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What Am I?

Updated: Apr 26, 2023

People questioning every aspect of their life often start with: what am I? While the question could easily and rightfully end there, additional words are added to compose new sentences:

What am I doing? What am I thinking? What am I good at? What am I passionate about? And what am I doing with my life?

As a graduating senior, I hear these questions whirling around my social circles. Like deer in headlights, many stare at this milestone, unsure of what their future holds and who they’ll be when that moment arrives.

Needing to delay adulthood and that reality as long as possible, I planned accordingly. After my undergraduate graduation, I will begin my Master of Science in Communication at Clark…yes, you read that right. I am semi-willingly staying to get my graduate degree, but that’s just because I have earned a 100% scholarship. And I like the words “free degree.”

With my summer in Luxembourg mapped out and graduate school in the fall, what am I asking myself?

Well, it’s so thoughtful of you to ask.

Outside of questioning what am I going to watch next, I ponder, what am I as a font? I ask myself this as I have recently finished an astounding amount of new tv shows. But, this new artistic angle of self-questioning is due to my graduate course, Visual Communication & Design.

In this course, I have learned how to use Adobe Photoshop.

5 year old Faith, and 21 year old Faith with Cher and aunt in Giant's Causeway

And as you can see, I have clearly mastered the program. In conjunction with my professor and countless youtube videos (ultimately distorting my wants and needs and ruining the algorithm), I learned how to use Adobe Illustrator.

Statistics of racial diversity amongst VPA professors, Hollywood Actors, and Directors

But you may have already noticed this as I have redesigned the website, implementing a new color palette, thematic icons, photoshopped images, and new typography, bringing me back to what am I as a font? Or to ruin the “what am I” pattern, what font am I?

Well, if you don’t already know, there are stylistic aspects to a font: serif, sans serif, slab serif, script font, and display fonts.

If you were raised right, or if you were raised behind the blue doors, you handed each and every typed assignment in Times New Roman, size 12: not Times, not size 11.5 (unless you were over the page count), only Times New Roman, size 12. And personally, that’s the way it should be.

But, unfortunately, this classic style is going out of style. With the rise of technology, all Times New Roman lovers are quickly losing ground on this prestige way of writing, as serif fonts like Times New Roman are “harder to read on screens than sans serifs.”

Apparently, the decorative strokes on the ends of each letter make it preferable to read on paper but harder to read on technology. And, since students submit material using malfunctioning software like Moodle, Schoology, and Canvas, it is deemed easier for educators to read sans serif fonts. Knowing this, I still refused to submit my homework for this class, or any, in such a style.

Serif fonts demand trust and authority. While we can all agree that a part of me inhabits these qualities, how I am viewed by society is rarely just up to me and my qualities. More bluntly, systemic racism will always file me under the Angry Black Women and Loud Latina stereotypes, both highlighting a theme of untrustworthiness.

Could I be a sans serif? Embodying sophistication, I wouldn’t mind being seen as such. But, to say it plainly, I just hate the style. While I am unsure of the science behind it, between my dyslexia, auditory processing disorder, history of concussions, and chronic illness, sans serif fonts make it hard to read either on screens or in print.

If you are just now realizing that the majority of Faith’s Takes features this sans serif font, you, dear reader, are most welcome. And to my professors reading my homework imprinted with Times New Roman on Canvas, sorry not sorry.

So I cannot be a font that I don’t like, as most of the time, I am actually quite fond of myself. This statement stands true for fonts slab serif and script, and are excluded from the running.

What other options are there?

Without the use of a Buzzfeed quiz, or any other type of internet quiz, aka after careful deliberation, I have decided I am a display font. Display fonts, like me, can be extremely playful, quirky, or very serious––depending on the situation. Display fonts are the bi-fontal font between serif and sans serif, which is even better.

Unfortunately, you cannot use display fonts to write papers or blog posts––it goes against the rule of visual communication and design. If I felt comfortable and artistically talented enough to break artistic law, this post would be in such a font. But, as I am unable to change the font in general, sans-serif it is.

Enough about me, what are you? Do you feel specifically tied to comic sans, like my mother? (Yes, she actually said this. And I am thinking of disowning her after such a shameful statement.) Are you too into slab serifs? The grumpy font my father proudly claims? Are you the frivolous script font like my younger sister? Or are you the display font that ends all display fonts, like my dear Abuelita?

"What am I?" in serif, sans serif, slab serif, script, and display font

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