Fun with Formatting
Here at IPI, we are a bit obsessive about our formatting. Every writer, researcher, free-lancer, and assistant gets a document template and formatting guidelines as soon as they come on board. (This, along with instructions on coffee-machine usage, actually makes up the entirety of our staff training).
Garamond is our font of preference. Wikipedia tells me that Garamond is a group of typefaces named after the 16th-century French punch-cutter Claude Garamond. They are distinguished by the small bowl of the a and the small eye of the e.
It turns out that there are dozens of Garamonds. The Garamond revival began in the early 20th century when several printers designed fonts based on a type specimen stored at the National Printing Office in France. Turns out, that font was actually designed by printer Jean Jannon, working a century after Garamond! But the name stuck, and inspired other printers to return to the original, leading to a true diversity of Garamond fonts.
The font we use is Garamond MT, which was developed in 1924 at Stempel AG in Germany and was inspired by the true Claude Garamond. Why do we love Garamond? Some people say it’s the graceful curves, the balanced strokes, and the lightly rounded serifs. One blogger made it a point to compare Garamond Premier Pro (“graceful and elegant”) with Times New Roman (“clumsy and amateurish”). “Let us change the default font in Microsoft Word this very minute,” he declared. In our office, it’s already been done.
Another artist has gone so far as to put typography in motion by creating a video called “Garamond?” “Typography as apocalypse,” one commenter remarked. “I like it, but it scares me.”