News: Tagged as In-use
FF Seria started as a Latin script family; Martin Majoor began the design in 1996, and we released it in 2000. Nine years later, we brought FF Seria Arabic onto the market, which Majoor developed together with Pascal Zoghbi, a Dutch-trained type designer based in Lebanon. Their tandem Arabic family was the first Arabic typeface published by FontFont; it grew out of an earlier collaboration named Sada, which had been designed as part of the Khatt Foundation’s Typographic Matchmaking project.
Both the Arabic and English editions of Reflections on Islamic Art were designed by Muiz Anwar, a graphic designer based in London – and also a former intern with us at FontFont. Anwar’s solution for these books is reduced and thoughtful. Each edition is a mirror of the other. Images play the primary role in the design, often taking up full pages, or half of a spread.
In order for the Arabic and English titles to take up the similar amounts of visual space, the Arabic title employs long kashidas – or lengthening strokes. However, the English title makes use of additional space, too. Had Anwar set the English title in upper and lowercase, its words would have been much shorter; by switching to all caps, letterspacing may be applied. The combination of tracked capitals in English and kashidas in Arabic is an interesting solution.
The books’ colour palettes are reduced, drawing more attention to the images themselves when their appear. Text in the Reflections on Islamic Arteditions is always either black-on-white or white-on-black. The tables of contents are handled in a similar way as the books’ title pages. Yet the typographic hierarchies are not identical in each edition: for the English-language, author names are set in FF Seria Italic, setting them apart from the main text in FF Seria Regular. Whereas in the Arabic typography there isn’t an italic weight in FF Seria Arabic, so the Arabic text has a slightly more even feel.
FF Seria Italic is an upright italic. Its letters have only a minimal slant. This sets it apart from the italics in Majoor’s other typeface families; FF Nexus Italic and FF Scala Italic both feature a steeper slope.
Anwar is a type designer and letterer himself, and he contributed more to Reflections on Islamic Art than just its typesetting. Each chapter opens with a very short text in a thin, dotted-line constructed Arabic script that he designed for the purpose. The hard geometry and ‘digital’ nature of Anwar’s lettering in these books contrasts well with the pen-shaped form of FF Seria Arabic.
Regarding his design, Anwar wrote to tell us that he aimed ‘to reflect the architecture of the Museum of Islamic Art, an environment with an amazing collection of unique and intricately wrought works of art’. He continued, ‘the book is the building and its design is the architecture; its job is to maximize the impression the words and the images make on the viewer/reader. My design is rooted in the grid system traditions evident in the layout of Qur’anic and other Islamic manuscripts. Margins are wide and generous to allow the eye space to appreciate the variant detail of each piece of work. The reduced colour palette for the book is an extension of the architectural aesthetic I.M. Pei established for the MIA building.’
Great care has been taken to ensure that the harmony achieved and evident in an
Arabic spread is reflected with equal beauty in a Latin spread – with particular elements
reflected/reversed to conform to Arabic and Latin reading patterns. The grid layout for internal spreads is based on the proportions of early Arabic manuscripts, which characteristically featured expansive borders. Although these borders were often used for annotation, commentary and illumination, in many cases they were left blank, allowing greater emphasis to be placed on the content centralised on the page.
In our quest to make our website as functional and easy to use as possible, we have added three brand new features.
First up, is our gallery of FontFonts in-use. Now when you browse through our typefaces, you can browse a picture of each font in-use. Just click on the ‘camera’ icon on the browse page and the pictures of our type in-use examples will be displayed.
You can also view an in-use gallery of each indivdiual FontFont family. So whether you’re searching for all in-use pictures of the FF Unit family, looking for an example of what FF Meta looks like when used on the Mozilla website, trying to find out what FF Fontesque looks like on a bookcover, or if you’re simply after another way of browsing through our library, our in-use gallery offers you a real visual treat.
Discover the delights of OpenType
Through the advanced typographical control of the OpenType format you can bring your text to life with fantastic features such as small caps, tabular figures, swashes and oldstyle figures. Yet it’s often said that the true features and fantastic functions of OpenType can be hidden away, often undiscovered. We hope to change that with our second new feature which helps you to see how the OpenType layout features, that are included in each FontFont, appear. For example, when you click on the OpenType features of FF Scala Regular you can now see all the different features that the font contains and how they will appear in FF Scala.
Want to find out more about OpenType and its layout features? Check out our OpenType User Guide (247KB).
Our FontFont Library is home to numerous award-winning typeface designs and now you can easily see which of our FontFonts have won prizes. Just look out for the little trophy icon next to the font on the browse page. You can also read all about the typefaces which have been awarded accolades and prizes on our news section under Awards.permalink
We are sure you haven’t overlooked our in-use gallery on every family page. But what you may not have noticed is that this key feature of our site has just received a massive update. We recently uploaded over 2000 images representing almost every FontFont in our library, and will continue to upload more in the coming weeks.
So just browse on over to your favorite FontFont and get inspired by the in-use images to the right of the font’s description. The images offer you a peek at what is possible using a specific FontFont and explain how others have used that particular typeface on their projects. Most images even include a description and the designer’s contact information in case you’d like to hire them for your next project.
As always, Europe’s biggest design conference was awaited with much eager anticipation. As always, it was a tremendous success. And, as always, the visual style of the conference was carefully scrutinized by the critical eyes of the attending designers.
Traditionally, the conference’s theme motto changes every year and is interpreted by Berlin design agency studio adhoc. This year’s motif was “Shift”. To express this concept, Magnus Hengge and his team fittingly chose FF Scala, a FontFont classic, and paired it up with FF Basic Gothic, a brand new FontFont. While FF Scala has proven its flexibility and versatility for the last 20 years, FF Basic Gothic has yet to be put to the test at all. So it was all the more delightful that they both met the challenge head-on and mastered it with flying colors.read more