Type Specimen Poster – Research

For this project we have been asked to design an A3 type specimen poster in Adobe InDesign. This is a typographic poster that displays a typeface in its complete form, including, all letterforms, ligatures, numbers, glyphs and punctuation marks.


I was given the typeface Didot. I started to research the history of Didot. Is has a very extensive background and was one of the first modern typefaces of its time. Dating back to 1784, it was developed and created originally by Firmin Didot, part of the Didot family. The Didot family owned the most important print shop and font foundry in Paris. Pierre Didot, the printer, published ‘Editions du Louvre’ series with the typefaces of his brother (Firmin Didot). Firmin born 1764 in Paris had many talents, punch cutter, printer, publisher, author as well as type founder . He cut his first typefaces in 1783 and also reworked his fathers roman alphabets. The family printing company still exists today under the name Firmin Didot, Society Nouvelle. The Statuesque, clear forms of the Didot alphabet are representative of their time. They are known as ‘modern’ and are characterised by extreme vertical stresses and fine hairlines contrasted by bold main strokes. As shown in the picture above taken from my sketch book.

                  The picture above, shows the books that I used while researching Didot Typeface

In 1991 Adrian Frutiger developed the Didot font further and is a sensitive interpretation of the french Modern typeface. Linotype Didot is used in many book and magazine designs, as well as advertising. It is classic and elegant. http://www.eyemagazine.com/feature/article/reputations-adrian-frutiger – A feature on Adrain Fruitger taken from Eye magazine.

Didot is everywhere, on fashion magazine covers, like Vogue and Bazar, on billboards, and branded logos such as Hilton, Dior, CK, Boss, Yves Saint-Laurent, Giorgio Amani, Zara and Guess. https://fontsinuse.com/typefaces/4008/didot  This is blog that I found while researching. It shows Didot being used across a variety of products.

Now that I know the history and where Didot is mostly used, I started to look at different type specimen posters online.

https://www.behance.net/gallery/22748773/Didot-Font-Poster This link will take you to where I sourced my type specimen posters

Above are a four that I found. Each one has a very different layout and are effective in their own entity. I particularly like the bottom right poster, as it depicts the sense of what Didot being used for Magazine covers, such as Vogue. I also looked at typographic posters to get a sense of how I should think about laying out my own poster. Here are some example of a few that I looked at.

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Above are a few of my preliminary layout sketches that I have drawn for the Didot type specimen poster. My initial thoughts are to go with sketch number 2, to me it is the most eye-catching. However I am undecided, more sketches need to be done before I make a final decision.

After coming up with some more designs in my sketch book, I have decided on my final design ready to reproduce in Indesign





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