Thursday, July 02, 2009

What's in a font?

I am a newbie to blogging and much like the premise for Seinfeld, I have no specific topics in mind. This will be my platform for whatever I'm thinking about at the moment. So, here goes my first attempt:

I always struggle with titles, user names, etc., when I have to create a new profile. I want to pick something unique that people will get a kick out of or make people question (I find myself frequently off on tangents, trying to find out more about what people are talking about). My initials and birth date are no longer acceptable (I looked up a Gaelic-English dictionary for my fave new user name). But then it comes time to pick the font...

I like to try different fonts but always fall back on Arial, especially for work-related documents. I figured I wasn't conforming to my computers incessant recommendation to use Times New Roman. So, there! Then I read Patricia Cornwell's "Scarpetta" was dismayed to learn that Arial was considered (maybe by the author or maybe this was only the incredibly smart, beautiful techno geek extrordinare character's assessment) to be a thief, a fraud! An update of the more classic style Helvetica.

My font is a fake? What does that say about me? Or am I reading to much into this?

Off I go to research what fonts are cool but legible. (Is there such a thing as a cutting edge font, I wonder?). So, in setting up my blog here, I reach the part where I have to chose the font again. Well, Times is out, Arial's out, what do I pick? I try them all out and chose Verdana, only to come upon this during research . Verdana is dull? Oh boy.

So I delve in further, looking for some positive feedback on my choices while playing with Open Office to check out the aesthetics (a cool name is fine but what does it look like?) . I find this It puts a slightly better spin on things.

The Readers' Digest link mentions Gigi, "the sex kitten" of fonts and Impact, the "rigid, rude, sad" font. No font by its description alone seems to fit my personality and I've yet to find the Facebook quiz to aid with this. I finally decide on Trebuchet, not finding any derogatory remarks about this one, though, to be honest, I stopped persuing it.

The written word is such a large part of our world now, with the myriad of online social sites as well as our business websites, and while we can easily add pictures to profiles, it is harder show our individual personalities without additional help (emoticons aside). I think that is why our choice of font can be such a big thing and why, to quote the Yahoo link, "people are so passionate about their typeface."

I will continue my search to find the best fit for me (though, my friends would probably say Webdings would fit that category) while practicing the line "My name is..." during office hours ;-)

Any thoughts? Let me know.

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