Olicana - On sale now

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Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
Olicana - On sale now
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Hi typophiles, (or typenerds as my wife calls us),

This is my first post inviting criticism of my design.

I'm working on this informal script at the moment. I drew it with pen and ink first to get the thick/thin contrast, but I didn't want it to look 'Dickensian' - I'm trying to achieve a naturally flowing style without formal stiffness. I have completed the 'rough' style, and I thought it might look pretty good as a smooth style - so that's what I'm doing now. I'm also going to produce a more refined 'fine' with as-thin-as-I-can-go thins style.

At the moment it is Postscript, but I'm toying with the idea of contextual alternates in Opentype. The FontLab manual is no great help as I find it to be written from a programmers viewpoint, unfortunately I'm a designer and a lot of that stuff goes way over my head. I wish Leslie Cabarga had written the manual, as his 'Learn FontLab Fast' has excellent illustrated step-by-steps, but is a bit brief in the OpenType section.

Does anybody know of any easy to understand intructions of exactly what to do, as I'm very impatient with plowing through the manual to extract the info.

Thanks in advance,

See new pdf. 28 November 2006

Nick Cooke, G-Type.

Lauri Johnsen's picture
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Joined: 19 Mar 2004 - 4:11am
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Nick,

The script looks really beautiful. I like both the rough and clean styles. Since it's thicker than a lot of scripts it would be perfect for setting logos, and lots of other uses too, of course.

Sorry, I can't help you with OpenType, but check out build section for lots of posts on the subject.

paul d hunt's picture
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Joined: 5 May 2005 - 8:44pm
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it looks lovely, would love to see more! for some OpenType help, check out [[OT_How-To]], post questions to the build forum, or you can contact me directly.

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Thanks for your comments. Here's some more.

I will take you up on your offer Paul.

'Bezier wrangler' - like it!

Nick Cooke

Carl Crossgrove's picture
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Joined: 8 Sep 2003 - 2:07pm
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Nick,

This last sample shows how interesting and vital this design can be. Please, DO take it to the next logical level and add contextual alternates. 1, 2 or 3 alternates per letter, plus a bunch of ligatures and final forms would make this a really exciting handwriting face. I think the rough version is best.

If you are not versed in OpenType code, you might want someone to help you set that up. It can be confusing, and it definitely requires patience in testing, but I think the shapes you have already have terrific promise.

This is unique in that it seems to be written with a pointed quill dipped in an inkwell. Very few script typefaces give that feeling. The 'splat' alternates will be like icing. Keep going!

Dave Bailey's picture
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Joined: 25 Jul 2005 - 3:07pm
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This looks excellent, as stated above it's a very hand-crafted/familiar feel to it. Not an easy task!

Joe Graham's picture
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Joined: 13 Feb 2003 - 11:56am
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Olicana now has a thinner new family member of a more delicate disposition, Olicana Fine. Sample, PDF specimen etc here:
http://www.type.co.uk/a_to_z/id/39100

Göran Söderström's picture
Joined: 15 Feb 2006 - 2:53am
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It is really looking great, Nick!

On of the best script fonts I've seen so far.

Katharina's picture
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Joined: 21 Aug 2007 - 4:18am
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Do I spot ink stains from "DEAD MAN Blotting" on the images? - Just curious.

Dave Curry's picture
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Joined: 7 Jul 2008 - 12:44pm
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Beautiful font. I was lucky enough to find it on Veer before they pulled it. Looks great in one of my stores! I'm glad I happened upon this.

Jon Hochman's picture
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Joined: 8 Oct 2007 - 10:17pm
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I understand. It’s a font worth waiting for.

Joshua Lurie-Terrell's picture
Joined: 2 Apr 2003 - 4:37pm
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Nick, Stephen filled me in on Veer's ridiculous new terms, handed down to them by their new owners. I think it's horrible that one of the most forward-looking American type vendors has allowed themselves to be hobbled by new ownership. It's really too bad.

Since they've obviously neglected to live up to their side of their contract with you, are you looking for another American vendor?

Tim Lapetino's picture
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Joined: 10 Sep 2006 - 4:44pm
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Nick, I really like this typeface.

How did you go about adding the roughness of texture to the non-smooth version? Did you have a piece of texture used to take "bites" out of the letterforms in Illustrator, or how did you go about it?

Thanks for the help, and great work on Olicana. BTW, is there a place in the US that distributes it?

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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How are you installing the font?

Katharina's picture
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Joined: 21 Aug 2007 - 4:18am
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www.myfonts.com/fonts/volcano/deadman/blotting/

Sorry, Nick, as I am too lazy to make my own ink stains I kind of assumed that everyone uses prefabricated ones ;-)

ballbea's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2008 - 9:12am
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I have bought the Olicana pakage, but cannot install it.
When I try to install it it installs as Calisto, but Calisto writes like Calisto, not Olicana.
I was looking thru my font library, and noticed that none of my fonts end like Olicana does in .otf. Most other fonts end in .ttf
Any advice?
I have a Mac

Sharon Van Lieu's picture
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Joined: 14 May 2004 - 2:17am
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Can't help with your install problem but .otf stands for open type format, so that is a good thing. :-)

Tom Lukacs's picture
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Joined: 26 May 2006 - 7:52pm
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I do too, Katharina, but I'm quite lazy as well ;-)
Isn't that what they're there for in the first place?
Kudos to Nick though for making his own!

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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There is some contractual wrangling between Veer and Fontworks UK going on at the moment. Veer have removed the entire G-Type collection from their website. Hopefully it will be sorted, and reinstated soon.

Of course it is still available at Fontworks UK

Nick Cooke

Salvatore Strati's picture
Joined: 30 Apr 2007 - 1:42am
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I have been moved by this typefce to make my first post - this strikes me as a magnificent creation Mr Nick.

I have found almost all scripts to be a problem in one way or another based on my particular prejudices, and can think of only one or two instance of using one in my work over the last 11 years.

I am currently working on a Heritage project and this face would be ultra suitable for this so am keen to know when it becomes available. I have created a defacto face for the display implementation by digitising an original sample of a gothic face printed within the local area in 1851. Olicana will work beautifully in key paragraph settings and will add some real humanity to the various applications.

Sorry to hear about your legal trevails.

Salvatore
Lyttelton, New Zealand

carsten's picture
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Joined: 10 Nov 2007 - 1:29pm
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The font looks really awesome. Good job!

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Empty your font cache and reboot. You can use the utility "Font Cache Cleaner"
now called Font Finnagler

http://homepage.mac.com/mdouma46/fcache/fcache.html

ChrisL

Andy Martin's picture
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Joined: 3 Mar 2006 - 8:00pm
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I love it Nick, absolutely beautiful.

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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very nice indeed

----------
Paul Ducco
Graphic Design

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Beatriz, I'm sorry that Olicana isn't working for you, but unfortunately I have no idea why this should be. I have never heard of anybody having this problem before. Are you using FontBook? I never have any problems with that, and I've generated, uninstalled, regenerated and reinstalled Olicana many times when developing it. Did Chris's suggestion work? Have you tried uninstalling Calisto and then installing Olicana? I don't see why there should be a clash, if indeed there is one.

Nick Cooke

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Is that an altered Fl ligature I see there Dave?

Never mind, thanks for using it anyway. That's BIG handwriting alright!

Nick Cooke

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Hi Joshua, no it isn't available in the US at the moment due to Veer pulling my entire collection. As Veer have an unreasonable new contract this situation will probably not be resolved, so it will probably be available through another distributor soon. It's silly really, as it was doing so well, especially after being named as one of Typographica's Favorite fonts of 2007. Anyway, It is available through Fontworks UK (see Nov 7).

Nick Cooke

Joshua Lurie-Terrell's picture
Joined: 2 Apr 2003 - 4:37pm
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Nick, is the smooth available in the US yet?

JLT

---

jlt : http://www.hewnandhammered.com

Michael Ebert's picture
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Joined: 18 Aug 2004 - 9:18pm
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Can't seem to find "Olicana Rough" on Veer anymore... what's up?

--Michael.

------------------------------------------------------
// love what you do or do something else. //
Michael Ebert -- graphic designer, jazz saxophonist, horror movie devotee
------------------------------------------------------

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Now that's a goddam shame about Veer.
What will take its place?

Somebody start a thread or something.

hhp

Stephen Coles's picture
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Joined: 14 May 2001 - 11:00am
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I was just about to ask that.

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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No you don't - they're all mine. Why would I want to copy ink blots?

“DEAD MAN Blotting”? - say what?

Nick Cooke

Joe Graham's picture
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Joined: 13 Feb 2003 - 11:56am
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Chaps, I must clarify matters as some of you seem a bit confused. Olicana is, and always has been, available from Fontworks and our type.co.uk website [[http://www.type.co.uk/index.php?p=eCD&let=*&id=31311]] so there's no waiting necessary, go and buy it today!

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Really - it's no big deal. I didn't carefully draw them you know!

Nick Cooke

André's picture
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Joined: 27 Feb 2008 - 2:10pm
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This is very good. I love the rough version.

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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I didn't add roughness and texture - that's how I drew it with a pen originally. I don't like artificial texturing - it doesn't look authentic.

The smooth style came second; I redrew it in a smooth style.

As to your last question - see the above post. I think it has been sorted, and will be reinstated soon.

Nick Cooke

Stephen Coles's picture
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Joined: 14 May 2001 - 11:00am
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To clarify JLT's comment, I don't know where the new terms came from. I was simply reacting to what Nick said in his last post above.

Jon Hochman's picture
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Joined: 8 Oct 2007 - 10:17pm
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Nick, let us know when it’s back on sale in the US.

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Maybe soonish. Sorry, can't be any vaguer than that.

Things in the pipeline at the mo.

Nick Cooke

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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OK, I've now worked on it some more and have finally got my head around OpenType features.

This is as far as I am to date - do I know when to stop? I don't think so! I could keep adding and adding forever, but have to draw the line somewhere, I do have other stuff to finish as well. I might do some fancy swash lower case alternates like the b, d, h, k, l, p, q and y, to go with the caps.

Many thanks for the previous comments BTW.

Nick Cooke

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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Nick, this is really lovely.

I can imagine that if I were to design a script typeface I would also have a difficult time knowing when to stop.

If anything your suggestion to make some swashier lowercase alternates to pair with the swash uppercase is a good idea. I feel like the lowercase doesn't quite match the swash uppercase, but a few alts would go very far in mending that.

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Thanks miss T.

I know what you mean about the Swashes not matching the lower case:
The rest of the font looks 'fast' whereas the swash caps look like they were written by an enfeebled oldster.

I don't know why, but I can't achieve that same fluency with the swashes, but I quite like that amateurish feel for them all the same.

Nick Cooke

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Nick, if you could incorporate "mistakes" (not just irregularity, variance and errant ink) using OT then you'd be breaking the one true barrier blocking type from looking -sufficiently, if not truly- like handwriting.

hhp

Nick Cooke's picture
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Joined: 25 May 2004 - 2:29am
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Got any suggestions Hrant?

Nick Cooke

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Typos (so to speak), crossed-out stuff, scruntching to fit lines, etc.
I have an article somewhere that goes pretty deeply into the types of mistakes people make when writing.

The hard part I think might be simulating randomness. I know that PS code has/had something like that. But if there's no random function available, sufficient complexity (like making contextual decisions based on multiple and/or non-obvious criteria) can appear random.

hhp

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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Hrant, post that article as PDF, if you could kind sir. :^)

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Oh man...

hhp

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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When you have time, Hrant. It just sounds very interesting.

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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So it should be an OCR-ed thing, right? What a pain...

Here's an idea: I'll snailmail you a photocopy of it, and
you can do the rest. Since you're the one who asked... :->

But wait, what about copyright? It's from Visible Language.
Oh, I know: email them and ask for permission. Yeah, you. :->

hhp

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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Which issue? I could go to the library to find it myself. Then you could save on postage too. ;^)

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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My Excel doc of the VL index doesn't show
it for some reason, so off to the garage I go...

hhp