What standard fonts available for Adobe Indesign Cs6 Windows suitable for writing the text on the back of a set of greeting cards that display modern photographic abstract images. ( you can browse some images at http://www.secretdorsetphoto.com )


enter image description here I am trying to create cards of some of photographs. But I am not a designer and I am struggling to decide on a suitable font, currently I have picked Gautami.

I have had this problem before when generating websites, I am well aware that picking the wrong font can have a really detrimental effect on the finished product.

I have asked for a standard font partly because I do not want the hassle/expense of installing additional fonts but mainly because I don't want the company that is going to do the printing to have problems installing the font.

Edit Based on some of the suggestions I have a new version, note I didnt make it clear this is a greeting card and so it has front and back which isnt immediately apparent from the way I have done it, so Ive just uploaded the back

enter image description here

  • 1
    I'm sorry, what is your question? is stumped
    – Vincent
    Nov 16, 2015 at 17:13
  • 1
    @Vincent sorry the font is for greeting card - Ive added more information Nov 16, 2015 at 17:33
  • 2
    What is 'suitable' will, alas, be heavily opinion based.
    – DA01
    Nov 16, 2015 at 18:01
  • I'm just asking for a some options from people with more experience than I. Nov 16, 2015 at 18:19
  • 1
    ".. because I don't want the company that is going to do the printing to have problems installing the font" – erm, you should send them a PDF. Do ask them what kind of PDF before you do that. (And, conversely, if they want your original InDesign file, tell 'em an actual professional told you to that's bad practice.)
    – Jongware
    Nov 17, 2015 at 11:12

2 Answers 2


A critique

As it is, your text appears too prominent – it attracts attention. While in general not a bad thing, it is when the reader's focus should be on the artwork, not "distracted" by the accompanying text.

The text appears prominent because

  1. The font size is quite large.
  2. The font itself is quite dark.
  3. The text is closely spaced, so there are dense blocks of data.

In addition, a couple of minor points:

  1. The text is in black.
  2. The text uses lots of capitals.

You can try a different approach for each of these points, alone or in combination with others:

  1. A smaller font size,
  2. a lighter font cut,
  3. a larger line height ("leading"),
  4. a tint of black, or possibly an actual color,
  5. a font that has less prominent capitals; or, for that distinct sense of 'design', use as much lowercase as you can (which will make the capitalized phrases stand out more),
  6. Some additional tracking to space out the text.

An apology

Is it so 'orrible then? Well no :)

Things that you definitely got right are (1) using a sans serif font for a relatively distant, objective, informative, clean text, (2) an attractive global layout with all main elements centered and a repetition of the 'important' image, (3) lots of white space on the left hand side, to counteract the full page image on the right hand side.

A suggestion

There are not that many really really good fonts that come with your computer– wait, let me rephrase that. There are lots of actually very good fonts that come with your computer, but that is no reason not to look beyond those!

Here is my proposal for the text, using a smaller font, lots more spacing, a 60% shade of black for the text, and a free font: Droid Sans. Also I got rid of a few of the capitals. The text is spaced out using +20 tracking, as with its default this font looks a bit cramped to me.

Consider making the right hand side larger – make it so large it bleeds off the page: "dramatically", rather than having a boring standard white border.

Be careful picking a color for your text. It should not (again) distract too much so don't pick a glaringly bright color. In addition, a color that matches one particular illustration may not match another well (although you could counteract this with picking a specific color for each different image). In my proposal I chose a light tint of gray, hence neutral for most images.

dorset photography

  • Thanks Jongware that is really good advise. I didnt make it clear that it is a card and hence has back and front you cant see both at same time when folded. I thought myself the text looked a bit black and too large but never occurred to print as grey, i reduce the black to 71%. I have not tried the new font yet or changed spacing and capitals yet but I will give that a go Nov 17, 2015 at 16:04

Picking a font is really dependent off of the intended use of the art and the receipent(s).

For example you wouldn't use a hard sans-serif font like Arial for a get well soon card.

I would check out some top 10/20 font lists like this one to compare fonts with your artwork and pick a suitable one!

The key here is to match the mood with the softness or hardness of the font.

Bear in mind that these aren't exactly the "correct" terms to describe font characteristics but I'm using less technical terms.

  • Good general advice about picking font for intended use, however in this case its a general purpose card that could be used for any purpose I suppose people would buy it because they like the image and/or they want a memento of a holiday/short break to the area - Im trying to appeal to people who want a less cliched card of the area so I imagine the person who buys this would be most likely be younger/design orientated. I want to use a font available with indesign Nov 17, 2015 at 8:43

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.