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The 4 Jobs of Your Logo Font

Many entrepreneurs think that the font for their business name is like a trophy wife—just there to look pretty, all perfect hair and manicure. So, they try to find a font that looks cool, often without looking at any of the features of the font itself.

But, the font in your Logo Design is a busy little element. It works 4 jobs!

So, what are the font’s jobs?

The font’s job is to be legible and scalable, to make your business name look good, and to strengthen your entire brand story. Let’s break these elements down one at a time.

Free FontsTo be legible

Your business name should be able to be read easily, quickly, and clearly.

Make sure the letters are spaced far enough apart, so that they don’t bleed together visually or when printed.

Make sure that the letter shapes are distinguishable from one another—that your lower case “I” doesn’t look like an “L,” for example.

Also ensure that you can read it at a glance. Most people won’t pore over your logo. They’ll just skim it. You want to make sure that the font that you choose is not difficult to read. This becomes even more important when your logo is featured on a sign, vehicle, or billboard—where your viewers will be passing it at a fast pace.

At smaller sizes, the space between the dot and line in this lower case “I” might blur—which could make it look like a lower case “L”.

To be scalable

Your logo should be able to blow up to billboard size and scale down to postage stamp size and be readable across all of these different options. Make sure that legibility doesn’t suffer when size changes. Scaling up usually isn’t an issue, but scaling down can be a real problem on ornate or heavily stylized Free Fonts.

To make your business name look good

Choose a font that includes good letter shapes for all the letters in your business name. For example, some lower case Gs look pretty funky — so if your business name includes a G, you may want to stay away from fonts that include strange Gs like the one on the right.

Also, if you have a long business name, consider using a lighter font so that your business name doesn’t dominate the entire logo — you want the font to balance with the icon. The following example shows what happens to a logo when fonts are in versus out of balance, as in the example on the right:

You might also want to vary the font so that the most important words in the name stand out, giving the logo more visual interest. This can be as simple as changing color, size, or weight/boldness of the font or using 2 fonts together for more variety. Here are some examples of those techniques:

To support your brand definition

This is your font’s last job, and it can be done in different ways in your logo, depending on how much of your brand story is told by your Logo Design Tutorials and icon.

If you’ve told most of your story with the icon, then all the font needs to do is support that.


May 6, 2009 - Posted by | free fonts | , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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