Category Archives: 8 Styles



View the web font spec­i­men sheet.

A sans serif open license font fam­ily, funded by Canon­i­cal and imple­mented by Dal­ton Maag.

Ubuntu has some quirky ele­ments, such as the cor­ners cre­ated where shoul­ders meet stems on the let­ters a, r, n, m, h, p, q, and u. The quirks don’t under­mine the over­all tex­ture, rhythm, or read­abil­ity of the font, but it does give text a slightly “futur­is­tic” feel which may or may not be appro­pri­ate for a project.

Even with the “futur­is­tic” feel­ing, I cat­e­go­rize Ubuntu as a human­ist sans because it has gen­er­ous aper­tures, bowls with implied stress (on the b, d, q, p), a curved foot on the low­er­case l, and a rel­a­tively human­ist italic.

Ubuntu’s x-height is slightly smaller than Ver­dana, yet holds up very nicely at smaller sizes due to gen­er­ous aper­tures and bowls. The bold weight is a bit heavy for my taste, though it is still leg­i­ble on screen. While a semi-bold is avail­able, it is not heavy enough to cre­ate a good con­trast to the reg­u­lar weight.

Ubuntu comes in 8 styles. I’ve tested the usual 4 plus the semi-bold, and they hold up beau­ti­fully cross browser. The whole fam­ily is avail­able on both Google Web Fonts and Type­kit.

Filed under 8 Styles, Google Fonts, Humanist Sans Serif, TypeKit |

Minion Pro


View the web font spec­i­men sheet.

An old style font by Robert Slim­bach, Min­ion Pro was orig­i­nally designed for print. It is part of the Adobe Orig­i­nals series.

Min­ion Pro feels “old” and pen-formed. It has a smaller x-height than Geor­gia, small closed coun­ters on the let­ters a and e, and rel­a­tively small aper­tures. Thus it needs to be set larger to retain read­abil­ity. Min­ion Pro is my favorite print font, and I didn’t expect it to work so well on screen (I usu­ally pre­fer web fonts with a larger x-height and aper­ture). I was pleas­antly surprised.

Min­ion Pro comes in 8 styles, includ­ing a beau­ti­ful semi-bold, which cre­ates hier­ar­chy with­out get­ting too heavy on screen. Even though it was orig­i­nally designed for print, Min­ion Pro is well hinted and tests well across browsers. It gets a lit­tle light on Fire­fox, Chrome, and Opera on Win­dows XP, but is still leg­i­ble if set at a gen­er­ous size. The whole fam­ily is avail­able on Type­kit.

Filed under 8 Styles, Old Style (Serif), TypeKit |

DejaVu Serif


View the web font spec­i­men sheet.

deja vu serif exampleA slab serif font by Tavmjong Bah, based on the Vera fonts. Unlike tra­di­tional slab serif fonts, DejaVu has con­trast between thick and thin strokes. The bowls are slightly square, and the large x-height means it remains read­able at smaller sizes.

DejaVu tests well across browsers, though there are some let­terspac­ing issues in Safari on Win­dows XP.

The DejaVu Serif fam­ily con­sists of 8 fonts (var­i­ous weights and styles). All are avail­able for free down­load at

Filed under 8 Styles, FontSquirrel, Slab Serif |

Calluna Regular


View the web font spec­i­men sheet.

A font that almost made it. A Venet­ian serif font by Jos Buiv­enga (, Cal­luna has a smaller x-height than Geor­gia, and works best at a gen­er­ous font-size. Cal­luna feels like an “old” font; it has pen-formed ser­ifs and ter­mi­nals. The ris­ing cross­bar of the low­er­case e is rem­i­nis­cent of early Renais­sance (Venetian/Humanist) letterforms.

calluna exampleUnfor­tu­nately, the font does not hold up across browsers. On Win­dows (XP, 7, Vista) the strokes on the let­ter­forms get very light (thin). The pen-formed head ser­ifs on let­ters such as h, b, d, u, and so on become too promi­nent, and the ris­ing cross­bar on the e becomes jagged and breaks.

The over­all struc­ture, spac­ing, and sys­tem of the font is beau­ti­ful. I had to include it in my col­lec­tion any­way. If you are cre­at­ing a site pri­mar­ily for mac users, Cal­luna will serve you well.

The Cal­luna fam­ily con­sists of 8 fonts (styles, weights). Cal­luna Reg­u­lar is avail­able for free down­load at fontspring. The full fam­ily is avail­able for license at fontspring and for font-linking via type­kit.

Filed under 8 Styles, Fonts That Almost Made It, FontSpring, TypeKit, Venetian (Serif) |