Blog Post #3 – Helvetica

Prior to seeing the documentary Helvetica, I hadn’t realized the prominence of the typeface in our society and the impact it has on designers and people. I was very interested in the thought process that went into the design, aesthetic, and naming of Helvetica, and it’s emergence into American life.

It amazed me how strongly designers feel about a typeface. One of the biggest surprises was the strong animosity Paula Scher felt towards Helvetica. She even went on to say that she felt Helvetica was  directly associated to and a cause of the Vietnam War. This opened my eyes to how passionate people are about typefaces and the use of them in society.

When working with typefaces and designs, one of the designers explained the fine line between simple, powerful, and meaningful, and simple and boring. I thought this was a very interesting yet important statement to keep in mind when designing and using typefaces.

After watching Helvetica, I am now constantly aware of the use of typeface, and everywhere I look I can’t help but notice the chosen typefaces, sizes, widths, and overall designs. When working on my own projects, I will now be aware of all of these concepts and how they will impact the viewers and their receptions.

Isabel Engelbrekt

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