Graphic Designer’s Resource Guide: Typography

Guess what? It’s your lucky day! We’ve been carefully cultivating a list of our favorite design resources and will be posting them somewhat regularly for your increased productivity power. (You can find our last post about photo resources here).

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Type envy. It’s that burning sensation felt in the deepest pits of a designer’s heart, when they’ve fallen head over heels for a typeface they can’t identify or just simply can’t fit into the project budget. Well, don’t despair. There are cures for this seemingly never-ending heartache.

Lost Type Co-op
Lost Type is one of those dream-come-true websites for type nerds. They have a great selection of fonts AND, get this, they use a pay-what-you-want fee structure. So if you want to try a font out to make sure it works in your design and then donate some money, you can do that. Or, you can just download it for free if you’re strapped for cash.
Ten Dollar Fonts
TDF has some really cool display typefaces—and yes, they’re only $10 to purchase if you’re buying them for personal use (you’ll have to purchase a commercial license to use them for non-personal projects).
The League of Moveable Type
The League offers some really great typefaces (League Gothic, hello, I love you) for free. Even better, many of their fonts are available to use for the web with @font-face. Because who really wants to use Arial yet again for a new website design when something much prettier is available?
Fontshop Plugin
The Fontshop plugin lets you try any Fontshop font on your artwork within Photoshop without having to purchase the font first. Try before you buy!
When you’re looking for a very specific (and probably kitschy) typeface for a headline and don’t want to splurge on the actual font, go to Photo-Lettering. You can set your type for $7 and download an outlined vector file of it.
Gerren Lamson (.com)
Do you love hand-drawn type as much as we do, but want to forgo the hand cramping and smeared Sharpie/graphite all over your forearm? Gerren Lemson offers some very sweet hand-drawn type on his website, and it’s inexpensive to boot.
What the Font
“Dear Client, I need your brand-approved font, but I don’t know what it is. Please advise.” Before you send that email, do them a favor and visit’s “What the Font?” tool first. Upload a screen shot of the font in question, and What the Font can usually identify it (or recommend something close). Chances are it will save both you and your client a lot of time.
Next time on the Designer’s Resource Guide, we’ll be talking about textures, free art, and Photoshop actions.