For this assignment, we were encouraged to experiment with the font feature in Illustrator to explore how choice of typeface affects the meaning and emotional feeling of a word. I chose to use different typefaces to portray the word “relaxation” and this is what I came up with.
Here, we have Lucida Handwriting Italic. The connectivity and flowing nature of these letters creates a soothing, flowing movement that I find to induce feelings of relaxation. I think the effect that it gives off mimics that of the waves of an ocean, which many seem to find relaxing, including myself.
Then, we have Trebuchet MS, a Sans Serif font. I enjoy the kerning of this letterform, as well as the slight curvature of some of the letters, particularly of the “r”, “l”, “x”, and “t”, which seem to simulate the sense of movement felt by the Lucida Handwriting Italic above. Additionally, their bolded nature helps to evoke feelings of stability. I think that this simultaneous use of both the curvature and bolding of the letters creates a relaxing feel.
Next up is Hoefler Text. Although this typeface is very relatable to Trebuchet MS, it is a Serif font. I think this characteristic makes it to be a slightly more effective portrayal of “relaxation”. I think this is primarily due to the more rounded nature of the terminals of the letterform. I also think that the thinner and more slender stems, ascenders and descenders help to enhance this relaxing effect.
Then, we have Chaparral Pro, another Serif font. Feelings of relaxation are induced for similar reasons as above for the typeface Hoefler Text. However, comparatively, Chaparral Pro is a bit thinner letterform, which I feel may amplify the emotional effect of the text.
Finally, we have what I feel to be the most emotionally effective portrayal of “relaxation” of the five, Apple Chancery. It’s a Sans Serif typeface, so the curvature of the terminals, ascenders and descenders induce a comforting, soothing feel and its’ thin, yet bolded nature portrays a flowing, yet stable effect. The kerning serves to effectively contribute to this feel since it is not overly minimal or maximal. Essentially, it combines key characteristics from each of the four fonts above to make one emotionally effective typeface.