Fresh from the Field – Articulate Sans Typefafe and Specimen Book, Milk

1 year ago by

Designed by Milk Design Agency Articulate Sans is a legibility enhanced typeface for people with low vision. The type specimen showcases the construction, character and effect of the typeface.

The Brief:

Millions suffer from poor or impaired vision and typography has a role to play in enhancing people’s everyday life through type functionality to improve legibility. Helping people to navigate, understand at speed and connect in a moment. Articulate Sans is a legibility enhanced typeface that bridges the cognition gap, designed to perform brilliantly and beautifully.

‘Articulate Sans. A legibility enhanced sans serif typeface.’ communicates the black and white path to clarity showing not only the mechanics of its typography but illustrating its character and effect in its purpose — to remove grey area.

Design Response:

This type specimen book was designed to showcase and sample the construction, method & character of the sans serif typeface. Illustrating visually and thematically, the power of type to bring information into focus while focusing on the typographic science that enables it in the most clear and powerful way. It plays with dynamics of content and format, where within the formality of a hard-bound book, the information demonstrates how it’s made to serve the goal of enhancing sight and creating clarity. To that end, content is unconstrained by the books dimension and focusses on reinforcing an idea with expansive use of texture, typographic scale and bold and impactful wordplay. The science of function delivered with emotion and action.

The specimen is book-ended with a blurred journey of grey to visualise the uneasy feeling of impaired sight and involves the reader in the challenge articulate aims to solve as it gradually brings things to a black and white, 20/20 vision.

As the objective was to create legibility with beauty and character, the typeface is explained in character itself with the interaction of word play and graphic theming working together to explain aspects such as universality and connection. As much of articulates task was to work at scale with aesthetics, it uses scale to reinforce that point, bringing up close the technical workings.

Layout was partly inspired in part by Dutch ophthalmologist Herman Snellen’s eye chart. Much of the typography shown, almost asks the reader to self-test Articulate for themselves, as words and figures are presented in lists, in descending scale and with amplified detail.

‘Articulate Sans. A legibility enhanced sans serif typeface.’ uses its medium to support the idea of enhancing legibility. It is purposefully black and white, removing the grey area. Black gilding has been applied to each of the page edges, which works in seamlessly with the black and white cover to provide contrast with the white pages inside. A complete removal of grey from the colour palette enhances the idea of legibility and cognition and communicates clarity and legibility.


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