Black Letter Type Category

Free Video Tutorial and Guide

Welcome back everyone to our short talks on The Classifications of Typography here at Noble Desktop. The type category we are looking at in this video is known as Blackletter or Gothic.

Video Transcription

According to some historians, this is considered to be the first official typeface ever created somewhere around the 1450s.

Here is an example of that typeface. It is known as Textura and it was hand-carved by Johannes Gutenberg, during the time that he created his very first bible. The original Textura typeface included standard abbreviations and a large number of ligatures or connected letters.

Now we’ll take a look at a sampling of some classic Blackletter typefaces.

Blackletter typefaces are based on calligraphy, sometimes called Gothic or Old English. They have strong vertical strokes and often contain highly decorated Capital letters.

While Blackletter styles tend to look old school, or antique, we still see this typeface genre used in branding applications, packaging, movie posters, and more.

With its distressed parchment paper-like background, sword, shield, and scroll motif, this title screen from the 1938 film The Aventures of Robin Hood is a rich and classic example of the Blackletter typeface category in action.

This is the MastHead of the New York Times on the New York Times Building in New York, and again on the paper itself. The typeface is Engravers Old English BT. The use of this Blackletter typeface provides the moniker with a recognizable, authoritative, and powerful presence. The New York Time logo is unmistakable worldwide and clearly, it wouldn't be the same without the use of this bold Blackletter typeface.

Next up is this Mini movie poster from the film Lady Bird. The Blackletter example here is Adobe Amador.

It is stately, formal, and in this context perhaps slightly ironic (of course you have to see the film to fully get it)… but it also hints at the Catholic school element in the film, and the serious nature that the main character considers herself to exemplify.

The Last example in the Blackletter category is the Corona beer logo and label using the font called Ancient.

Along with the stylized griffins representing protection, strength, and vigilance and the kings crown. The Use of Blackletter here evokes a sense of gusto and established quality. The designer’s aim here is to subliminally tell us that this is a really good beer.

Next up we will take a look at the serif class or category.

How to Learn Typography & Graphic Design

Master graphic design with hands-on training. Graphic design is the production of digital and print media that follows certain conventions of style, color, and typography in order to evoke a positive reaction from its viewers.

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