Sunday, November 09, 2008

Web Styles/Font Fashion

Two very different web sites, one for the Telluride Library, the other for a horse show in Sacramento. See how they're both using the fancy slightly retro script getting squeezed by other letters, with typographic decorations (in second one), and textural, almost wood block printing behind?

When I saw the library site I thought, "Gee, couldn't they have gotten that type laid out better?"

Then when I saw the horse show site I started thinking maybe this is a style, and if so there must be a bigger site or tv show where they're getting their inspiration. Look familiar to anyone? They even used an embedded font that resembled old time type setting, where letters aren't quite aligned.

I noticed in a number of pro Obama ads this campaign, that they were using 19th century lettering, often with a saloon feeling. Never thought that would come back as cutting edge. I guess it implies, um, history, straight truth, beer?

I may be building a simple horse site for my old trainers so I'm checking out the territory.


Namowal said...

I bet the folksy, slightly off typography may be a response to the slick look of a typical web page, with their perfectly aligned letters and content.
Interesting how yesterday's clunkiness is reborn as today's coolness. The half tone dots of old comics were reborn as pop art. Crude video game characters returned as modern icons (on T-shirts, stickers etc..) I wonder if dithering patterns from 8 bit color schemes will return as the texture to use within five or ten years?

stray g said...

I think that just because we have all this technology available does not mean design is improving since Swiss-style grids! I'm a minimalist myself. However, I know that in Tennessee, old letterpress type is hugely "in." There is an old poster company called Hatch Show Print in Nashville, and a new one called Yee-Haw Industries that a friend owns in Knoxville.

Becky said...

"History, straight truth, beer" -- that's going to be the platform that I run on!

Linda said...

Sally, Stray listed this URL in her comment, but just in case you didn't hit it, here it is again. Their work is stupendous!! I think this style has your name written all over it. Here's some of Yee Haw's work:

Becky, I'll vote for you in an instant.

Sally said...

I did look at the yeehaw site this morning and thought it was amazing-- then got hustled out the door before I could mention about it. Another example of great talent in Tennessee.

In the 70's there used to be burlesque shows at the Strand Theatre on Market St. The lettering for the ads, all done by hand, was superb. For a while I was clipping all the ads but then I must have decided that was peculiar.

In the post I was going to mention the odd color combos, and how both had chosen the burgundy font. Then I noticed my header was burgundy font too!