Die Schrift auf der Eselsbrücke

Mnemonics to tell apart
four widely-used and similar fonts
For this school project I had to explain the differences between
the four fonts: Helvetica, Univers, Futura and Gill Sans.
I decided to pick some unique traits of these fonts and illustrate them.
In German, mnemonics are called "Eselsbrücken," which literally
means donkey’s bridges. It is said that this phrase originates
in the idea that donkeys are afraid of water. So if somebody with
donkeys wanted to cross even the smallest creek he or she had
to build a simple bridge.
This means a detour, just like a memory aid seems to be.
 Because Helvetica and its name both come
from Switzerland, I based the first two ideas 
on mountains and mountain-climbing.
The third image quotes a swiss candy TV-ad
that most people at least in Austria grew up with.


The first picture refers to the questionable
question mark of Futura. The text says:
"Careful, where Futura was used, the question mark
may have been taken from a different typeface!".
The other two pictures refer to the phrase,
“Children are the future.”


Here I say, when identifying Univers, check
to make sure these signs of Helvetica are not present.
The second image illustrates the wider spacing
of Univers.
 


Gill Sans is associated with its creator, Eric Gill,
and his diaries, where he talks about sexually
abusing his own daughters and his dog, as
discovered by a biographer in the 80's. As Gill
died in 1940, only his donkeys can be held
responsible for what he did.
The third image uses the Gill "M" like a blanket:
Some people cover up the story, others cover
up the font by not using it anymore.

 Hope you enjoyed the lesson ;)

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