You've checked out my numbers, now check out my letters

jonathanhughes's picture

These are the letters that go along with the numbers in my "check out my numbers thread."

Any feedback about width, consistency, etc. would be greatly appreciated.



letters_jh1.pdf215.02 KB
jh_letters_2.pdf222.81 KB
jh_letters_3.pdf218.23 KB
Bendy's picture

Ok, please take comments with a dose of salt...I'm also a beginner.
A needs a hair less weight on the left diagonal for optical balance with the right side.
B and C are great. D I think looks heavier on the right than on the left.
E may be a notch too wide.
G: I think the bottom corner should move down a bit and I'd think about a longer crossbar.
The serifs on I look a bit wide, perhaps that was intentional?
K: the top arm looks heavier than the bottom...thin it slightly?
The contrast on M looks reversed and it's quite narrow overall.
N normally has a slightly heavier join at the top than at the bottom to keep the weight optically centred.
O and P are lovely.
Q looks narrow (is it the same as O?) and needs more counterspace. The bar needs to move right too, I think.
The leg of R starts a bit too close to the stem and the counterspace underneath it seems oppressed by the counterspace to its right.
S is pretty nice, but may be slightly wide?
V and Y might have the same trouble as A. The right diagonal should be slightly thinner (just a few units)
W: see M.
Did you take some weight off 7? It still looks heavy.
I'm not sure about the taper on the hat of 1...the terminals everywhere else are the same width as the strokes.
Overall this is looking very neat. Nice. :)

jonathanhughes's picture

Thanks! I'll look into these over the weekend.

Yes, the I is intentionally wide. These letters all go within circles, and it seemed like the I needed to be a little wider than normal to fill up the circle a little more. (I didn't post how these look inside the circles because I wanted the comments to focus on the shape of the letters).

Some of the other width issues (like the narrow M and W) also have to do with these letters going inside of circles. I wanted to give them a little room within the circle. If I ever use these letters as the basis for a normal typeface, I'll definitely need to address those issues. Once I get these letters cleaned up more, I'll post a version showing them within their circles.

I did trim down the 7, but I'm thinking that the 7 in the PDF file I posted is not the trimmed down one. I'll look into that.

Good catch on the Q. I thought I had used my most recent O as the basis for the Q, but I didn't.

I'm glad the S didn't ring any alarms. That's my least favorite character to draw.

I'm not sure what you mean about the contrast of the M being reversed.


jonathanhughes's picture

I've posted an updated version the original post.

I think I now get your comment about the M and W. My previous version had them symmetrical, like Helvetica Neue, but I've adjusted them a bit so they follow the same pattern as Univers.

Bendy's picture

>I’m not sure what you mean about the contrast of the M being reversed.

Sorry, not very accurate language. I meant that the left diagonal needs to be heavier than the right one for optical balance, and it looked the other way round. I think you've cracked it anyway now. It's all looking really neat :)

I wonder if you might make the strokes of A slightly slightly narrower near the apex. I'm guessing the eye expects the base to be slightly weightier to not look top heavy. It'd just be a matter of a couple of units probably and I'd open the counter's top to make a tiny trap there to achieve that I think. The crossbar might withstand moving down a tiddly fraction but I'm being very picky now!

Right side of P may need to be slightly wider. Compare it next to O and the stroke looks thinner. R possibly too.

D may be slightly wide but my eyes are starting to play tricks from looking at this so minutely. Anyway I think the widths are fixed by the circles you need.

If you want to take this further, set some text and it'll be easier to see any inconsistencies, but it is looking pretty well made as it is.


cerulean's picture

The round sides of D, O, Q are way heavy. C, G, not as much so, but still a little.

jonathanhughes's picture

Picky is good! This stuff has helped a lot. All this minor stuff is what's making it look more like a finished font.

The new version is in the top post.

thanks again!

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