• Cindy Cheung

Anatomy of a Typeface

Typog­ra­phy ALWAYS matters. Typography refers to type ~ The art and craft of setting and using type.


The image below is the basic Anatomy of a Typeface. Did you know this?

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  • Arm – A horizontal stroke not connected on one or both ends.

  • Ascender – An upward vertical stroke found on lowercase letters that extends above the typeface’s x-height.

  • Baseline – The invisible line where letters sit.

  • Bowl – A curved stroke that encloses a letter’s counter.

  • Counter – Fully or partially enclosed space within a letter.

  • Crossbar – A horizontal stroke.

  • Descender – A downward vertical stroke found on lowercase letters that extends below the baseline.

  • Leading – the vertical spacing between lines of type.

  • Serif – “Feet” or non-structural details at the ends of some strokes.

  • Stem – Primary vertical stroke.

  • Tail – A descending stroke, often decorative.

  • Tracking – Spacing between groups of letters.

As a graphic designer typefaces are my best buddies. Using my typography skills (form, weight, selecting suitable fonts for headlines and body, etc.) to create harmonious and readable artwork. ⁠Whether it’s to sell a product online, to instruct and inform customers via print; typography’s impact on the overall design can’t be stressed enough. By keeping aesthetics and functionality of the typeface in mind, for instance, web pages can be designed to draw in your customer to read your content.


In brand identity design, it's important to create visual consistency across all platforms. In website design, this looks like using consistent heading and body fonts throughout the site.


Typography design in branding is a huuuuuuuuge topic, one which I could talk to you all day about but, if you’re in need help with your branding or unclear about your brand direction, feel free to send me an email or drop me a DM on Instagram 👉 @cindycheung.designer.



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