Tracing typefaces

AMB garn in various typefaces
Tracings of Garamond, Helvetica, Bodoni, and Futura.
AMB garn set in various typefaces.
AMB garn, as composed in Illustrator for tracing.
  • What are the differences between these typefaces? What do they have in common? What is unique to each?
Futura and Helvetica are first and foremost sans-serif typefaces. Garamond and Bodoni are serifed. Futura and Bodoni both have strong geometrical features – Futura with its circular g and a, and triangular and pointed A and M, and Bodoni with its purely rectangular serifs. Garamond is more organic than any other of the typefaces in this selection, with its bracketed serifs and lightly italic form.
  • Where do they get thick or thin? Which ones have a lot of contrast?
The thicks and thins within the serifed fonts are motivated by a nibbed pen. The sans-serif typefaces have less variation in thicks and thins, comparatively. Garamond and Bodoni have the largest amount of contrast, followed at a distance by Futura. Helvetica has the least contrast of the group.
  • What is the angle of stress for each?
The angle of stress for all of these typefaces is vertical with the exception of Garamond. Garamond has a more acute angle of stress, as is characteristic of Old Style typefaces.