Expressive Type

Expresso‘s front pages have a lot of words and colors on them, but they are incredibly simple to follow because of the typography chosen.  Ads not included, there are only two different font families used on the page:  a serif typeface used for things that would be considered news pieces and the nameplate and then a sans serif typeface is used for more lifestyle pieces, promos, and decks.  (This choice of typeface families and what they are used for actually runs throughout the entirety of the paper.)  Even though the typeface used for the nameplate and headlines contains a serif, it is not a gaudy serif that makes it look too formal.  Rather, the serif is there doing what it was meant to do-guide the reader’s eyes along and make it easier to read.  On other hand, the choice of the sans serif typeface for promo and refers looks modern, yet is still easy to read.

Another thing that is done well, in terms of typography, are the colors used.  Each issue’s lead story headline always appears in a red typeface.  This is the only red used on the page.  This makes the lead headline stand out and it is clear that this is what the editors wanted you to pay attention to.  When it comes to promos and refers, the colors used here tend to be more light-hearted and bright.  The colors match the typeface being used.

The color red is used here again to bring attention to part of the headline, however it is used in a more graphic way to make it interesting rather than to draw attention to its newsworthiness.  This infographic is not a hard news piece, rather it fits more into the lifestyle category (it is about what your car is made out of) and uses the sans serif typeface for its headline.  This typeface appears to be the same as the one used on the front page that looks more modern and fun, rather than serious.  All of the numbers, headlines, and sidebar uses the sans serif typeface.  This contributes to the overall feel of the piece.

This infographic has a much different feel to it compared to the previous one.  The topic is serious (wars and conflicts Portugal has been involved in since 1945) and the design mimics that.  All of the typeface used has a serif.  The main headline and the headline for each individual chart are in the serif typeface that looks and feels more professional, and less fun.  This goes with the overall tone of the piece, and seems to be a pattern that Expresso follows for its hard news pieces.  Another thing that is different about this piece, in comparison to the previous one, is the lack of color used.  All the type is in black–the headlines, captions, and body copy.  It is simple and clean.

Overall, Expresso follows definite patterns in typography when it comes to whether pieces are hard news or more lifestyle oriented.  This is beneficial to the reader because they are able to distinguish between types of stories, even if they realize it or not.  The pieces with a sans serif typeface are clearly much more lighthearted and those with a serif typeface are more traditional news stories.  The use of color also helps to guide the eye throughout the page.

joannapenalva