The ABC's of Typography, 2nd ed.

by Sandra Ernst Moriarty

Art Direction Book Company, Glenbrook CT, 1996

ISBN: (paper)-0-88108-195-7

About this Book:

Type is a creation of both art and science. Graphic designers look at type as a basic tool of their art. Writers look at type as a functional element that delivers their words. Those who are untrained in either editing or design, look at type and probably don't even notice it. And that's the way it should be when the type works well with both the message and the design.

Since typography class are rare, except in some art schools, this book was developed in a self-study format. It is for the student, as well as the working professional, for whom a typography class is not available. Since it is basic it begins with rudimentary concepts-such as letter shapes, type measurements, and type families.

Questions are also included throughout so readers can test themselves as they proceed through the book. Answers to the questions of fact are given in the Appendix.

One aspect of this book is unique: the reader has the opportunity to develop some of the illustrations themselves. Type samples and other examples have been included to help you "see" the distinctions and differences, but space has been left in the margins for illustrations that you develop as a learning exercise.

This is a pragmatic introduction to basic typography. It's a how-to-do-it book-how to see the differences in typefaces, how to specify, how to mark up, and how to copyfit. The book's goal is to show the reader how to use type, not how to set it.


1. Your Printer's Primer

2. Composition

3. Type Measurement

4. Spacing

5. Type Identification

6. Copyfitting

7. type Specifying

8. Readabilityand Legibility

9. Designing with Type

10. Desktop Computer Technology

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