Ampulosa [Critique] 

guillem's picture

First of all, hello from a newbie who has lurked a bit without daring to join any conversation until now.

And second, allow me to introduce my very first font. Any non ego crushing criticism/suggestion/etc will be welcome. Thanks!

Bert Vanderveen's picture

You need to study the relationship between inner space and the space between glyphs. And rhythm. Glyphs knit together in words and words into sentences need a certain flow... Your /m/ is like a stop sign. And your /s/ like a splotch of liquid soap.

Also, try to avoid too much copy/paste — it impedes character.

bojev's picture

Your connection on the desender of the g is rough looking - does not flow. Bert is right your s is tight and awkward.

guillem's picture

Bert Vanderveen:
/m/ - Completely agree. I think I can save it by making it wider. Something between what it is now and two /n/ tied together.
Rhythm/flow - Is it the glyphs' shapes what produces it? Or my kerning needs revision too?
Copy&paste - I don't get it at all.

Bert Vanderveen & bojev:
/s/ - Completely (and bitterly) agree. It's one of the glyphs I touched and retouched most, and I think the more I touch it the worse it gets. Maybe I should try to redo it with a more diagonal stroke in the centre?

bojev:
/g/ - I wanted to make it different. I see different does not necessarily mean better. I will try to stick to a more conventional g.

Thank you both!

cerulean's picture

I don't think the horizontally cut terminals on the round strokes are suitable in the context of these shapes. It's like they're whittled to sharp points. I'd cut them perpendicular to the stroke as you have done with /a/.

guillem's picture

Thank you cerulean.

In fact, the original /a/ had an horizontal cut too. I made it perpendicular because horizontal looked horrible. I don't know why didn't I do the same with the rest. I think I kind of liked how it looked like in the /c/ and others (and "kind of like" often leads to "feel attached"). But I will give a go to your suggestion!

37DMK's picture

I do like the concept of rounded endings of the strokes. The most important input i would like to give you is, to make the stroke width a bit more continuous, by having same stroke widths for all the horizontal, vertical and round (of course differing between vertical- and horizontal-round) strokes. When i see the uppercase «S» and the lowercase «s» i start to think, that you might have drawn the uppercase «S» first and then tried to scale it down to a lowercase «s». Of course only if that’s the case, i would recommend you first to draw letters like «n» and «o», then test them and look for a rhythm with the white space between that fits your purpose and suits your taste. if you have those two letters you can derive a lot of forms. Not to be derived are organic forms like the «s», the «g» and the «a». They are unique and you would do well to draw them as such.

I hope i could help you. Here is a link to a picture, that shows you pretty much what «flow» means. Those letters look totally constructed, but if you have a look at the «S» you may realize, that there is no way to easily construct organic forms.
http://maxboam.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/thomasewingfrench-essentialso...

I think what Bert tried to say with «try to avoid copy paste» is: The round shape of a lowercase «d» and the round shape of the «o» should be treated a bit separately. I don’t see too much copy paste in your font myself, so i can not give you any specifics.

best regards

guillem's picture

Hello 37DMK .

Yes, there's quite a bit of "that" copypaste, so my /d/ looks like an /o/ with a stick instead of like a letter by itself?. If that's what you and Bert Vanderveen are trying to make me realise, I think I have a huge load of work to do.

Regarding the /S/-/s/, there was no scaling (in fact, I did all the lower case first), but the analogy was perfect to have an idea of what my /s/ looks like. This raises another question: does that mean you found my /S/ to be "the good one" (or at least, more consistent)? Every time I look at it I wish there was less difference between the two curves.

I'm quite surprised nobody told anything about the verticals of the /M/ and the horizontal of the /A/. I find them less and less in harmony with the rest of the glyphs. But maybe that's just a pet peeve preventing me to see the real problems.

Regarding the "flow", I guess it's an eye training thing and will eventually click.

Thank you very much!

37DMK's picture

Hello guillem.
I think we get to know each other. I am sorry for assuming, that the lowercase «s» is a scaled uppercase and yes i think the uppercase «S» is a good start. Sure there is a lot of work, but don’t worry, making a font is always a huge load of work and the process is what matters, because the results always keep getting better and better while you optimise your workflow.

When you referring to the verticals of the «A», now i see, that they are a tad on the thick side (But i make that mistake all the time so who am i to tell) and more important i would lower the horizontal bar, so you have more space inside it (per haps you thought to make it on the same height as the lowercase «f» middle bar, but if you have a look at this: «Af» i think you get the picture). Also stroke widths should be continuous like: the verticals are the widest, the diagonals are a little less wide and the horizontals are the most narrow ones. The round strokes can be mostly fit into the widths of the other strokes, except for the uppercase round strokes, you will want to make them a tad wider when you simply look at strokes with the exact same width. Also if you want to make it a little more pleasing to the eye you could make the ascending diagonal strokes a little thinner than the descending ones (but that depends on the taste and the area of usage).

i hope that helps you.

and again best regards

guillem's picture

Hello 37DMK ,

No reason to be sorry!

I will try to lower the horizontal stroke of the /A/ to the same level of the /G/ chin, and tweak a bit the stroke widths, together with the other suggestions in the thread. That will keep me busy for a while!

Thank you for both super elaborate answers!

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