Type Specimen- Research

My typeface is Avenir. I am creating a type specimen for this font and I need to research the Historical insight into the designer of the typeface. I also wanted to find information on the design it’s self and why it was designed. I also wanted to find out where it was used in the real world.

I first looked into collecting typography posters to give me a idea of what’s already out there and how they have laid it out in a creative way.


All of these posters have different and interesting layout and all work out in different ways. I feel some of them work more than others. The black one for new Baskerville I think works the best because it has all the information needed but in a fun and exciting way. These five poster show how type can create an interesting design without using imagery the type explain the story without it.

I used these poster and sketched out there layout in my sketchbooks. This helped me to see that all of these posters have a very simple layout.

I then decided to look at existing type specimen, I first looked at Avenir type specimen to see what other have produced but I then thought if I look at all type specimen I will get a better understand and have more ideas for my own design.

I then went into my research of my paragraphs

Paragraph one – History

Avenir is geometric sans serif designs of the early part of the 20th century designed by  Adrian Frutiger. He used the look  of both the past and the future for inspiration. Frutiger wanted to  add a bit of organic humanism to the design to allow the Avenir from the rigid geometric overtones of the earlier designs. The design is based on Erbar and Futura. Compared to Futura, the x-height and the aperture are bigger. Designer Adrian Frutiger was a swiss typeface designer who was influenced by typography. He designed other font such as Universe and Fruitger.

Paragraph Two – Why it was designed?

The typeface got its name from the word “future,”. It has been called “the type of the future” this is because of its geometric look and modern shape. Avenir is the french translation and it is a sans-serif geometric typeface which has been inspired by the classic style of Futura (1927) and Erbar (1922). Avenir  original version had just three weights, when it became popular three more weights were introduced making it what it is today.  The type designer Akira Kobayashi used the typeface Avenir and reworked the entire font to fix digital display problems; they called it Avenir Next which has 24 fonts. The style of Avenir is considered to be geometric but Frutiger wanted it to have more of a organic feel to become more humanised, it has a lot of stylistics qualities of Futura but slightly varied weight on the strokes to bring it back it bit and make it less thick and blocky like the Futura’s letterforms. The style really doesn’t reflect the name because its modern and clean but there a humanisation of the style makes just enough of a difference for this font to be acceptable for body type. Avenir font uses horizontal tails on the Q, the G is squared of towards the end. The a is double story and the g is single story. The j and the y have curved rather than straight tails.

Paragraph three – Where it was used?

Avenir is normally found to be used for blocks of text and is used by variety of different companies such as dwell magazines, Scottish water and Lg electronics. A popular brand identity font used by the web search engine Alta Vista, the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield, among others.


Avenir- font classification

Humanist sans-serif  – geometric sans-serif







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