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Helvetica and Lupton

Part 1: I was really shocked in the best of ways after watching “Helvetica”, as I never knew how big of a role that typeface played in society. Although it can be seen as a trivial element of society, it is just a typeface, however, it really does structure many things about society as a result of it being everywhere. It was so intriguing to see how many companies continued to use Helvetica for their word-marks. It was almost as if a company would try so hard to not use Helvetica, but resort to it at the last minute. Oddly enough, the logos that those companies used succeeded due to the widespread popularity of Helvetica. It amazed me how one typeface could come from out of nowhere and completely rule the world of typography. Even more interesting is how for years typographers have looked for an alternative, or simply something better, for Helvetica, but no typeface has been found yet, and it doesn’t look like one will come by anytime soon.

Part 2: One of the more helpful and informational aspects of Letter is the section on how to mix typefaces. Lupton used an extremely clever and witty analogy when comparing a combination of typefaces to making a salad. It never really struck me how diverse typefaces are and how many there actually are. Mixing typefaces brings together so many different styles and elements to create something as intricate as a salad. At the same time though, I have always found it difficult to mix two different typefaces so in order to create that salad it would first take some thought.

Part 3: In Text one of the aspects that really stuck out to me was the section on spacing. It never struck me that the spacing between words or paragraphs can affect a block of text so much. The line, “Design is as much an act of spacing as an act of marking,” speaks volume, as organization of a page is so crucial, so spacing serves as one of the keys to a well organized piece. Bad spacing on a project essentially leads to a sloppy project, and that is never an acceptable way to work.

Nathaniel Band

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