The average / 'perfect' lettershape...

dux's picture

There was a discussion here recently on this matter. I was waiting for a piece of work to be printed before contributing, but alas, I cannot find the thread.

I explored a line of thought which suggests a methodology of finding this 'perfect' / 'average' / 'agreed' typeface. The idea is not new: it is essentially Frutiger's 'a'. The difference here is that I used programming / automation to more quickly arrive at results. What I should've done, but didn't at the time, was to take the average left and right sidebearing's for each character also. It would be interesting to test the results on a vastly greater number of types, but of course, the method of experiment here is questionable.

http://www.moreducks.com/other/metabet_font.jpg

http://www.fontshop.be/details.php?entry=246

Manlio Napoli's picture

Interesting results. The Neutral Project is a different path to a similar target.

Nick Shinn's picture

Frutiger did the same thing with his own type designs--but he left out Ondine.

ralf h.'s picture

Well, scientist already tried that with human faces. Take 100 portraits and morph them togheter. You will get a face, that everyone will consider beautiful. But still, most people will prefer a beautiful face of a real person.
I guess the same is true for typefaces. A "perfect" typeface is one that fulfills its purpose. An avarage typeface will never be perfect, because it is not optimized for a certain purpose.

But nevertheless I would love to see a this typeface! :-)

Ralf

dux's picture

'Perfect' is of course tied up with romantic philosophical notions of the absolute.

There's an excellent american artist who has done something similar to that Ralf:
http://salavon.com/SpecialMoments/SpecialMoments.shtml

Nick: Ondine kinda breaks the mold!

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