Design insights & tutorials.

Fave Font: Knockout

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We all have our favorite bunch of typefaces we use on a regular basis. When I first started out I was a font-a-holic downloading every free font that I could get my hands on.

Over time, perhaps I’ve become less adventurous, but I’ve limited my pool to just a handful that I often use. Right now, my current favorite typefaces are Knockout, Gotham, Plantin, and Minister.

I’ve been using Knockout for my Weapons of Mass Creation branding and Parachute Journalists posters. It’s so versatile and has condensed and extended versions. Plantin and Minister are my serif typefaces of choice because of their subtle vintage flair and personality to their characters.

Knockout is versatile because it’s a “sweeping collection of 32 sans serifs.” It’s got 9 widths and 4 different weights.  It can be used for headlines and copy.

The sheer volume and variety here is what makes it so usable.  It was also designed by Hoefler & Frere-Jones who are masters at their craft.

The reason why I like Knockout, aside from its versatility, is mostly because I’m a fan of tall and condensed sans serif typefaces. I like the subtle details like how the “R” flares out at the bottom.

I used these the tall condensed styles because I like the bold and powerful statement that it creates. It’s definitely geared more towards poster art headlines or credits on a film poster. I like the way they stack up and fill a space.

So what is your favorite typeface? Can you show us examples of how you used it?

About the Author, Jeff Finley

I'm a partner at Go Media, a Cleveland web design and development firm. We also specialize in print design and branding. I started Weapons of Mass Creation Fest and wrote the book Thread's Not Dead, teaching artists and designers how to start a clothing company. In my spare time, I write songs and play drums in Campfire Conspiracy. I'm a happy husband and an aspiring b-boy and lucid dreamer.
Discover More by Jeff Finley

Discussion

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  • softwarerunners

    Indeed a cool font! – Joe Hendricks

  • roksan

    I'm with you on the whole tall, condensed sans serif fonts. Two of my favorite free fonts for headline type purposes are Franchise, and Tall, Dark & Handsome – Franchise is one I use frequently, it lends itself quiet well.

    I have a large collection of fonts, but I find I like one or two from each main category and tend to stick to them unless for a typography project. I quite like this font – Thanks for the heads up on it :D

    I just posted 10 of my favorite fonts from a variety of categories, such as serif, sans serif, handwritten (I find it's quite a pain to get one that looks “right” if ya know what I mean”, etc. Favorite at the moment: Harabara Hand.

    What's your favorite Web-safe font though?

    - Roksan

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      I can’t agree with you any more.

  • http://www.roksbe.com/ Roksbe

    I'm with you on the whole tall, condensed sans serif fonts. Two of my favorite free fonts for headline type purposes are Franchise, and Tall, Dark & Handsome – Franchise is one I use frequently, it lends itself quiet well.

    I have a large collection of fonts, but I find I like one or two from each main category and tend to stick to them unless for a typography project. I quite like this font – Thanks for the heads up on it :D

    I just posted 10 of my favorite fonts from a variety of categories, such as serif, sans serif, handwritten (I find it's quite a pain to get one that looks “right” if ya know what I mean”, etc. Favorite at the moment: Harabara Hand.

    What's your favorite Web-safe font though?

    - Roksan

  • http://www.gomedia.us Jeff Finley

    my fav web safe font is probably just Arial and Georgia. Hah.

  • http://twitter.com/pu_design Frank Puschmann

    Ein wirklich schöner Font und recht universell http://drp.ly/LAkae #knockout

  • Adam D

    I just wish i could afford that font package! its Beautiful :D

  • http://www.tasteofbrains.com/portfolio Justin Lascelle

    Verdana had a good run for a while, but it's all about Georgia and Arial these days.

    My love knows no boundaries when it comes to work created by H&FJ.

  • Scott

    What is the font you used for section titles (wmcfest.com) “Latest News” and “2010 Lineup” it looks close Sentinel? I've seen the font used before and like it. Bold, serifs, fresh.

  • http://www.gomedia.us Jeff Finley

    yeah same here, they're great

  • http://www.gomedia.us Jeff Finley

    That just Georgia – bold and italicized. I was using Plantin but I wanted it to be websafe, so I just went with the best alternative.

  • Scott

    Thank you. That's too funny. I often scream right past that typeface. Most awesome though because I don't have to buy THAT font.

  • mrcthms

    I absolutely adore Knockout, I use it a lot on my site and in my print work. Combining Knockout and Sentinel is kinda a match made in typography heaven.

  • Scott

    Can you tell me the font used at the bottom of the last poster “Yeah I'm questioning my motives…” ?

  • http://www.roksbe.com/ Roksbe

    Ahh yes, I liked Verdana, till I encountered a client who demanded everything anyone does for him be solely done in Verdana. Everything. Always. Wore me out.

    I'm likin Two Cn MT right now, and Garamond, but Georgia and Calibri tend to work well for nearly everything :D

  • http://www.slateism.com/ Aliah

    I wanted to know which kind of editing you did in the first picture?? You have given very nice effect . I mean too simple and sober. Can you share the idea??
    HP Slate Accessories

  • http://twitter.com/Bullardino Luigi Delussu

    I like the Museo font, nice, easy to customize, elegant.

  • Simon H.

    Right now, I have a thing for Gotham Ultra. I love the Sans Serif with that subtle retro feel to it and its boldness.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/simonh4/4499543873/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/simonh4/4457297886/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/simonh4/3996156936/

  • adam forrester

    Doing music/club flyers several days a week – I use condensed fonts often – this is a great one I didn't know about. Thanks!

    Other fave's include (of course) Future condensed – have had a lot of luck with Fiesta (free font) as a display font in the past though rarely use it as of late. Avant Garde making a notable revival recently in the music and arts world (love it). Have been using Fertigo Pro for a (semi) sans-serif alternative. Also loving Buffet Script & Mousse Script for a little curve!
    Thx again
    -a

  • Reggie

    What font manager would you recommend for windows?

  • detailcommunications

    My personal fav right now is Matrix by Zuzana Licko http://www.emigre.com/EF.php?fid=105

  • Poshmodern

    Extensis Suitcase Fusion 2 is great has CS4 plugs and float window to compare font with artwork before activation.

  • Dan

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  • Dan

    Excellent job..
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  • http://www.clippingimages.com shabnam

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  • http://www.fkfj.co.nr FKFJ

    *drools*
    I fell in love with Knockout after seeing it used on the MTV Video Awards 2009 – just the use of it in the nomination videos and I was HOOKED. Before this it was Din Engschrift because of its tall and slim looks, and just its official but casual look. Knockout – for the same reasons, but another thing that interested me was its American look – it just looks so American! Hard to explain, but yeah. I'm in love with a font…

    Georgia bold and italicised is another really nice font. Possibly the poor man's simplified version to Bodoni (bold and italicised) as well – amazing.

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  • http://www.cardsoftware.net Amanda Smit

    Thank you for sharing your favourite font collection, always good to get some good ideas!

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