Once upon a time, only typesetters needed to know about kerning, leading, ligatures, and hanging punctuation. Today, however, most of us work on computers, with access to hundreds of fonts, and we’d all like our letters, reports and other documents to look as good - and as readable - as possible. But what does all the confusing terminology about ink traps, letter spacing, and visual centring mean, and what are the rules for good typography? Type Matters! is a book of tips for everyday use, for all users of typography, from students and professionals to anyone who does any layout design on a computer. The book is arranged into three chapters: an introduction to the basics of typography; headline and display type; and setting text. Within each chapter there are sections devoted to particular principles or problems, such as selecting the right typeface, leading, and the treatment of numbers. Examples throughout show precisely what makes good typography and, crucially, what doesn’t. Authoritatively written and designed by a practitioner and teacher of typography, Type Matters! has a beautifully clear layout that reinforces the principles discussed throughout.
Type Matters is unpretentious, unassuming, and reductive. Explanations rely heavily on elegant typographic diagrams that dominate most pages. Quotes from older typesetting manuals provide the text for the diagrams, set in a variety of classic types. Combined with the black and red printing and cream paper the book takes on the feel of a vintage type specimen. Readers are expected to study the diagrams, and some concepts, like x-height, are only introduced via a diagram. Once the book has been read it will make a great reference tool for students and designers alike, especially those less inclined to read lengthier, more comprehensive texts.
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