Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Type Zen

“Our personal design sense and acuity is on display every day in our presentations, our documents, our meetings, our e-mails, and in the way we think and express our ideas,” says Garr Reynolds, author of Presentation Zen and Presentation Zen Design.

Design matters. Well-designed objects not only look good, but they work better, and people have a positive emotional response. “People make instant judgments about whether something is attractive, trustworthy, professional, too slick, and so on. This is a visceral reaction – and it matters.”
The first chapter of Presentation Zen Design talks about type or font, something we often take for granted. Reynolds repeats two of his key messages: Avoid Clutter and Create Harmony.

Those messages really hit home for me when I was reading an online publication. The unusual use of capitals and the combination of three or four different fonts was annoying. Rather than enhancing the content, it distracted my attention and interrupted the flow.

It was a good lesson for me to keep in mind the next time I was preparing a report or a handout.

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