Hell yeah Helvetica!

Two fonts walk into the bar, and the barman says, "sorry lads, we don't serve your type here".

This week is the 50th birthday of the designer's goto font, Helvetica. If you don't get involved in fonts than don't worry it won't matter to you - but even in the relatively short time I've been involved in design it's often come this (|) close to a fist fight when trying to get all involved parties to agree on a type face for a project. That's where Helvetica comes into play. Most the suits want Arial, or if I'm lucky Verdana, they're plain, easy to real, but frankly boring as fuck and played out, not that Helvetica isn't at this point - but at least it's not so chubby like arial. Helvetica, looks nice. It's nothing fancy, but it's clean very clean - and i can feel alright about endorsing it's use in a project, for that i'm thankful, thank you Helvetica, happy Birthday.

Via BBC news:

We live in a world where we are surrounded 24 hours a day by adverts and corporate communications, many in typefaces chosen to subliminally complement the message.

Helvetica and its rivals

Helvetica's message is this: you are going to get to your destination on time; your plane will not crash; your money is safe in our vault; we will not break the package; the paperwork has been filled in; everything is going to be OK.

It is sans serif. There are no wiggly bits at the end of the letters. It has smooth, clean lines, and an unobtrusive geometry that almost suggests it was designed not to stand out.

Lars Mueller is a Helvetica devotee. He has published a book, Helvetica: Homage to a Typeface, and recently donated an original set of lead lettering to a Helvetica exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

"It has a modern attitude which lines up with the aesthetic premises of the 1950s and 60s. Helvetica is a corporate typeface, but on the other hand it's the favourite of hairdressers and kebab shops. It is the butter on the bread."

|The Rest|


The ARBitrator said...

I want someone to invent a font that looks just like my handwriting:

Illegible Scrawl!!!


the le duo said...

you know what they say- 'when in times new rome, do as the time new romans do'

jay said...

I have a pretty outspoken fetish for Helvetica--I even own the Lars Mueller book mentioned!

I've also been a big Akzidenz-Grotesk kick lately. I like my fonts like I like my ladies--simple & clean...

greg davis said...

big propers to helvetica!

casey said...

Times, please.

Solid. Timeless. Classy. And industry-standard among us old school paper pushers.

Your blog has been excellent lately, btw.