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Drop #317 (2023-08-15): Typography Tuesday
The Ultimate Typography Cheat Sheet; Alphabettes; The Font Memory Game
Tuesday's are quickly becoming one of my fav days due to this reader requested weekly theme edition of The Drop. Having the privilege and opportunity to revisit scads of my typography bookmarks is just like a walk down memory lane and revisiting some old mates.
We'll take Typography Tuesday into some interesting directions, today, with three resources I suspect will be fun for all.
This is an AI-generated summary of today's Drop.
I turned, once more, to Anthropic's Claude, since it has been doing a fair job of edit-free summaries (until today). My initial prompt “Please provide a three-bullet, concise summary of the attached Markdown document, and make sure to include links to the primary resources for each bullet.” was an abysmal failure as it did not cause Claude to include the links, but did provide well-crafted summaries.
As you'll see in the (above) link (it goes to the chat session), using yesterday's prompt provided helped it include the links, but the summaries weren't as solid. I gave up after the third try and manually included the links to the first summary attempt.
The Ultimate Typography Cheat Sheet by Christian Heilmann is a web version of Martin Silvertant's Anatomy Of Typography, providing a helpful visual reference for typography terms and features.
Alphabettes is a blog showcasing work, commentary, and research on lettering, typography, and type design by women and nonbinary people. It contains informative articles like two recent ones on Ukrainian typography.
The Font Memory Game by Matej Latin helps train your eyes to recognize different fonts by having you match pairs of fonts, similar to the classic Concentration card game. Matej is also the author of the book Better Web Typography.
The Ultimate Typography Cheat Sheet
It's been ~seven months since our abode was touched directly by the now, endemic pandemic. Two of us (me, included) — as longtime Drop readers will know — were gifted with the present that is long covid. The lingering respiratory impacts have — for the most part — subsided for me, but there are days and weeks when the “brain fog” is, at times, incredibly debilitating. This happens to (so far) be one of those weeks.
I mention the above not for sympathy, but as an opportunity to note a newfound appreciation for “cheat sheets”. Those aren't something I've ever needed, and kind of never wholly understood why they existed, until now. My only real “superpower” has been instant factual and visual recall for any information or image I've ever come across, and that ability is severely impacted on the bran fog days. On those/these days, cheat sheets are a godsend.
Despite never previously fully appreciating cheat sheets, I have bookmarked an inordinate number of them over the years, since I knew/know others found/find them useful, and I like to help folks out whenever I can.
The section header image is a screenshot of Christian Heilmann's Typography Cheat Sheet. It's a web version of Martin Silvertant's Anatomy Of Typography. Both are great resources for those new to typography, and for those who may forget a term or feature in this space.
Alphabettes.org is a showcase for work, commentary, and research on lettering, typography, and type design. Our loose network is here to support and promote the work of all women and nonbinary people in our fields. Currently (December 2021), Alphabettes has 250+ members from around the world in various areas and levels of activity.
[Their] blog was originally assembled on a whim in August 2015 by Amy Papaelias and Indra Kupferschmid. One year later, the site underwent a refresh, thanks in huge part to Nicole Dotin. The current headline typeface is Pilot Semi-Bold by Aleksandra Samuļenkova and the body typeface is Dover Serif Text by Robin Mientjes. [Their] past headers are here.
The articles are super-informative and cover a wide array of topics.
Two recent ones on Ukrainian typography:
were a joy to consume, and I suspect you'll find precious nuggets of your own as you peruse their archives.
The Font Memory Game
As Matej notes, recognizing different styles of fonts is one of the most challenging parts of typography. The memory game he made helps you train your eyes to notice the smallest details. It's akin to the meatspace Concentration game, where one reveals pairs of cards at a time to try to find matches.
Despite having a (fairly frustrating) timer on display, Matej's game forces you to slow down and consider the subtle characteristics of the displayed typefaces to find its matching partner in the grid.
The section header is from Matej's book, which I highly recommend. The digital/print+digital versions of the book come with numerous extra resources that are handy to keep around as both reference guides and starter resources for typography-centric web creations.
Another, belated, Happy Indictment Day to all who celebrate! ☮
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