Spring 2018

Don’t judge a book by its title

Never Use Futura

Written and designed by Douglas Thomas
Princeton Architectural Press, $24.95, £17.95

Never judge a book by its title. If I had done that, I would never have opened Never Use Futura by Douglas Thomas. He claims in his introduction that he was told by his design teachers to never use Comic Sans, Papyrus, typefaces by Goudy or Zapf – or Futura. Huh? Since I am a self-taught graphic designer I cannot use my own education to compare, but in conversation with my students at Parsons School of Design and the School of Visual Arts, none has ever had a teacher tell them not to use Futura…

Cover designed by author Douglas Thomas.
Top:
Overlay comparison of commercially available digital iterations of Futura at 625 points, shown in Never Use Futura.

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Paul Shaw, letter designer and design historian, New York

Read the full version in Eye no. 96 vol. 24, 2018

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Eye is the world’s most beautiful and collectable graphic design journal, published quarterly for professional designers, students and anyone interested in critical, informed writing about graphic design and visual culture. It is available from all good design bookshops and online at the Eye shop, where you can buy subscriptions and single issues. You can see what Eye 96 looks like at Eye Before You Buy on Vimeo.

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