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Typography for Web Designers
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Shaping the modernist page layout


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Typography for Web Designers

with Laura Franz

Video: Shaping the modernist page layout

In this lesson, we'll be putting some space between the content and the edge of the page. You'll need the files biblio_sans_ page.html and biblio_sans_page.css from the Exercise folder. Open up the HTML file in the browser to see what we're working with. The page is set up and we've got our background image, but there is not enough space between the content and the edge of the page. This is a modernist page so we don't have to create a text frame, but it's still too tight for comfort.
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  1. 6m 18s
    1. Welcome
      1m 9s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 57s
    3. Things to consider before starting this course
      3m 12s
  2. 41m 3s
    1. Understanding how good typography promotes reading
      2m 9s
    2. Understanding legibility
      4m 41s
    3. Understanding how fonts convey meaning
      5m 19s
    4. Choosing web-safe fonts to convey meaning
      6m 13s
    5. Using font size, case, style, letter spacing, weight, and color to convey meaning
      6m 22s
    6. Choosing web fonts to convey meaning
      6m 23s
    7. Downloading web fonts
      4m 9s
    8. Applying web fonts in CSS with @font-face
      5m 47s
  3. 38m 0s
    1. Choosing a web-safe font for use in text
      4m 13s
    2. Applying the web-safe font to the text and the heading
      3m 4s
    3. Setting a class for the resource titles in the text
      3m 45s
    4. Choosing a second web-safe font for the heading
      2m 42s
    5. Applying the second font to the heading
      2m 16s
    6. Choosing a web font from the Google Font API for use in text
      5m 44s
    7. Adding and applying the Google Font API syntax
      4m 29s
    8. Choosing a second web font from the Google Font API for the heading
      2m 56s
    9. Adding and applying the second font to the heading
      4m 52s
    10. Analyzing the fonts on some professional sites
      3m 59s
  4. 55m 31s
    1. Understanding how we read
      4m 34s
    2. Finding and applying a good font size and line height
      4m 50s
    3. Finding and applying a good line length
      8m 6s
    4. Understanding ems
      6m 17s
    5. Using ems to set font size
      6m 9s
    6. Using ems to set line length
      3m 40s
    7. Understanding how color affects readability
      3m 58s
    8. Improving a color palette by improving contrast
      5m 39s
    9. Improving a color palette by reducing optical vibration
      4m 59s
    10. Analyzing text readability on the professional sites
      7m 19s
  5. 1h 11m
    1. Understanding how we "chunk" visual elements
      3m 59s
    2. Developing a system of hierarchy
      2m 17s
    3. Applying hierarchy in HTML and CSS
      7m 16s
    4. Developing a system to help chunk text for readers
      6m 1s
    5. Applying the system in the CSS
      4m 19s
    6. Changing an element by creating and applying a class
      5m 0s
    7. Using multiple columns to create hierarchy
      4m 12s
    8. Building a two-column system in HTML and CSS
      10m 56s
    9. Refining the horizontal space in a two-column layout
      6m 1s
    10. Adding rule lines to improve chunking
      5m 50s
    11. Adding emphasis within a heading
      4m 36s
    12. Analyzing the chunking on the professional sites
      11m 18s
  6. 17m 57s
    1. Understanding classic and modernist typographic pages
      7m 3s
    2. Understanding how to create rhythm and tension
      6m 0s
    3. Applying typography skills when making design decisions
      4m 54s
  7. 55m 47s
    1. Designing typographic links for the traditional page
      5m 54s
    2. Adding a list of links to the traditional page
      8m 44s
    3. Describing the link states in CSS
      6m 30s
    4. Returning links to their original "unvisited" style
      2m 38s
    5. Using different CSS for different kinds of links
      7m 28s
    6. Using CSS notation to organize syntax
      5m 34s
    7. Choosing a background color or image
      4m 0s
    8. Applying a repeating background image
      2m 58s
    9. Shaping the traditional page layout
      6m 38s
    10. Analyzing the traditional typographic elements on the professional sites
      5m 23s
  8. 43m 0s
    1. Designing typographic links for the modernist page
      6m 47s
    2. Making a list of links run across the page
      2m 14s
    3. Adding and removing space between the navigation links
      6m 50s
    4. Styling the inline links on the modernist page
      5m 33s
    5. Choosing a background color or image for the modernist bibliography
      4m 4s
    6. Applying a no-repeat background image
      4m 13s
    7. Shaping the modernist page layout
      6m 58s
    8. Analyzing the modernist typographic elements on the professional sites
      6m 21s
  9. 52m 53s
    1. Fixing quotation marks and apostrophes
      6m 59s
    2. Fixing dashes
      6m 33s
    3. Working with lining figures (numbers) and acronyms
      9m 28s
    4. Fixing characters that don't look right
      8m 19s
    5. Hanging punctuation
      2m 54s
    6. Applying typographic accents
      2m 36s
    7. Vertically centering text
      5m 18s
    8. Creating drop caps
      5m 59s
    9. Analyzing the typographic details on the professional sites
      4m 47s
  10. 3m 9s
    1. Additional resources
      3m 9s

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Typography for Web Designers
6h 25m Appropriate for all Jul 14, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Learn how to choose fonts for a web site and create beautiful, legible type. Author Laura Franz shares how to create designs that maximize readability (and keep visitors on the page) by paying attention to details in size, line-height, line length, alignment, color, vertical space, and more. Laura also demonstrates how to incorporate web fonts, style type with CSS, and pick fonts that work well together.

Topics include:
  • Understanding how good typography promotes reading
  • Choosing web-safe fonts
  • Applying web fonts in CSS with @font-face
  • Adding and applying the Google Fonts syntax
  • Finding and applying a good font size, line height, and line length
  • Improving a color palette by improving contrast and reducing optical vibration
  • Understanding how people mentally organize, or chunk, visual elements
  • Applying a system of hierarchy in HTML and CSS
  • Applying vertical spacing in CSS
  • Adding emphasis within a heading
  • Understanding classic and modernist typographic pages
  • Adding a list of links
  • Creating drop caps
  • Fixing quotation marks, apostrophes, and dashes
Subjects:
Typography Web Web Design Web Fonts Web Foundations
Software:
TextWrangler
Author:
Laura Franz

Shaping the modernist page layout

In this lesson, we'll be putting some space between the content and the edge of the page. You'll need the files biblio_sans_ page.html and biblio_sans_page.css from the Exercise folder. Open up the HTML file in the browser to see what we're working with. The page is set up and we've got our background image, but there is not enough space between the content and the edge of the page. This is a modernist page so we don't have to create a text frame, but it's still too tight for comfort.

Right now with the tight edges, the text looks like it's going to fall off the page and the yellow rule-line looks like it's cutting the page in half. Let's change that by adding in space around the content of the page, but first, we need to figure out how much space we want to add. We could go as high as 99em wide for the page, but that's too wide. We could use a width of 96em. That's a very popular width. There is even a grid system based on 960 pixels, which is 96em in our case, but it's still too wide for what our text needs.

The text feels lost and wimpy in so much space. Let's try making the page narrower. 76em looks good. I wouldn't go any narrower. The links across the top need the room. Now let's look at the margins. Currently, we have equal left and right margins, although they don't feel that way because the left column has right aligned text and a lot of open space. It looks pretty good, but we can still try other placements to see if it could be better. We can try shifting everything to the right to increase tension.

This feels too far over. The left side feels empty. Let's try moving it over to the left a little bit. This isn't bad. The vertical line is strong here and the page feels balanced. The left doesn't feel so empty. What if we shift it further to the left? This feels too centered, even though it's got a tighter left margin, probably because the right column, the one with all the content, is more central on the page. It's fine, but it lacks tension. This field is less centered and it might be the one.

The entire content is slightly left of center while the main text is slightly right of center. The margins are good, nothing is too equal. Nothing is too tight. Looking at this one makes me realize that the original centered version feels too far to the right. Again, it's not bad. it just felt too far to the right on the page. We've got the page looking the way we want it. So let's set the spacing in the CSS. In the CSS, look for the div ID main_container.

We're going to keep the width we've been using 60em and we're going to add padding on the left and right to add space. First, we'll do some padding-top. I'll actually just set that to 0 and then padding-right is 10em and padding-bottom is 4.8em. I got that measurement because it's 1 1/2 times the height of the navigation links at the top of the page. And padding-left is 6em.

Let's save this and review it in our browser, and refresh. And great! We've added space to the left and right of our content. It looks good, except the navbar isn't the same width as the white part of the page. Why not? Well, the navbar is in a nav container that is the same width as the main container. We just can't see it yet. It doesn't have a background color. Let me show you. Here is our nav_container. Let's add a background color to it.

We'll make it sort of gray color here six 9s, #999999. Let's save this and we can view it in our browser. We're going to keep the navbar narrower than the div that it's in. Why? Because text changes slightly between browsers. If we make the nav links fit perfectly in a div, they may work in one browser, but they can be narrower or wider in another browser, because text renders differently across browsers.

And if the links get too wide, the row of links would break inside the div. Here, I've created a version of this file with a slightly narrower nav container. You can see here that the div the nav container is in is narrower than the other one we were looking at, just a little bit of gray there in the background. It still works fine here in Firefox, but if I view it in Safari, the links break, because even though it's the exact same text that are at the exact same size and font, in Safari the text comes in slightly bigger and slightly looser, so all the text doesn't fit in the div and our navbar breaks.

So that's why we're going to keep the div that the navbar lives in a little bit wider than the actual navbar. Of course, we're now going to keep it with a gray background. Let's go in and change that. Our nav container should actually have the same color as the backgrounds of our links. So let's change that. It is #264c73, we can save it, and let's review that in our browser. Excellent! Now, you don't even know that it's in a different sized div.

There is a slight change here. We'll see a little bit of the blue on the outside when we hover over a link, but at least we know that they won't break and they won't break in Safari either. We're going to double-check that though. I can copy this URL up here in Firefox and then in Safari I can paste it, and it looks great in Safari, and it looks great in Firefox. All we have to do? Well, I'd just like to scroll down to the bottom and make sure that bottom margin is working, and it's pretty good. I like it. All right! So we're set and we're finished with a modernist bibliography.

We'll come back later in the course to finish up details like punctuation, but for the most part, it's done. We've really paid attention to the modernist elements in the layout. The architectural space, the hierarchy, the clean sans serif font, and the companion serif font. It's not too traditional looking. We've also tried to create rhythm intention by creating a focal point and a strong vertical line, and by not keeping everything too equal on the page. Great job!

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Q: Where can I learn more about graphic design?
A: Discover more about this topic by visiting graphic design on lynda.com.
 
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