THE NON-DESIGNER'S TYPE BOOK
The most legible type
To make your text the most legible, use:
* A plain sans serif with an average x-height.
* A regular or medium weight (sometimes bold when appropriate).
* Lowercase letters (plus capitals where they belong).
Jf Not condensed or expanded or oblique (slanted).
* A little extra letter spacing in small point sizes (below io point);
less letter spacing in large sizes (above 14 or 18 point).
Which of the following type samples is the most legibile?
1. Few forgive without a fuss.
I. Ü~wßrtiVu mtksKt ólJhss.
3. Few forgive without a fuss, ш^ошRoman
/>. Few forgivi» Without » f II « В . 5:h>hli
5. Few FonqivE without л Fuss.
6. Few forgive without a fuss.
7. Few rorgive without a hiss.
¿iCqm, ж noi( ud¿)
nqtOQ эрѵл£ '9 :иэаъту
3 : THE ART OF LEGIBILITY. 49
Temper the rules with choice!
Now, please remember that these guidelines do not mean you should never
use certain typefaces or formatting! It just means you must look carefully
at your typeface and make a conscious choice—if your piece requires a
high level of legibility, watch for the danger signs. If your job is one that
people can take a tiny bit longer to absorb, or if the words are not unusual,
then feel free to play with features that are not at the top of the legibility
list. Use that beautiful face with the tall ascenders and small x-height for a
sign, or that lovely, graceful script for a special title, or that extra-bold face
for web page headlines. People can read it, of course. Know the guidelines,
be conscious of your typeface and your purpose of communication, and
make clear decisions based on knowledge.
And don't forget Herb Lubalin's theory, as presented on page 42. Lighten
up and smile.