Free fonts are amongst the most popular downloads for entry level and professional graphic designers and typographers. They can provide a way for designers to express themselves uniquely without having to create a new font themselves or spend a lot of money purchasing a high priced professionally designed font for use only once or twice.
Aside from downloadable free fonts, there are numerous fonts that are available by default on all modern computers. Microsoft bundles a set of commonly used fonts with their Windows operating systems, as does Apple with OS X and many of the purveyors of Linux distros.
However, for more unique fonts, downloadable is the only way to go. Some of the most popular sites for free downloadable fonts include the following:
1001 Free Fonts, a site that offers far more than 1001 fonts, is currently one of the most popular sites for people looking to download free fonts. They offer fonts for both Windows and Mac OS X operating systems.
Dafont, a site that has grown in the past few years is now one of the largest destinations for free fonts. They seem to update more quickly than other sites, offer comments for each of their fonts, and they offer fonts for both Windows and Mac OS X operating systems.
Urbanfonts, a site that has a distinctly Web 2.0 style design and offers both free and commercial fonts (for a fee). Like 1001 Free Fonts and Dafont, Urbanfonts offers free fonts for both the Windows and the Mac OS X operating systems.
Are Free Fonts Worth the Download?
There are two distinct camps when it comes to free fonts. On one hand, many professional graphic designers believe that the only fonts worth downloading are those that are designed by professionals or those which have been crafted for a particular project.
However, for many entry level graphic designers and amateur typographers, free fonts can be a great way to learn about what makes a good font and can provide a number of impressive accents to their work.
The main problem with so many free fonts, though, is that they are modeled after fonts that have been engrained into the populace’s mind, making them useless for most semi-professional projects and all professional projects.