Gill Sans 1

There’s been a huge resurgence lately of the use of the Gill Sans typeface. It’s not clear why, but I see it in print everywhere these days — on posters, in brochures, and within reports. Unlike its most recent flare-up in the mid-90s, the current use of Gill Sans is rather spare and seems to accompany other slab serif typefaces like Bookman.
Here are some suppositions as to why Gill Sans is being used by designers yet again:
1. It’s a quick fix because it reads well for large amounts of set type and there is an assumption around that it hasn’t been seen in a while.
2. It’s a reaction to the sheer quantity of print design currently using Helvetica, which is essentially a refined version of Gill Sans.
3. As a supposedly “humanist” typeface, it’s legibility and friendliness is not off-putting to clients, which are in short supply and request nice, easy solutions.
4. It unwittingly harbors the start of a new economic depression as the Gill Sans’ original release, by Eric Gill around 1929, harbors remnants of the start of the Great Depression.
5. The lower-case “g” is nice.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *