First timer

YOTS's picture

Howdy folks, new guy here. This is the first typeface I’ve ever created and I’ve been working on it for a few days now and I still have some work to do on it. It’s all based on the grid you see in the background and all the angles are 45 degrees. I still need to adjust some of the widths of the characters and I’m not loving the N, but overall I like the way it’s coming out. I’m just creating uppercase characters cause I eventually want to use this for big headlines and such. I also plan to do numbers and punctuation as well. Let me know what you guys think. Go easy on me...

Choz Cunningham's picture

Welcome, new guy. It can be a quite tense experience just to throw a graphic up here. A'ight, I'll give it a go if everyone else is quiet. Some of my comments are guesses at what others might think, because thats sorta fun.

Love the G.

With so many other symmetrical letters, not super hot on the Y. I might think otherwise if I saw it in action.

How closely are you planning the letters to sit? If they are too close it will make even headlined tough to read, but I think that A would look cool perfectly abutting its following glyph.

The B makes gridsense, but is probably unsettling to the locals with the suggested center-stroke being so low. I suspect the logic was to match the P & R, but if you want that purposely top-heavy vibe, bring it out in another letter or two as well, maybe? There is more room to play with "inside the grid" than you might first assume.

The chopped centers of M & W have some interesting potential. They fit well qith the uneven top-right of the V and the Bottom-right of the A. Perhaps you could snip the inside of the top-right corner of the W to a 45 degree? What I see here is not "formal", so play more and see what you get. What about moving the angled leg of the K up n' over a bit so it chops off like the A?

The O is adequate and logical. The Q, however, is very cool, and requires that the O look exactly like you have it.

If you aren't down with the N, maybe it could get a right triangle lopped off on the inside of the left top. That would make it look like the W if that approach worked there, and would yet strangely reinforce the most striking aspect of the letter.

Hide the grid for screenshots unless you need it to illustrate something particular, and I think people will be less distracted.

Two more suggestions. Throw a word or two up for analysis, like, "hotdoggievons," or, "free beer with font." Then people can see the flow better. And if you think you might ever want a numeral or punctuation, start visualizing it now. (edit: I mean start actually drawing it alongside the letters, so that they can borrow from each other, synergize, or whatever one might call it.)

Oh yeah, last of all, before you take any of my advice seriously, you should probably search what sort of fonts I make. Guess that goes for others, too.

YOTS's picture

Choz, thanks for the feedback, it is very very helpful. You make some very excellent points that I'm definitely going to consider.

I see what you mean about the Y and I will definitely try a version that is symmetrical. The reason I did the Y this way was because I saw an opportunity to create and not so traditional character that played off of the angles of the A, V and K. It's actually a K flipped and the top arm removed (I still don't have my type terminology down).

I do have to see how the letters work with each other in a word and that's the next thing I'm going to try out. Not sure yet how closely the letter will sit but your idea with the A is very interesting. Should create some very interesting shapes.

The B is starting to not feel right and yes the initial idea was to match it to the P and the R. I'm going to play with it some more I just feel that if I do change it and its not working with the P and the R that it won't be consistent.

I have considered bringing more of the chopped feel into it but if I do adjust the K it will throw off the R as well. That's something I'm going to play with a little more.

I have some ideas in my head based on your suggestion for the N that I'm going to play with and see how they come out.

Thanks again for the feedback, it was very helpful and gave me some new ways to approach the typeface. I'm going to make some more adjustments and post again.

YOTS's picture

Ok so I worked on it some more today and I think I have all the characters down. I've adjusted the N, X, B, K, Y and Z. I also decided to use two versions of the A and V and 3 versions on the Y. When I create the actual FONT I want to build it so that it figures out which combnations of letters to use to make they work best together. I know this is possible cause I've seen multiple fonts do this but I'm not exactly sure how to create that. Anyone?

I've arrange some words out to see how the letters play with each other and you will notice the use of the different A's, V's and Y's. Actually I just noticed that the A in the word Magic is the wrong direction.

Anyways, I still need to create the numbers which will be my next step and I have started on some of the punctuations. I want to create as many as I can to make it as complete as possible.

Let me know what you guys think.

ebensorkin's picture

Seeing it used helps me get an idea about your intent. Is this meant to be good for posters where the idea is to catch the eye with a 'mistake' that can be interpreted correctly?

I think your M is oddly enough working already. Whereas the V is not at all. The K is working. I think you should consider making more weird versions of the semi normal ones and some more normal versions of the weird ones. And just explore more. Like Choz said there are way way more solutions out there. Also, other folks have made a ton of fonts like this. Look at what they did. See if you can justify the existance of this font with a novel solution/letter-shape or overall feeling.

Choz Cunningham's picture

Seeing text really makes a difference in this one, since the charm is largely in the interaction, I think. The tight spacing is compelling in the AY. The mirrored variants are a great idea. That is the kind of thing I would have stumbled across back in the day, and happily agonized over which to choose in a banner or masthead. Are those going to fill up some of the free area in the lowercase zone? (Of course, there's 3 Ys, oh no) :)

I do have to note that the \| version of the V reads a bit like a minimalist N when I go fast.

Stupid question, perhaps, but, uh, why don't the A's have blacked-out counters?

YOTS's picture


Yes the idea behind the this typeface is to use for big headlines or posters.

Thanks for the suggestions. I'm going to continue working on them and see what I come up with.

YOTS's picture


The A counter isn't blacked out for 2 reasons.

1. I tried it out blacked out and the letter just didn't read well. The character had more "character" with the counter.

2. If you notice all the blacked out counters are all curved ones.

I do see what you mean about the \| version but this typeface is intended to be used very large and for big blocks of copy. Not meant to be used in a big copy block so I think even though it might be confused with an N at first, that the viewer will pick up that its a V.

What do you mean by the free area in the lowercase zone?

ebensorkin's picture

Especially for posters you might want to think about not just designing extra versions of each letter but also pairs & tripples. Then you can make the oddness/interestingness of the relationships work much more completely. Then you could have for instance a special AV pair where the leggs go past each other. Or a Ligature. Or both.

YOTS's picture


That's exactly what I plan to do.

YOTS's picture

Well I worked on it some more. Did all the numbers, most of the punctuation's and I also did a "thin" version. What do you think of the blacked out counters on the thin version? I couldn't decide what to do since in theory those characters would remain the same since the counters are blacked out. But it does make those characters look heavier so maybe for I would make them normal.

ebensorkin's picture

I have seen fonts where the bold has filled counters and the light does not. I would go that route. It's a nice combination. What happened to the alts, pairs & tripples? Are they still on the way? Alt numbers too please! And Ampersands!

YOTS's picture

Eben, for now I'm not going to do the pairs and triples. I barely understand how to create a font using TypeTool and when I looked into doing pairs and triples with those Microsoft and Adobe kits, it just seems confusing as hell. I'll add them in the future. Right now I just want to get a working font together.

Or I can just do a Alternative version kind of like Avant Garde and use those other versions of the characters.

I did a clean version for the thin which looks very nice. I'll post it soon.

ebensorkin's picture

Yeah, you could do it with scripting as you say...

But for your purposes I was thinking like you that additional fonts with alts up to an including ligatures a la Avant Garde would be the way to go - especially for posters.

If this was a text font you would want scripting so you didn't have to dink with it every 10th line. For a poster you SHOULD be dinking with it. So scripting isn't needed.

YOTS's picture

Good idea. I'm going to do a thin, regular and alt version. very nice. You think I should do alts of the numbers as well?

As far as ligatures go I would just combined two characters into one glyph correct? Then how would you access the ligature? Special key combo?

ebensorkin's picture

Yeah, numbers would be cool - and it could boaden the appeal of the font set.

Some ligatures have official places. Likke lc ff & fi. In your case you should probably just canibalize - but use as much of a system as you can.

maximebuechi's picture

it is interesting.
maybe could you also test it in use. I mean lay it out in poster-like designs, to check its stylistic value…

ebensorkin's picture

By Canibalize I mean just using whichever key is the most sensical. EG using the v key if you have a va ligature & so on. Not every ligature will be easy to choose a key for but dont forget there are caps & lc spaces to take. ANd if you have to use an L key for a V ligature because you have too many - it's not the end of the world...

YOTS's picture

Thanks guys. I'm going to try and set this up as a font and test it out.

ebensorkin's picture

You know, just now I was looking again and it occured to me to suggest that you make a "normal" A too and V etc. Just to extend the use & give a user some choice.

Before you get too involved in the font program you might want to go read Briem too.

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