Mili's font

milikuo's picture

Hello everyone,
This is my typeface. I imitated the Chinese brush, and the final type was done by illustrator. I will be appreciated a lot if anyone could give me suggestion. Thanks!


alltype.pdf (1651.3 k)

William Berkson's picture

The problem with brush fonts is that some of the fundamentals of the Roman font come from the broad pen held at a 30 degree angle. Thus it is easy for something done by Chinese brush to look 'wrong'. For example, in your X and Y, the top-left to bottom-right diagonal should be heavy and the top-right to bottom-left should be thin. You have it reversed.

That being said, some brush display lettering looks great. You can see a master of brush Roman and italic lettering in Jill Bell's work.

The recent movie title for 'Sin City' is also great.

It does seem to work better for lettering than type. Also I don't know how much of this work is done with a broad brush, which is more like the pen.

I think you have quite a bit of work to go to figure out how to apply the brush well to Roman fonts, but it should be a fun journey!

ebensorkin's picture

I don't know if I agree with William completely.

Obviously there is a long western writtten tradition & the traditions are there for very good reasons. On the other hand there has been a really limited amount of work done in chinese brush on western letterforms. The Chinese brush is really versatile and has produced many many styles of writing both formal & running hand/grass writing. I can't think that making beautiful western letterforms is something it *cannot* do. And when it does, the forms may not conform to the established 30 degree angle sense of beauty. Then again, maybe they will. My view is that it is too early to have a good idea about it.

Expecting a good result after a small amount of time would be silly. Most of the work I have seen so far has been poor to maybe okay. Nothing great. Just experiments.

I think it's a worth while project to look for ways to make western letters using a chinese technique and hybrid techniques.

How are you holding your brush?

I would advise you to try it over & over but in a delibertate way until you find what you are looking for.

As for the letters you already have I think that the best ones interpret the idea of western forms with tradtional eastern construction/brush technique.

The capital B begins with a vertical Bone & then runs. It has structure & then a flourish. I think it's pretty good. The D,P & R too.The E & F are weak. KLMN too. The B would make a good piece of chinese writing - the E & F would not. Do you see why? Why not make a curving E like the curves in the B but reversed? Do you know what unical forms are? Look at those too & not just roman shapes. The H & J are a good start too. They need more work & it might be good to kook for other ways of doing them but they are a good solid start.

You may also want to look at Jill's work just for ideas for the construction of letterforms in brush or to consider a new direction as William suggested.

Have you seen this work?

I have also seen the work of a Jpanese artist whose writing was in western characters & numbers but who used a vertical running style. I am sad I cannot remember his name because the work was very inventive & would probably be useful!

Good luck!

William Berkson's picture

>to consider a new direction

I didn't mean to imply that you just have to scrap what you have done. It is a good starting point, but there is so much variety in treatment of the current characters - and some are weaker than others - that there is yet a lot of work to do. For example, there is the issue of consistency of weight. The top to bottom arm on the K, for example, is much too heavy compared to the rest, as well as 'wrong' from the pen point of view.

I don't think that you have to follow 'pen' rules to make a good face. But you do have to create your own 'rules' that have internal consistency and visually work for viewers accustomed to reading Roman letters. I agree with Eben that this is a challenging and worthwhle undertaking. Good luck!

ebensorkin's picture

Sorry if I sounded like I was slighting what you said Wiiliam! I think the suggestions you made before & have just made are completely solid.

milikuo's picture

Oh, thank you for your suggestions! I do think there is something wrong with my font after I had constructed them all, but I couldn't tell what's wrong. I'm very thankful to William, because now I know what is my problem. I used brush to write down all the letter first to see which one looked better, and drew the outlines in computer. I think that's why I lose some rules in my font. I'm also appreciated Eben's suggestion! Your details about the differences among my font are really helpful. And you're right, to do such experiment is really not easy!
But I do learn something. Anyway, thank you both!


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