A study in contrasts
The ITC Chino typeface family is a study in contrasts: twelve family members ranging from fanciful, script-like display designs, to typefaces with a decidedly judicious demeanor well-suited for text composition. Designers Hannes von Döhren and Livius Dietzel collaborated on the entire family, and the result is lighthearted and uncomplicated - with a bit of urban sophistication.
Emotional but with a big city flavor"
Von Döhren and Dietzel live and work in Berlin. They wanted ITC Chino to reflect their environment, but with a definite organic quality. "We sought to make Chino emotional and have a big city flavor at the same time,"says von Döhren. "Our challenge was to balance these divergent qualities throughout the designs." He adds, "We combined straight stems with soft curves to give a feeling of thoughtful clarity blended with playfulness."
Friendly but focused
ITC Chino Display is friendly but focused, intended for setting few words in large sizes. Its two weights of Thin and Ultra are good-natured typefaces made of soft curves, contrasting straight vertical strokes and playfully structured terminals. The Thin is a chic monoline melding of script and sans serif character traits while the Ultra is a more whimsical - and more substantial - interpretation of this theme. Seemingly stylistic opposites, both designs serve as perfect complements to the text typefaces of ITC Chino.
A typeface with a big typographical palette
The text side of the family contains five weights of roman, each with an italic companion. Ranging from Light to Black, ITC Chino provides a rich typographic palette. Slightly condensed character shapes and squared-off transition strokes replace the soft full curves of the display designs. While the lowercase benefits from a two-storied "a" and bowl-and-loop "g" as aids to legibility, and the playful aspects of the display design are incorporated as soft background melodies, von Döhren and Dietzel drew ITC Chino with simplicity as their design mantra. "We drew the text faces from scratch," says Dietzel, "minimizing the personality of the display designs to create optimal readability.""