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Scribus => Beginner Talk => Topic started by: clansman on June 13, 2014, 11:12:25 am

Title: font
Post by: clansman on June 13, 2014, 11:12:25 am
Maybe this question is not about scribus, but I hope you'll help me anyway.

Which is the default font size for the newspaper (or some kind of magazine) and how they can go under it??
Because I am limited to a small number of pages, but have so much to put in them. Despite that, the readability is on the first place.
Title: Re: font
Post by: GarryP on June 13, 2014, 02:57:49 pm
Welcome to the forum clansman.

Each newspaper and magazine will have its own standards for fonts - amongst other things - and the choice will depend on the in-house style but the most usual font size for body text in mass-market printed material is between 10 and 12 points. Anything smaller than 10 points gets hard to read for many people and anything bigger than 12 makes it start to look - in my opinion - like a child's reading primer. (Some "stylish" publications like to mess around with very small and large font sizes to make an impact but that's a different issue.)

I would suggest that you first set-up a character style for your body text, then apply that style to a paragraph style, then apply that paragraph style to your body text. (It's easier than it sounds.) Then you can try various font sizes by simply changing the size of the base character style font size. Experimenting will probably show you what looks best.

Try making some test prints of a single page with different font sizes and asking some of your potential readers what they think about which size they find easiest to read. You're creating it for people to read so anything unreadable will be pointless no matter the content.

Here are some links for further reading  - on various subjects - that might come in handy:

I hope this helps,

Title: Re: font
Post by: Nermander on June 13, 2014, 03:36:56 pm
It also depends on the individual font, some fonts look bigger in a certain size than others. One reason is the so called x-height of the font.

So take a sample text, set it in different fonts and sized, print and the look at how it "feels", how much space it occupies etc.

Title: Re: font
Post by: GarryP on June 13, 2014, 04:55:27 pm
Nermander makes a very good point (pardon the pun) about different fonts being different sizes at the same point-size.

You'll also need to take into account the thickness of the characters. "Thin" fonts will take up less space but they can be difficult to read for some people when parts of the characters are too close to each other (such as the verticals of an "m"). And "fat" fonts can be difficult to read as body text full stop.

And, one other thing I forgot to mention is that how you get your document printed makes a big difference too.

For instance, text that has capitals only 3mm high might look great and be easy to read when it's been printed on glossy paper on a professional machine but it might be very difficult to read when printed on a much-lower-resolution home/office printer.

Your best bet is to experiment.

Sometimes it's better to leave out some information than try and cram everything onto a page that becomes a chore to read because the text is so dense.

A good idea would be to look at various newspapers and see how they do things.

They've been honing their designs for decades, if not centuries (in the UK "The Times" has been printed since 1785), and they're very conscious about keeping the number of pages to a minimum.

For example, "The Sun" in the UK has a daily circulation of just over 2 million. So, if you're printing 2 million copies a day, losing one sheet - 4 pages - per edition saves you from printing nearly 2 million sheets a day. It all adds up!

P.S. Have a look at this Times front page from 1788 to see an example of what dense text looks like.
Title: Re: font
Post by: clansman on June 14, 2014, 09:48:49 pm
Thanks guys, you are amazing!