Start Grotesque

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Samara Keller's picture
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Joined: 25 Dec 2016 - 6:43pm
Start Grotesque
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Hi everyone
We are two young graphic designers from Switzerland that are obsessed with type. We just started designing our first typeface and our biggest problem is that we don’t really have anyone experienced to critique our typeface and show us “how it’s done”. So please, rip it to shreds :)
Also English is not our first language so excuse us if we used the wrong typographic terms. We hope it’s still readable.

The idea of the typeface:
We wanted to create a modern typeface that references and gets people interested in the history of how the individual letters developed and came about. Thats why there are uncoventional characters for a grotesque typeface and also why a lot of characteristics (hard counters that connect to the stem) reference old blackletter style.
For example the diaeresis (¨) was first an e that was written above the letter to modify the sound of the vowel.
Also we used the old characters of the long s and the old variant of the hyphen.
For the look and feel we referenced the classic german grotesque typefaces of the 18th century (venus, royal, ideal grotesk to name a few).

The typeface is in no way finished or even close to it, so most of it is up change. Our current plan looks like this(if in your experience a different workflow would be better please tell us):
- Create a basic typeface weight with all Letters (numbers still missing)
- Get as much feedback and critique as possible and also take a hard look at the typeface ourselves (current stage)
- Finish the first weight (additional Glyphs, Kerning, Hinting)
- Expand it, create Light, Italics, Bold and more versions of the first weight

We don’t really think that we will have a final version in the next months so we are just beginning!

We are really excited to hear your feedback on our first attempt on a typeface

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Samara Keller's picture
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Joined: 25 Dec 2016 - 6:43pm
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Yeah, we thought we could use as much feedback as possible so we decided to also post it here. I hope that this is ok and it doesn't break any rules, we will be happy to change the post or provide further information if something is missing.
We were just really excited to get into the world of type design :-)

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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It's more than OK! This is a great place to get feedback. I was just hoping to avoid re-posting my feedback.

Héctor Muñoz Huerta's picture
Joined: 21 Feb 2003 - 11:00am
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Maybe it's just me but the thickness of some upper case letters seems a little bit off: F and Z seem a bit light in this sample.

Samara Keller's picture
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Joined: 25 Dec 2016 - 6:43pm
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Hey Héctor
In the mean time we worked on the stems of our typeface. We're not quite there but we are unifying the terminals and characters.
What do you mean to the new upper case letters ? :-)

Frode Bo Helland's picture
Joined: 26 Feb 2007 - 1:03pm
+1

How far back are you going with this? There is so much to explore, but still hard to be consequent: The comma originated from a lowered, reduced, virgulae (slash). W was two u’s merged together. Many such historical letter variants have their own Unicode slot, as for example the superscript e above. (In fact, the modern dieresis and raised e lived side by side in late medieval/early renaissance manuscripts and printed books.)