Typography is an art. But it also a technique of arranging typefaces, so that written language is clear, legible, and attractive when displayed. Its development sets throughout many countries in history. It’s an ever-evolving art form. Additionally, with programming improvements, everyone can try to explore this art themselves.
As for types of font, which is classified into four primary groups which are:
- Serif style
- San style
- Scripts style
- Decorative styles.
As time went by, scholars have created systems that categorize these typefaces, and these categories have more subcategories. These categories were first published in 1954 as the Vox system. It’s a hybrid system of 15 styles. It is still widely accepted as the standard in this day. That being said, here are the main four classifications of fonts.
Serif-type styles define themselves by having extensions of the end of the character terminals. It is mainly used for prints.
Serif types are initially from the engraved fonts of the Romans. As such, serifs are characteristically associated with Roman letters. Some popular Serif fonts are Times New Roman, Georgia, Freight Text, St. Marie, Beirut, etc.
Here are some subcategories with brief descriptions.
A. Old style
This category includes roman types dating back to the late 15th and the 18th centuries. The group of bent strokes is typically set aside to one side in these planes so that weight pressure is at around 8:00 and 2:00. Similar to the previous Venetian old style plans, a few adaptations are recognized by the corner to corner cross stroke of the lowercase ‘e.’ Bembo, Adobe Jenson, Caslon, etc., fonts.
B. Transitional Serifs
English printer and typographer John Baskerville created this style in the 18th century. These typefaces represent a mix of old-style and neoclassical designs. Aurora, Baskerville, Charis Sil are some examples.
C. Neoclassical and Didone Serifs
The style was first created in the 18th century. At its birth, it was called classical designs. This group of bent strokes is vertical with practically no use of brackets. In many cases, stroke terminals are ball or round shape rather than making an expansive pen impact. Bedoni, Didot, Aster are an example of Neoclassical fonts.
D. Slab Serifs
Slab Serifs became popular in the 19th century. As advertising became more popular, Slab Serifs also became mainstream. Slab serif-type styles look like sans serif plans with the simple expansion of substantial serifs to many readers. Captain Nelson, Trend, Beau’s Varsity are a couple of examples.
San serif style is different from the others. It is defined by having no extensions on the end of the letter strokes. It’s mainly used for monitors and screens As the name suggests, san serif types are without serifs. It was initially designed for digital display purposes. The shortfall of limited and fiddly serifs means they work better on screens, making them great for sites, applications, and anything on the screen.
It has become popular in the professional sector. It is often helpful for posters, signs, and digital screens. It’s popular in the political spectrum too. Open Sans, Roboto, Lato, PT Sans, Exo are famous examples.
Here are some subcategories with brief descriptions:
A. Grotesque Sans Serif
These are the first financially mainstream sans serif typefaces. The contrast in stroke weight is evident in these styles. In terms of shape, there is a squareness in older styles that have been slowly rounded. Examples of Grotesque are Akzidenz Grotesk, Venus, News Gothic, Franklin Gothic, etc.
B. Square Sans Serif
These fonts are limited to display designs. The fonts are usually stiff. They have a defining end compared to other fonts of the same family. Borough, Board of Directors, Azbuka are some examples.
C. Geometric Sans Serif
These are rather unpopular compared to other San Serif. These are harder to read, and simple geometric shapes influence them. Pantra, Wavehause Sans, Averta standard are examples of Geometric Sans Serif fonts.
D. Humanistic Sans Serif
These styles have inspired the Romans; inscriptional letters. These are the most easily definable and readable among san-serifs. Candara, Brusseline, Droid fonts are a few examples.
The scripts style looks like handwriting or calligraphy and has roughly the most varied use among all other fonts. These types of fonts are cursive. The reason for cursive writing was to make a smoother and quicker way to write. Some cursive composing doesn’t contain conjoined structures. The structure isn’t the same in all settings. The letters will be joined at the closures and specific circumstances in different societies like the Cyrillic and Arabic. They look like there are lines of wave strokes that depict a word or a statement.
These fonts’ style is very different from what one would expect from fonts coming from the same family tree. As a result, the style has been used and reused many times. Contemporary examples try to replicate the neural flow of writing in an exquisite style. Others take the genuineness the other way, portraying more legit writing styles such as scribbling, scratchy, and functional looking. Script fonts examples include Alex Brush, Pacifico, Great vibes, Lobster, etc.
These are some subcategories with brief descriptions:
A. Calligraphic Scripts
Its name explains its nature, as the name would suggest this mimics calligraphic writing. It can be connecting or non-connecting in terms of design. Alex brush, Allura regular, Blenda, Miama are examples of Calligraphic Scripts.
B. Blackletter and Lombardic Scripts
These typefaces are designed for a while without the blessing of mobile. There are designed on original copy lettering. Black Chancery, Pure evil 2, Squealer Regular are a few examples.
C. Casual Scripts
Casual refers to informal, natural, and effortless. These types are designed with informality in mind. Along with being casual, it also has a brush of aesthetics. Here, one-character strokes connect with the other. Bon Vivant Family. Belluga, Pringle, and Tweed are Casual Scripts.
It belongs in one of the largest categories among all the styles, and it is very diverse. Decorative fonts are popular for signage and headlines. The style is usually used in a typographic statement.
This style reflects many aspects of culture, and you can see them among tattoos or Graffiti. This style often reflects a period or theme. Using unorthodox methods, you could achieve remarkable and dramatic results. Vegan Styles, Cassandra, Countryside, Youth touch are famous examples.
Here are some subcategories of Decorative styles with brief descriptions:
A. Grunge and Psychedelic
These types of designs are widespread within a set period. CITRIC ACID, ANGELES ROUGH, BROKEN, Your Dreams are some examples.
We see Graffiti on walls all the time. It is writing, or drawings scribbled, scratched, or sprayed illicitly on a wall or other surface in a public place. It is a gesture and a form of art that often represents a particular social culture. Shockwave, A Dripping Marker, A Another Tag are Graffiti font examples.
All this type of fonts serves a different purpose. All fonts are designed for unique reasons and circumstances. That is why this variation of fonts is a blessing. Because of so many options, one could choose exactly the type they need. Due to how approachable this in this age of digitalization, one could make the perfect font for themselves. By knowing the many types, you can take an educated approach to use them.
That’s all for now. Hope this was a helpful read for all of you.