New Software and a Font Fixation

Very soon we will be changing our media presentation software at State College E-Free Church.  The SCEFC worship leaders are responsible for setting up the slides containing the song lyrics, so this change effects me. I’ve downloaded a demo of the new program, ProPresenter 4, and I’ve started to develop my slides. ProPresenter looks great.

I like structure as much as anyone (ok, more than most). This means I must develop a consistent template for the songs I use. Elements include the layout (of titles, authors, copyrights), justification of text, font, and font size. One of the great things about ProPresenter is that the text is separate from the background graphics. You can set up your slides, then apply whatever background you choose to all the slides (in our previous program backgrounds had to be applied to all the songs individually).

The editor in ProPresenter 4.

One of the things that I had to decide was what font would become my standard. Last night I looked at many options. A list of about ten finalists emerged, but then another font caught my eye and rendered all the finalists losers. That font was Garamond.

It jumped from the monitor, giving me a moment of clear decisiveness. I will use Garamond as my main font. No question remains in my mind. No other font vies for my attention. I am committed to Garamond.

So today I began to wonder: why did Garamond grab my attention last night? Why was I able to discount all other fonts after seeing it, when I had been torn between various options moments before? What makes a font beautiful?

I’m not sure I can answer all those questions, but I did make a discovery that shed some light on the issue. Garamond is the font used in the wonderful books of Dr Seuss. Ah, now it’s all making sense. My many hours reading this typeface have acquainted me with it, have established a positive connotation, so upon seeing the font I associate it with good things. Plus it has the perfect blend of sophistication and class balanced with lightness. Like George Clooney on the December 2006 cover of Esquire or Grace Kelly on the April 11, 1955 cover of LIFE. Yes, I just compared a font to two thespians.

If you attend SCEFC be prepared for Garamond. I’m still working on my background graphics, right now I’m learning toward continuing using a macro shot of a leaf like I have been using for the past year and a half (the leaf changes to reflect the current season: starts light green in the spring, chlorophyll is added for a darker green in the summer, the fall is a brilliant orange-red, then it becomes dried and brown for the winter). I have no idea if anyone has detected the changing leaf or not.

Any opinions out there on what makes a good background for song lyrics? My preference is something subtle that remains constant throughout the song set. I’m partial to dark backgrounds with light text. I haven’t ruled out leaving the background black.

If I ever get a dog I think I will name it Garamond.

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2 Comments

Filed under General

2 responses to “New Software and a Font Fixation

  1. Olivia

    I love the addition of the beard to your cartoon Ben!

  2. Perhaps I will also choose Garamond to add an additional measure of structure and solidarity to worship at SCEFC.

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