Ardena is a modern sans-serif typeface family. While neutral and clear at first glance, it can be characterized as both pleasant and confident due to its open, rounded forms and vertical terminals.
It can be used in both a restrained and expressive way. The thinner and thicker weights are particularly suitable for strong headlines, while the middle weights can be used for typographic challenges and body text. Completed with an extensive character collection, it becomes a real workhorse. A versatile allrounder that is up to all challenges – for Corporate Identity, Editorial, Branding, Orientation and Guidance systems and much more.
The Ardena family has a total of 20 styles, from thin to heavy with matching italics. With over 1064 characters, it covers over 200 Latin-based languages. It has an extended set of currency symbols and a whole range of Open Type Features. There are alternative characters as stylistic sets, small caps, automatic fractions – just to name a few.
Arrows and numbers:
In particular, the extensive range of arrows and numbers should be highlighted, which are perfectly suited for use in orientation and guidance systems. Thanks to Open Type Features and an easy system, the various designs of arrows and numbers can also be simply “written” without first having to select them in a glyph palette.
The principle is easily explained: If a number is placed in round or square brackets, it will automatically be displayed in an outlined circle or square. If you add a period to the number, it is displayed in a full circle or square. The same principle also applies to the arrows. The arrows themselves are combinations of greater/less symbols with the various slashes or hyphens.
Ardena can be tested with the free “Medium” style and is available at a 60% reduced price at Myfonts and Fontspring until 19.03.2021.
After the high-contrast serif Spitzkant, I needed the absolute contrast again for the following typeface project. In general, it should be a low-contrast sans serif. Neutral and versatile. One of which there are already thousands, but I simply wanted to draw my own interpretation. One that can be used for all purposes and is well constructed. That was my primary motivation for Ardena.
So I started with the first sketches and the first questions quickly came up. Even neutral sans serifs can differ significantly in character. How to finish the terminals – vertically, diagonally or horizontally? Geometric or humanistic proportions, stroke width contrast, soft or tapered curves – all characteristics that can develop their very own dynamics. Thus, not every sans serif is the same as another, as is generally claimed. In terms of character, Ardena should appear pleasant and confident at the same time. Among others, I expected this from open, rounded forms and vertical endings.
As neutral fonts are also often used for orientation and guidance systems due to their clear legibility, I intended to supply the designers with something more than just the classic numbers and arrows. So I drew circled and squared numbers and arrows, positive and negative. Since these should not have to be searched for in glyph palettes, I developed a system of how these characters can be easily “written” thanks to Open Type Features. A helpful tool and an easy way for users to find the appropriate characters. Only the standard ligatures have to be activated, which is the default in the most common graphics programs, such as Adobe Cloud, anyway.
To make a font usable for all purposes, it must of course be extended accordingly. Extensive language support, many currency characters, alternative characters, small caps and other features were added accordingly. Even the much underrated Interrobang found its place. As a result, the number of characters quickly grew to over 1000. Also an italic was drawn. So Ardena grew to a well-rounded and very extensive family that can be used for many purposes.
Julien Fincker lives and works in Stuttgart, Germany. After graduating as a Communications and Graphic Designer, he worked for influential agencies and companies, such as Grafisches Atelier Stankowski + Duschek. Today he works as an Art Director at Sieber & Wolf Werbeagentur. Freelance and part-time, he also attaches great importance to multidisciplinary work – especially type design.