Sumner Stone’s Magma™ II typeface can be considered a sans serif “legibility” design. Its individual letterforms and the typeface's overall proportions make Magma II highly legible at text sizes – both on screen and in print.
History of the Typeface
Sumner Stone designed his first sans serif typeface family, the eponymous ITC Stone® Sans suite of faces, in 1988. He comments, “I created ITC Stone Sans early in the era of typography on the personal computer. Since then, technology has advanced, particularly regarding the resolution of screens and output devices in general. I felt I could develop a new design which would include more subtle features.”
Stone first drew Magma with pencil so his hand could capture the organic details he envisioned. He then developed the design on screen, with an attentive eye to the Magma family’s graceful performance in a variety of environments.
Prior to licensing his entire type library to Monotype, Stone decided that the Magma family would benefit from a few additional refinements, including an extended character set that supports most Central European and many Eastern European languages. The Magma II design is the result of Stone’s revisions and enhancements to his original typeface.
About the Designer
Stone first became interested in letterforms as a student at Reed College in Oregon. He was attracted to the lettering arts, but continued his education along more conservative lines. However, he took a course with eminent calligrapher Lloyd Reynolds, who showed the class a film made for Hallmark Cards about Hermann Zapf. In addition to learning about the incredibly talented Mr. Zapf, Stone discovered that there were actual paying jobs for doing what he had come to love – draw letters. Hallmark hired Stone in 1969, upon his graduation from Reed with a degree in sociology. (He subsequently earned an M.A. in mathematics.)
Stone’s entire career has been devoted to the typographic arts. He has directed type development at three different companies: Autologic in California, Camex in Boston, and Adobe Systems in the Silicon Valley – where he conceived and implemented Adobe¹s typographic program, including the Adobe Originals. He currently teaches type design at Cooper Union in New York and is the principal of Stone Type Foundry in Northern California.
Sumner Stone is naturally and academically inclined toward introspection. He is not only thoughtful, but also exceptionally logical, in his approach to issues of design. He experiments, investing a great deal of time in trial and error, ultimately reaching his design decisions after careful contemplation. Few designers have Stone's twin talents of artistic sensibilities and logic, exactly the attributes conducive to creating a family such as Magma.
Stone’s refinements for the Magma II family range from subtly improving the design to creating a suite of alternate characters. To compensate for the tendency for character strokes to appear tapered when digitally imaged, Stone slightly widened the vertical stems in Magma II at the ends of the strokes. The design’s legibility also benefits from a substantial lowercase x-height, open counters and easily recognizable characters such as the two-story a and bowl-and-loop g. There are also alternate one-story forms for lower case a and g. These two characters are helpful when setting very small sizes and offer variety when setting display typography. In addition, Stone also drew an alternate l with a curved foot and a capital I with slab serifs to distinguish it from the lowercase l and the figure 1.
The Magma family is extremely nimble. It is effective for setting both traditional and mobile versions of books, periodicals and advertising copy. Magma II is also well-suited for even the most extensive branding applications, in addition to games, way finding, signage, exhibit design, Info graphics, brochures and catalogs.
The Magma II suite of typefaces is available in OpenType® Pro and Web fonts formats, allowing users to take advantage of OpenType’s capabilities, including automatic insertion of the full range of additional glyphs Stone has designed. The Magma II fonts also have an extended character set supporting most Central European and many Eastern European languages.
Licenses for desktop fonts
A typical desktop font EULA will allow you to install the font on your computer for use with authoring tools including word processors, design tools and other applications that permit font selection. Fonts can also be used for creation of print documents, static images (JPEG, TIFF, PNG) and logos. The cost of a desktop font license is determined by the number of workstations on which the font is to be used.View the desktop EULA for this family
Licenses for Fonts.com Web Fonts subscriptions
The Fonts.com Web Fonts license provides access to a selection of fonts for use on websites for use with CSS@font-face. Font delivery from our global network is available through all subscriptions – even our free plan. Some plans include the option to self-host, access to desktop fonts, and use of our FontExplorer X font manager and Typecast design application. The price of a plan is determined by its pageview allowance and other features included.View the Fonts.com Web Fonts subscription license agreement
Licenses for mobile apps
A mobile app license permits the embedding of the font into the iOS, Android or Windows RT mobile platforms. Licenses are platform-specific meaning a separate license is required for each platform the font is embedded into. Licenses remain valid for the total operating life of the app and a new license is not required to cover free updates to the app.Learn more about licenses for mobile apps
Licenses for electronic publications (eBooks)
An electronic publication license can be used for the embedding of fonts into electronic documents including e-books, e-magazines and e-newspapers. A license covers only a single title but is valid for the full operating life of that title. Every issue of an e-magazine, e-newspaper or other form of e-periodical is considered a separate, new publication. Format variations do not count as separate publications. If a publication is updated and distributed to existing users, a new license is not required. However, updated versions issued to new customers are defined as new publications and require a separate license.Learn more about licenses for eBooks
Server licenses authorize the installation of a font on a server that is accessed by remote users or website visitors. These licenses are commonly used by Web-based businesses providing goods that are personalized by its users such as business cards, images with captions and personalized merchandise. Users are not allowed to download the font file and the font may not be used outside the server environment. The font may not be employed for a software as a service (SaaS) application in which the service is the actual product and not the means of providing the product. Server licenses cover a set number of CPU cores on production servers (development servers are not counted) on which the font is installed. The license is valid for 1 year.Learn more about server licenses