Typography

Consistent use of typography is a simple way to align our visual identity. Fonts set a cadence for how communication is read and can do a lot to alleviate denseness on the most text-heavy pages.

Based on their clean lines, usability and compatibility with the university logo, Proxima Nova and Capita have been chosen to replace Univers and Minion as our official university fonts.

Both highly readable, Proxima Nova and Capita are diverse in weight and style, attractive when paired together, and — most conveniently — available as web fonts. External-facing communication materials should utilize one or both of these fonts.

To supplement our core typefaces, Snell Roundhand Script has been chosen as our script font. Snell Roundhand will be available for desktop only.

Fonts are licensed products and cannot be shared; licenses for both font packages, Proxima Nova and Capita, are available from UniPrint (uniprint.osu.edu or 614-292-2000) for a specially negotiated price of $105. Snell Roundhand Script is available separately for the price of $12.30 per license.

If you are responsible for internal or external marketing communications, talk with your local communications office about obtaining a license for Buckeye fonts. For most employees, the use of the default font Arial is recommended for daily use.

Do not share fonts. Licenses for our font packages are available from UniPrint (uniprint.osu.edu
or 614-292-2000) at specially negotiated prices.

Proxima Nova – Our sans-serif typeface

With its modern clarity, accommodating diversity, and welcoming approachability, Proxima Nova is a perfect typeface for conveying the attributes of Ohio State as well as our messages.

Proxima Nova was originally designed as Proxima Sans by Mark Simonson in 1994 and was redesigned completely in 2005. It is versatile in both text and display, and it reads particularly well on mobile devices and the Web.

Proxima Nova is extremely diverse, with 42 OpenType weights and styles. For consistency, we suggest limiting usage to the twelve shown above.

Proxima Nova Condensed

Proxima Nova does include a condensed version that can be used for forms, disclaimers and other “fine print” usages that a reader would expect to take more effort to read. Condensed should never be used for headlines or body copy, however. The tightness that makes it good for small spaces also reduces its legibility. If text isn’t fitting, edit the words instead of squeezing the letters.

Proxima Nova Condensed is not included as a web font.

Capita — Our serif typeface

A new-style serif font, Capita is warm and genteel. Its well-balanced proportions result in high readability while its beauty qualifies it as great display type as well.

The Capita family consists of 12 OpenType weights and styles. Designed by Dieter Hofrichter in 2013, Capita is clean, attractive and particularly well suited for long texts.

Miller – Our editorial typeface

As our brand evolves, so too must our creative toolkit. With the launch of the new Ohio State Alumni Magazine format, we’ve introduced Miller as our editorial typeface.

Designed by Matthew Carter, this serif typeface was released in 1997 through the Font Bureau. With roots in Scotch Roman design, it creates high levels of legibility in large blocks of text and is widely utilized in newsprint. It is optimized for small size and long texts which allows for more words per square inch than our current font options. These characteristics lead to opportunities for longer stories, bigger images and more white space to create eye-catching layouts.

This font should be used only in editorial instances made of long-form copy such as magazines, newsletters and print programs. 

Snell Roundhand — Our script typeface

When a script font is desired, the clean lines of Snell Roundhand is the preferred choice. Snell Roundhand was created by Matthew Carter for Linotype in 1966. It was based on the handwriting of Charles Snell, a writing master from the 1600s.

This connecting script is a great compliment to our primary fonts and makes a wonderful accent typeface as well. Though an easy to read script, it should be used with discretion and never for large bodies of text.

Snell Roundhand is well suited for use on invitations, announcements and certificates.

Snell Roundhand will not be available for web use.

Arial - Our default typeface

Arial is the preferred desktop font for business documents, email, PowerPoint presentations and other office needs.

When a serif font is absolutely necessary, Times New Roman should be used, but Arial remains the preferred default typeface.

Combining typefaces

In addition to creating tone, typefaces can be used together to create emphasis and a visual hierarchy that assists the reader with navigating your text. This can be achieved using fonts, weights, color and point size.

The combination of serif and sans serif fonts is a classic pairing, and Proxima Nova and Capita are eminently compatible. Using one for headers and the other for body copy is a reliable way to create visual interest without complicating things.

Do keep in mind, however, that every typeface variation — e.g., any change in font, color, weight, point size, etc. — adds a layer of emphasis, and too much emphasis can have the opposite effect. If everything is emphasized, nothing stands out.

When creating a type hierarchy, try varying attributes just enough to distinguish between levels. You’ll give yourself more options that way, and your end user will have a more enjoyable read.

Type as a graphic element

Typography adds tone to our text, and it can add impact and personality to a layout when used as a big and bold graphic element.

In addition to their utility, Proxima Nova, Capita and Snell Roundhand were chosen as our university fonts for their beautiful lines, curves, and angles. Use them to their full advantage. Take them beyond the usual parameters. Try them large. Abstract. See what happens.

Web fonts

The university fonts, Proxima Nova and Capita, are available as web fonts to provide consistent type styles across print and digital communications. Web fonts are "safe" to use on web sites without fear of defaulting to a less-savory alternative.

The default font for electronic communications is Arial.

Fonts are licensed products and cannot be shared. Usage of the web fonts, Proxima Nova and Capita, is included with purchase of the font package, available from UniPrint (uniprint.osu.edu or 614-292-2000) for a specially negotiated price of $105. Snell Roundhand Script is not available for web.

More information about web fonts is available in the Digital elements section

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