Helvetica Hero Shot

Generally I’m not too keen on showing off photographs of myself. But back in March, while we were both at South by Southwest, Naz Hamid took a picture of me that I really like. It combines a few of my favorite memes: super-heroes, Helvetica and, well, me. And it has just enough kitsch value to present some modest appeal to readers here, I think, so I’m posting it.

Khoi Wears Helvetica Tee by Lamosca

The tee-shirt is from Lamosca, a terrific and prolific design studio in Barcelona, and it was brought back from Spain as a gift from my friend and colleague Pau Santesmasses.

Aside from my ugly mug, isn’t it a beautiful photo? There’s something intangibly lustrous about black and white; compare it to the color version and you’ll see that that the monochrome palette adds a layer of mystery to the whole image. Of course, take my advocacy of black and white with a grain of salt; I’m a little biased, after all.

Of course, the color space means nothing without an artist behind the lens. Credit goes to Naz’s formidable camera skills; you can see the other photographs from this series here. And if that’s not enough to convince you he’s got an uncommonly perceptive photographic eye, you can should take a look at the photo project that he and his fiancée, Jen Schuetz have over at The Busy Life. Beautiful stuff, and you don’t have to look at my face at all.

  1. I saw this photo of you back after SXSW and have been trying to find the t-shirt ever since. Great photo, awesome tee. Now that you point me to it, it’s sold out. You did that on purpose, didn’t you?! 🙂

  2. The b&w has a level of grit to it that the colour version doesn’t. And the starkness on the shirt comes across much more bold than it does in the colour version. Nice shot all ’round. 🙂

  3. Hey, if you’ve got a photo of yourself that is that awesome, you should definitely flaunt it. And I think the B&W version works so well because the text is just so much brighter than the rest of the photo – it really jumps out.

  4. I must have missed why you are so obsessed with this one font. It’s okay, it is a good font and all. I see it everywhere so it in no way needs you to promote it. There are so many fonts why do you champion such a common one?

  5. Stephen Cole: On Upcoming, we tried using Helvetica before Arial in our CSS for a time, but the rare Windows users with Helvetica installed looked awful because of Microsoft’s font rendering, so we switched it back.

  6. Stephen: the answer is just as Andy describes. Windows renders Helvetica very poorly at the text sizes I’m using. I had to make the unfortunate decision to use Arial so as not to punish those Windows users with taste and savvy enough to install Helvetica. It seemed like the right thing to do, in spite of my general distaste for Arial.

  7. Helvetica costs my shirt. No way I’ll be able to get that font on my PC in a while. Meanwhile, Arial came bundled with Windows on this laptop.

    I wish Helvetica became free, or at least made into the core web fonts in one way or another.

Thank you! Your remarks have been sent to Khoi.