Learning how to use my DSLR properly and aiming to make some small income from it means I’m going to have to learn some skills I never previously thought I would need. Granted, I could have spent more time on marketing in the past, something I am now trying to remedy. But photography is a visual art (obviously!) which needs some visual skills development to market.
I’m starting to realise how visual design can also be important for promoting my bread and butter – my written work. After all, social media is largely visual media. That means a writer likes me needs to capture as broad an audience as possible using graphics and photos and not just through the written word that I hope would lead to a client reaching out about some work.
Images are important for any graphic design image but just as important is the font. Yet it’s the one element we often overlooked. Good images can be ruined by a bad font. The context of an image can change drastically depending on which font you choose.
Fonting Without Prejudice
I’ve been spending time at Font Squirrel, more time than I have in the past even though it’s my go to resource for ebook cover fonts. Both the Dead Lock (Destroy) and The Christmas Goblin (Mountains of Christmas) fonts came from there. The covers are on my fiction page.
If you haven’t heard of Font Squirrel before, I strongly recommend that you take a look. One of my first efforts at a graphic design was this simple banner for my Red Bubble products. The font is called Lobster Two. I think it’s rather nice for a retail banner.
As mentioned in a post from a few weeks back, I’ve recently subscribed to Photoshop SaaS. While my primary use is for photo editing, I’m also intending to use it to further some graphic design skills too as mentioned above. I’m especially looking forward to learning about and using the Smart Objects function for my Red Bubble promotional templates.
For a time, I used a font called Reey as the signature on my photos but found it a bit too extravagant and changed it to something simpler. I now primarily use architects daughter or gloria hallelujah (see the list below) as these are less extravagant, less intrusive, and rather easy on the eye.
Here are a few more pleasant fonts I’ve downloaded recently that I intend to put to good use. I’ve written the font’s name in the actual script. Good thinking Batman.
How to Choose the Right Font?
That’s a good question and one I’ve been pondering otherwise I wouldn’t have spent so much time on Font Squirrel recently nor gone to great lengths to find these fonts. How important is a font, really? It’s probably not the first aspect of design you’ll consider. It’ll probably one of the last but there are some reasons why you should give it more consideration than you do.
Look again at the Red Bubble banner above. Who in their right mind would have used something as perfunctory as Times New Roman for that, for example? It would have made the whole banner look ugly and amateurish, as would Arial and Calibri, the now default font for MS Word.
Yet these basic fonts do serve a purpose. I couldn’t write a piece of content for a client, or work on my novel, in something like Lobster Two as it would be too hard on the eyes eventually. But it does look nice on a graphic. To reiterate, I chose Lobster Two for the Red Bubble banner above because it’s aesthetically pleasing and has the right feel for promoting retail products.
Think About Context of Your Font
Some marketers would say a font represents your brand. But I would go a step further and say you should use different fonts depending on what you are trying to present. The video above says that the first point to consider is the audience. With that in mind, I wouldn’t use Destroy (the font I’m using for the Dead Lock cover) on the Red Bubble graphic above to sell my t-shirts, nor would I find Berkshire Swash useful on a horror book cover. There are contexts where these fonts would work. For example, Destroy would not look out of place advertising urban clothing.
- Consider the message you are trying to convey about your design to the audience. The message can be formal or informal, elegant or simple, neat and ordered or rough around the edges, denoting class and status or casual and leisurely and so on
- Consider the image(s) you’re using in the design too. They visual design and the font should complement each other, not clash. Also ensure you’re not sending the opposite message to the one intended. Look at these images. Imagine they relate to an ebook
The first could be any self-published romance ebook. The second sends a different message because I used the bloody font. The first thought that would go through a person’s head on seeing the second image is whether any of the people in the photo ended up with an axe buried in their’s.
Do you have any font tips or suggestions? Share them below!