The inspiration behind the FF Hydra family came from 19th and early 20th century French poster lettering. Silvio Napoleone found that the styles of this period combined whimsical, economic, and impact-bringing qualities. A typeface that incorporated these characteristics would be quite relevant for today’s design aesthetic.
Naploeone began sketching an extremely condensed sans serif, without any variation in stroke thickness. He experimented with the stroke connections, discovering organic forms which were both interesting and functional. The name “Hydra” is inspired by the snakelike shapes created when the various strokes in the letterforms join together. Hydras are fierce, multi-headed water serpents in Greek mythology that ravaged cattle herds and the general countryside. If one of its heads was cut off, two new heads appeared. The Hydra was eventually slain by Hercules during his second labor.
FF Hydra was designed to be extremely versatile, both in print and newer media. The Regular style provides impact with an economy of width, creating a unique overall impression. The Expanded version is suitable for longer blocks of text. Other elements of the FF Hydra design are the characteristic soft ink trap connections, oldstyle figures, and true italics.
FF Hydra Text is a sans serif family for text sizes that is a continuation of the FF Hydra family.
FF Hydra supports 101 different languages such as Spanish, English, Portuguese, German and French in Latin scripts. (Please note that not all languages are available for all formats.)