What’s my type – Futura (Task 1)

The first font type I going to talk about is classic, geometric sans-serif, ‘Futura’ typeface. I will take take you through the origins of some of the most interesting and commonly used typefaces in design today.

futura_letters__full

Inspired by the Bauhaus:

Following the Bauhaus design philosophy, German type designer Paul Renner first created Futura between 1924 and 1926. Although Renner was not a member of the Bauhaus, he shared many of its views, believing that a modern typeface should express modern models rather than be a rivial of a previous design. Futura was commercially released in 1927, commissioned by the Bauer type foundry.

prenner_d12366i59

Untitled-1

While designing Futura, Renner avoided creating any non-essential elements, making use of basic geometric proportions with no serifs or frills. Futura’s crisp, clean forms reflect the appearance of efficiency and forwardness even today.

tumblr_m9xs42QmKM1rzom3ho1_1280

futura

Renner’s initial design experimented with several geometrically constructed character alternatives and old-style figures, which can be found in the typeface Architype Renner:
Text-ArchitypeOne1

The success of Futura spawned a range of new geometric sans-serif typefaces, such as Kabel and Century Gothic, among others. Now over 80 years since its creation, many foundries have released variations of Futura in the digital form, Adobe being the one of the most commonly used. Several international companies also use their own customized version of Futura, including Volkswagen (visible in their renowned advertising) and IKEA.

From the moon to the big screen:

Futura had the honor of being the first typeface on the moon, chosen for a commemorative plaque left by the astronauts of Apollo 11 in 1969.

Apollo11Plaque

Iconic filmmaker Stanley Kubrick used Futura religiously in many of his films, notably 2001: A Space Odyssey and Eyes Wide Shut.

“It was Stanley’s favourite typeface. It’s sans serif. He liked Helvetica and Univers, too. Clean and elegant… I was always trying to persuade him to turn away from them. But he was wedded to his sans serifs.”

– Tony Frewin, on working with Stanley Kubrick

514G8H1PC7L._SL500_SS500_

More recently, Wes Anderson has done the same with his films (The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic, etc), using Futura (specifically Futura Bold) almost exclusively in the artwork, credits, and even within the films.

Popularity today:

Futura (and its variants) have become an extremely popular typeface for countless corporate logos, commercial products, films and advertisements for years. In fact, so popular that certain art directors had began boycotting its use in with Art Directors Against Futura Extra Bold Condensed, published in 1992’s TDC Typography 13.

Regardless, Futura remains one of the most used (and loved) sans-serif fonts today with no signs of slowing down.

Examples:

kyt_futura_usage

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s