Helvetica

The film Helvetica is an independent feature length documentary about typography and graphic design. Helvetica was directed by Gary Hustwit and was released in 2007. Helvetica is a type of typography that is very appealing to the eye, because of it’s simplicity, and is used all over in many businesses, posters, and signs, along with it’s many other uses. Helvetica came to be in 1957. Helvetica was originally called Neue Haas Grotesk, but it was decided to change the name to Helvetica so it would be more marketable in the U.S. Helvetic came from a Latin name in Switzerland. According to Massimo Vignelli only a few typefaces are necessary. He doesn’t think that typefaces should be expressive, he thinks they should be simple enough to get the message across, therefore he likes Helvetica. Helvetica is a very clear and neat typeface, you can convey many different emotions or feelings through Helvetica, such as trying to be passionate, mean, or even fancy. Today many designers use many typefaces, and Vignelli doesn’t think that’s necessary. Like Helvetica, typeface should be clear, legible, and simple.

Although, there are some people that dislike Helvetica, for many various reasons. According to Erik Spiekermann Helvetica used to be good but It has been used too much. He doesn’t think it’s going to go away, and has become like air to people. Everybody needs to use it. Also, Helvetica is too boring, it has no contrast, and needs a lot of space. If it’s smushed together then it doesn’t look right, and becomes a nightmare. Depending on the typeface of something that will affect how marketable the item is. Helvetica is too dull, blank, and lacks form. He thinks that there’s a need for change now. Another person who hates Helvetica is Paula Scher, because Helvetica is too clean for her.  Scher likes her typography to have personality and have spirit likes drawings. She is also morally opposed to Helvetica. Because it’s used in supporting wars, she feels that if she uses Helvetica it would be like supporting the war. Just because something is legible it doesn’t mean it communicates to the person. The best thing about designing something is the emotional response you can get from it.

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