Typography: mixing and matching typefaces may sound complex as it seems but the real thing about it is it’s not. To explain it in a simple matter, here are some tips to further understand the complex typeface relationships.
When combining typefaces, the most important keys to consider are the contrast and mood of a typeface. Mixing typefaces do require practice but if exercised hard enough plus applying the principles of typefaces effectively, mixing and matching would be no sweat.
Contrast is the amount of difference between typefaces. Typefaces that are similar tend to clash when mixed together resulting into a confusing layout, making a viewer ask if is it only one typeface or not.
Applying effective contrast do have a few principles to rely on, namely:
Often thought of as “light”, “regular”, “medium”, and the “bold” options of a typeface but there is more to weight than just those. Each typeface has a unique weight to begin with. And to properly mix typefaces regarding weight, there should be balance.
Generally, when stylizing, you’d be probably talking about “regular or italic”, or even what color or effect you’d want to add to the typeface. Decorating a typeface depends on what you’d want your typeface to feel. Creating an aura for a typeface, making it come alive.
Scale talks about the typeface’s size. Applying the principle of scaling when mixing typefaces create distinction. Creating an independent spotlight to further highlight the typeface’s aura. At some cases, it also creates hierarchy to the typefaces. Making a typeface look powerful to the other. Example of which is the relationship of a title and its information. Clearly, a title should be bigger among the rest because it should be iconic.
CLASSIFICATION and STRUCTURE
When matching typefaces, you’d want to select ones that are not of the same family. It would be best if typefaces would be paired up by another typeface which had extreme differences although with a little tangent connection. A good example would be “enemies”. One could or would be totally different from another but one similar thing about them is that they hate each other resulting into a complete rivalry. Although combining typefaces with the same classification would sometimes work, the rivalry rule would be applied in reverse. Making the typefaces very similar, but with little differences that make it easy to determine that they’re two different typefaces. In structure, we generally talk about a typeface’s physical appearance. It creates a perfect mixture if two typefaces have perfectly similar height, or if two typefaces have completely different weight.
COLOR and TEXTURE
Applying color and/or texture adds visual contrast or unify dissimilarities of typefaces. Example of which is when you need to add contrasts among typefaces that are nearly identical. If you have entirely different typefaces, color and texture can unify those typefaces, creating harmony between them. Keep in mind that the principles of color theory is applied to typography so avoid mixing colors that do not go well with each other.
Going for totally different typefaces do go well with each other in some cases, it can be a great option if you’re working with display or script typefaces but it can be difficult to find typefaces with effective contrast that aren’t too dissimilar. So, rather than trying to find typeface with tangent connections, try mixing typefaces that are really different from each other.
The mood of the typefaces you select is essential to the way they work together. Mood can be anything from formal to casual, fun or serious, modern or classic, or anything. This is where most people bump into trouble when mixing typefaces. Mixing typefaces that not only have complementary moods, but also have moods to match the project you’re designing is crucial.
Always remember that type is important because it’s an unconscious persuader, attracting attention, sets the style of a document or projects, and defines the feel of it without the viewer being conscious of it. The right typeface can encourage people to view your message or project. Choosing the wrong one could result into a project that’s ignored, because of the unattractive mixture of typefaces. But, with all the different typefaces today, it’s easily forgotten that there’s nothing like classic typefaces used well by somebody who knows how to use it. Try to pick a typeface you really like and use it over and over for months. This kind of exercise will limit you but it can serve as a useful reminder that the wide variety of choices of typefaces is no substitute for quality.