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ITC Officina® Serif

By ITC

Ole Schäfer
Erik Spiekermann
ITC
When ITC Officina was first released in 1990, as a paired family of serif and sans serif faces in two weights with italics, it was intended as a workhorse typeface for business correspondence. But the typeface proved popular in many more areas than correspondence. Erik Spiekermann, ITC Officina's designer: Once ITC Officina got picked up by the trendsetters to denote 'coolness,' it had lost its innocence. No pretending anymore that it only needed two weights for office correspondence. As a face used in magazines and advertising, it needed proper headline weights and one more weight in between the original Book and Bold." To add the new weights and small caps, Spiekermann collaborated with Ole Schaefer, director of typography and type design at MetaDesign. The extended ITC Officina family now includes Medium, Extra Bold, and Black weights with matching italics-all in both Sans and Serif -- as well as new small caps fonts for the original Book and Bold weights."

Erik Spiekermann first conceived of the ITC Officina™ typeface design in the early 1980s. His goal was to create a family of type that was ideally suited for office correspondence and business documentation. ITC Officina soon revealed, however, that it had capabilities far beyond its original intention.

The ITC Officina font clearly stood on its own as a highly legible, remarkably functional type style, Spiekermann’s ambitions for the design now extended beyond the office environment; he sought to develop a family of type suitable for a wide range of typographic applications.

The ITC Officina font is a big family. Both the Serif and Sans Serif versions are available in five weights, each with corresponding italics. These twenty styles make for an exceptionally versatile communication tool. Proportionally, the Officina font's design is slightly condensed to make it economical in its use of space. Counters are full and the serifs are strong enough to remain legible at small sizes – especially important when used on low-resolution output devices and lesser grades of paper stock.

In 2001 Spiekermann added a volume of display faces to the ITC Officina family. The ITC Officina Display faces are slightly heavier and fit a little snugger than the text versions. Punctuation marks and the dots over the ‘i’ and ‘j’ were made smaller. A series of dingbats was even created for the new designs. Many additional, more subtle, changes were also made to the original design – all with the goal of making the Officina Display font an excellent communicator at large sizes.

Serif
Slab Serif