efficiently. The more legible and readable the type, the quicker the user can complete a task.

Professional Typefaces

  • Times New Roman
  • Helvetica
  • Garamond
  • Georgia
  • Trebuchet MS
  • Myriad Pro

Unprofessional Typefaces

  • Comic Sans
  • Papyrus
  • Brush Script
  • Curlz
  • Vivaldi
  • Bradley Hand

When creating a typographically successful design, designers are not limited to a select few professional fonts. There are a myriad of typefaces available; however, finding useful, attractive and easy-to-read fonts should be your main priority. Always remember that manipulating type with color or size distortions can also make it more difficult to read, so choose wisely. Good typography should reflect the company’s brand, reinforce their main objectives and help the user find relevant information quicker and easier.

Always use a rhetorically appropriate font.

Context is everything. A business memo won’t have the same effect with an informal font. A daycare flyer may not be successful with formal font. Make sure you’re always matching the tone of the document with the right typeface.

Design Tip: Type should always be legible, readable and useable.