Don’t you just love guessing the typeface every time you look at some text. Ever since I’ve been studying the typography, I can’t help myself but try to guess the typeface/fonts everywhere I go and/or whatever I look at or read. At some point it starts to drive me crazy, because I do it subconsciously and then catch myself doing it.
It especially drives me crazy if I can’t guess the font, or, when I see that there’s less diversity in the fonts that the surroundings use.
We had an interesting discussion in one of my typography classes, way back, about the fact that in the beginning of the 20th Century, for example, the business owners (from store owners and first banks to the medical offices and entertainment centers) made an effort to use the HANDMADE typeface.
They would, literally, hire the designers/design shops to carve out the letters from such materials as wood and metal, for example, and literally paint the letters over, using the old school mediums. This is why, when you look at the vintage photos of, say, New York City scene, you can see how different the business signs were – they were unique.
Isn’t this one a piece of a typographic art?
You might not notice it unless you have something to do with the typography and/or design industry, but now, if you look at those vintage photos, take a note of the street signs. It’s like a ‘book guide of the street sign design”.
However, nowadays, there are so many businesses around that use identical, horrible typefaces – if you can even call it a typeface, next to some of the good typeface and these ‘neighbor relations’ ruin the whole atmosphere of the creative spirit around.
I live in NYC and if you also live in a big city, take a look around. All these Deli and hardware stores, they use an almost ‘faceless’ typeface and it’s ruining it for the city.
Taken that I walk a lot in the city, I look at the store signs and they annoy me. However, It’s different, thank god, with the restaurants.
A smart restaurant owner would want to create a unique sign that reflects the whole brand identity, so most of the restaurants, while competing for the space and customer, would want to differentiate themselves from all the other restaurants around. And some cities are better than the others in doing so – especially when it also comes to the interior designs.
Moreover, if you, like me, have studied and/or still study the typefaces, you would, most likely, at least know why a certain type(s) is used in the content related to a specific period of time and/or ‘theme’ – those that are used to describe (set a mood) for a certain period of time, like the 20s or 70s times.
That’s said, would you want to guess the typeface in this one?