Saturday, July 7, 2012

Kerning with Keillor

If you're in the area and you haven't visited the new location of Garrison Keillor's Common Good Books, it's definitely worth a visit. It's next to Macalester College in a light, bright space that's full of serious literature, opinionated current events, food politics, and a nice selection of YA.

I was taught to begin criticism with the positive, so now here is my teeny-tiny bit of the negative: The section signs have some groaningly bad kerning.

TRAVEL section sign with huge space between the A and V so it looks like TRA VEL
I thought at first they might have been created using letterpress, which would explain but not excuse the big gap between the V and A, but check out that RA overlap -- there's no way you could get that with letterpress.

POP CULTURE section sign with large space between the L and T
I think they may have been done with rubber stamps.

As XKCD put it,

XKCD cartoon with caption If you really hate someone, teach them to recognize bad kerning

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