What is the role of fonts in giving a newspaper its ‘look’?
The major part of newspaper design is based on typography. Fonts are selected on the basis of legibility and readability. And it gives a better ‘look’ for your newspaper. There has been this serif v/s sans serif debate in the last century. Can you elaborate on that?Is the debate still an issue amongst designers? Are newspapers still conservative about using sans serif?
It is no more an issue. Modern newspaper designers are using both Serif and Sans Serif fonts in their designs. But then it all depends on your taste. Readers are used to read small text in serif. What alignment do you use for the body text?
We use ‘justified’ alignment for news items. In features it can be left aligned. How has typography evolved in the last century?
More than seventy five years after the development of Times Roman, there is a boomlet of new typefaces for newspapers. It seems that nowadays you can hardly redesign a paper without one. Custom fonts got going again in magazines in the early 90s, with Rolling Stone in 1977, and picked up steam with the advent of desktop publishing. Newspapers, lagged a few years behind, but by the mid-90s new typefaces were made for specific papers.
An academic question, can you briefly explain the philosophies of the various design movements in the 20th Century and how they have affected typefaces? Are there any strict rules of typography?
Well it all depends! I prefer reader friendleness. If yes, then is there often a conflict between esthetics and instruction and between esthetics and functional efficiency? How much does technology shape typography?
Now with the advent of computers and DTP, you can create and print any typeface, all at the same cost. So have the rules of typography bended or changed? Can the choice of fonts make a text look authoritative or casual? Could you give some examples please?
Yes it can. Just experience it while reading your own daily newspaper!