Mondegreen Roman and Italic

Sindre's picture

Dear fellow typophiles,

Criticising Ben Mitchell's great Eternal Italic made me realise how little knowledge I have of italics. For some reason, I've never been very fond of them. Even for calligraphy, I've always preferred upright romans. Probably something genetic.

So I thought it was time to put a little ink to that white spot on my typographical mind map. (Not literally. All my typefaces start with mouse in hand and no clear idea. I've found that construction by improvisation is the best method for me.)

So here is a rough draft of my first attempt at an italic. Simultaneously, I drew a roman companion, based on a few glyphs I made earlier this summer. Of course, I think the roman is vastly superior to the italic. I really need criticism and help.

Although the roman is rather Didone in stress (but transitional in detail), I've made its italic with a slant of only 10 degrees, just to make things a little easier. (And I must say I find extreme italic slant rather unappealing.) The capitals are even more upright, at approximately seven degrees. They are also deliberately much less italicised than the lower case, I want them to work in all cap settings. Perhaps I'll make some alternate caps later.

This definitely does not mean that I've abandoned work on Ethos. (But perhaps I've abandoned Schola. I don't know if I like it anymore.) I just need to do something else for a while. Drawing more than 3000 sans serif glyphs is a little ... tiring.

So please, I need your help on these two creations. They're both unpolished, and ready to go in new directions. The name is but a joke, but it's a nice name, I think.

mondegreen1.pdf256.91 KB
mondegreen2.pdf255.78 KB
mondegreen3.pdf255.56 KB
mondegreen4.pdf35.68 KB
mondegreen5.pdf240.84 KB
mondegreen_specimen.pdf59.67 KB
nina's picture

Sindre! Amazing. I'd need more time for a fuller crit. But just wanted to say I really like the color and proportions of the roman, its sturdy & stable and yet friendly feel – it feels both harmonious ("reliable") and fresh I think. Quite exciting!
(I'm spontaneously very fond of the "k" and "J".)

Regarding the italics, I don't know anywhere near enough about italics… so go find a saltmine ;-). But just staring at these alphabets, my partly-educated eye wonders if your italic lowercase (so soft/brushy/playful!) is a bit separate from the rest of the family? It seems quite different from the roman in character; so I'd be curious to see it in text, especially to observe how roman & italic work together.

BTW, that's a funny asterisk. Reminds me of flesh-eating plants, or something from a 70s scifi movie. :-)

Sindre's picture

Thanks, Nina! Your kind words are fuel for my work ethos. It's very cool that you dig k and J, as those are amongst my favourites, too, while I'm very unsure about g, Q and r.

These uneducated eyes also share your doubts about the italic/roman relationship. One can possibly think of them as Lady and Lord Mondegreen, married to each other of political and economical reasons rather than of love. I need to work a lot on the spacing (and some basic kerning) before they can set a text together, but as soon as possible, I'll upload some text settings.

That asterisk is the World's First Seven-pointed Asterisk™. I really hope it'll work. (I just bought myself a glorious Dionæa muscipula, by the way, which probably has inspired me on a subconscious level.)

Sindre's picture

Gee, I got severely stuck by force of nature, or rather lack thereof. Therefore, just a quick mock-up, using Illustrator's optical spacing algorithm.

I think the roman/italic relationship might work, but I'm wondering if the italic needs a slighter x-height. What do you think, Typophiles?

Bendy's picture

Oh my goodness!!

First up. Thanks for the compliment! I'm thrilled my experimentation is so inspiring! Second. Don't give up on Schola. I was at a stage with Eternal where I'd gone off it for a bit, thinking it unresolveable as my first (bad) font. I just needed a rest from it, and making the italic after learning to see details gave me better ideas about proportions and density that I could retrofit back onto the roman.

Thirdly, I am vastly impressed with this lovely (fast!) work! Your asterisk looks like a mischievous little alien, in a good way, it put a smile on my face :D

We seem to have gotten ourselves a great little learners group going here! I'm finding it very exciting.

This is terribly interesting! The shapes you've made are so nice. Traps, cupping, serifs, contrast all look really good. I like the way I'm not sure whether to resolve it as Clarendon, Baskerville or Georgia, lovely.

I'll start with the roman uppercase.
A is very clever. I like the slight thorn on the top left, the trap in the counter and the crossbar.
C: I'm not sure if the lower serif works for me. Ask other people.
D: well done.
G: May need more weight on the stem.
J: That kind of taper makes me happy.
K, M, Q, R: Really neat shapes. In fact all the others are great too. Z may need bevelling on it's vertices.

h, k and m may be a bit wide, I'd need to see text to be sure.
r: heavier beak/bigger ball?
t: I don't understand its top.
y: can the tail be darker than the right arm? I think it looks a bit light below.
z: see Z.

There's maybe some optical correction needed. For example the M has a darker downhill diagonal than the right side vertical, probably from slanting. Check the other downhill diagonals esp RSVWXY, I think they're a bit heavy.
Q and Z could be more exotic given the lowercase dynamism. Maybe K and R too?

Reminds me of Dolly, but somehow more classical looking. It's funny I was reading the other day that the italic should harmonise with the roman, but can be a cousin rather than a sibling...and I wondered how far that could be pushed. Eternal has only a few common elements between the roman and italic, and I think it's more in the balance between soft/hard than in the actual shapes that form the glyphs. Your roman and italic are quite distant cousins in structure, tone and stylistic influence, I would say, but I'm liking the contrast. I think the two could be reconciled, or perhaps developed into one of those families that has varying degrees of brushy-cursiveness instead of the normal roman/bold/italic branches*. I think it'd definitely be worth exploring a more upright italic. (Lord and Lady, Count and Countess?)

*check out Émilie Rigaud's Coline typeface on the Reading students' MA submissions if you haven't already.

I like the name Mondegreen!

Keep up the great work :)

Bendy's picture

Sorry, forgot to look at the italic lowercase glyphs!
On the whole I like the darkness as often italics go a bit spindly. This is really difficult as I'm only just starting to see how italics work. I like the way you're sure of your contrast. dgkowz look like they work best. s looks a bit too sloped. I'm least sure about r and x: they look a bit too 'just so' for the flowiness of the other glyphs, with their ball terminals. Right side of y might be a bit cloggy?
I'm afraid I need to study italics more to be of much use! :S Still it's interesting to try!

Sindre's picture

Thank you for yet another very helpful critique, Ben. And thank you for your praise of my typeface-in-progress.

I have little time now, so I'll just upload this new pdf. You'll see that I have redrawn almost every glyph, following your suggestions and my own second thoughts. I've thrown out all the ball terminals from the italic lower case. Do you think this works better?

Some of the new glyphs are a little rough around the edges, I've spent too little time on this.

I'll get back to your critique a little later, I have to spend an hour or two away from my laptop now.

eliason's picture

Wow, this is already so developed. Exciting work.

I have to say I'm not yet convinced that these italic minuscules can read as a family member with this roman. The broad-brush construction of those italics seems very at odds with the didone premise of the roman. The roman reminds me of Century (I consider that a compliment) so looking at its italics might be helpful for seeing what kind of matches are traditional. Of course I'm not saying you have to do what's been done before just because it's been done; but there's a real divide between broad-brush/broad-nibbed pen forms and engraved/split-nib pen forms, and I think straddling across that divide with one typeface family might be quite difficult. (Did this divide come up in that recent italics thread that Nina started?)

These alphabets are all very nice, so maybe you should reinvent a different italic for this roman and a different roman for this italic! Or maybe see it through and prove me wrong - I think this match looks improbable but it may not be impossible.

Some smaller-scale reactions:

Overall your proportions are sure and your drawing is handsome.
I'm envious of the curves of all your S's.
Roman g is particularly nice and roman j is very well done.
Did you consider more substantially bracketing the serifs on your thins? (southwest of AMNX; northeast of KNUXY and perhaps roman kvwxy)
Descenders of italic p and q are wonderful.
Tail of roman and italic Q may be a bit too black.
Top of roman c overhangs. Perhaps italic c, too, though I always find that letter difficult to judge.
Thin stroke of roman Xx and italic X looks unaligned and rather spindly, especially at the bottom.
Bowl coming into the stem at bottom of roman p looks weak. Perhaps same thing at top intersection of roman b and d.
Maybe lower the crossbars of roman and italic F's.
Italic s looks upside down.
Can the whites eat a little more into the center of the asterisk - it looks quite a bit too dark relative to the arms.
Roman and italic C and italic G: lower serif looks broken off.
You could extend the right side of P's lower serif for balance's sake.
I would make the terminal serif at the top of your S's (and roman s) lower relative to the top curve. Similarly, the top of q's stem could be lowered relative to the top of its bowl.

Hope that helps.

eliason's picture

Maybe what you have here is Schola Italic!

Sindre's picture

Maybe what you have here is Schola Italic!

My thoughts exactly! (after an hour of deep existential crisis). Of course, it has to be remade, but it'll be a good starting point.

Thank you very much for your thorough critique and your encouraging words, Craig. I hadn't thought of the similarity with Century (a typeface I too happen to like, but I seem to be unable to use it to good effect, for some reason. It's better in metal, I think), but you're right. In fact, this is the first time I've drawn glyphs without looking extensively at other typefaces, I just tried to draw letters the way I want them to look, to put it naïvely. I agree with all your criticism, although I want roman c to overhang just a little, while e should "underhang" (er ... what's the word?) ever so slightly. I'll make it less visible.

I happen to like that broken C serif, but since you and Ben both found it weird, I guess I'll have to do something about it. I'll try and strengthen the thins by increasing the brackets, as you suggested, but I think the difference should be subtle.

Ben, I changed the proportions of hkm on your suggestion, do you think I got it right? I also de-weirdified the top of the t, bevelled the zeds, darkened the y, fattened the r and the G.

And yes, I dig Coline.

Tomorrow, I'll update Mondegreen Roman following Craig's suggestions, and start on the new italic. The old one is archived along with your comments. Schola Roman and Italic will be my next project, after I've completed Mondegreen.

Thanks again for your fantastic help and support, Craig and Ben!

Sindre's picture

These are the first few glyphs of the new Mondegreen Italic. Thanks again for steering me in the right direction, Nina, Craig and Ben. It was quite hard getting started, I had to look at a lot of italics, but mainly Century's. That was a very helpful suggestion, Craig.

Do you think I'm on the right track? (I don't want to draw another dysfunctional companion for the roman.)

eliason's picture

Right track, I think.
Your slanted verticals break in and out of curves too suddenly (or, they are straight for too long). You need less of this:

and more of this:

Sindre's picture

Thanks! That's a great way of putting it -- you should teach type design. I'll inject some snake venom to the curves.

eliason's picture

you should teach type design

I should probably finish a font first! ;-)

Sindre's picture

Well, Jan Tschichold was a great teacher, and he didn't finish many fonts, did he? Most of his early attempts are even rather dreadful.

Is this snaky enough, do you think?

eliason's picture

That's an improvement!

I had the hardest time building these kinds of strokes for Emi Italic, so I'm looking forward to learning from watching your process...

Miss Tiffany's picture

This is off the top of my head. I'd have to see it all in context to know. But, I wonder if there couldn't be some different rules in place to keep all three of those tails from being the same. I for instance. IF a curve leads into the tail then only x-length or IF tail follows a stem then y-length?

I only say this because that sure creates quite a pattern. Won't that lead to too much sparkle?

Sindre's picture

Yes, I've been thinking about that too, Tiffany, but I haven't quite figured out a solution yet. I think I will draw the entire lowercase with identical tails and top serifs, and modify them later. I fell a little like stumbling in the dark on this, it is quite different from anything I've drawn before.

Your rule suggestion seems like a very sensible one, that's the first thing I'm going to try. Thank you very much!

Sindre's picture

[...] these kinds of strokes for Emi Italic

I can't find that typeface by searching for it, was it up for critique here?

nina's picture

Sindre, Craig's Emi is here:

This thread is highly interesting to follow!

Sindre's picture

Thanks, Nina. I'm looking forward to read it -- tomorrow. Some sleep are very needed now.

Here's the result of tonight's work, 12 glyphs of the new Mondegreen Italic, alongside with their roman companions. This is hard, but fun. Am I getting closer?

nina's picture

"Some sleep are very needed now."
Uh, oh. :->

"Am I getting closer?"
Well I'm not sure I have italic-fu, but I think this is sweet! And definitely a much closer relative of the roman now (whose controlled spikiness I admire BTW – that is one sweet "b").

eliason's picture

You're on the right track, no question!

Paul Cutler's picture

Latin glyphs suck! :)


Sindre's picture

I assume you mean that my roman letters are no good, as every glyph I've drawn so far is part of the Latin alphabet? Well, I guess I have to remake my romans as well, then.

Quincunx's picture

I really like the first brush-like italics, but I agree with others that it didn't fit with the didone style of the roman. It feels more like something that belongs to a renaissance like serif typeface (in other words, keep it and use it for some other project!).

The italics in your last image and in the 'nilo' image are working much better. Regarding the last image, I think the right arch of the 'm' could be slightly wider, the 'h' might be a bit narrow (looks narrower than the 'n', should optically look the same I think). I also think the 'p' needs something on the descender... a serif or something else. The 'r' might be slightly too wide, the ear is quite prominent...

Oh, and the romans don't suck at all.

Sindre's picture

Thanks, Jelmar, I've followed your advice on h, m, and r. I want to avoid serifs on the p and q descenders, if at all possible, so I've strengthened and tapered them a little.

I'm almost finished with the italic lower case now, only k, x and z missing. Will post a new pdf and png when finished, possibly tonight, if I manage to stay awake another hour or so.

Nina, thanks for your encouraging words! I've spiked a few italic glyphs too, but I'm afraid to overdo that aspect of this typeface.

eliason's picture

Sindre, did you happen to see the preview of John Hudson's Brill italics?
PDF here (linked from this thread.
He's matching more flowy italics to a transitional roman.

Sindre's picture

Yes, I saw it. Very interesting indeed. But his romans and italics match much better than mine did.

Here's an update, pdf and png. Please ignore upper case italics, I haven't done anything with them. Lower case italic x and z not drawn, I need a little break now.

eliason's picture

lowercase italics notes:
a, d, g, p, q - bottom thin of bowl looks bent (p is worst)
b - very nice
c, e - I rather like the small aperture. Does the tail straighten out too much at the end?
f - took too much off the slant angle? I'd have to see it in a text setting to judge
g, q - I like that spiky finial (is that the right word?). Reminds me of a certain Type ID Pop Quiz!
h - right vertical looks too "pipe" ish
j - descender looks pinched where curve starts
k - might the right side of this be a bit overcomplex?
m - second counter too narrow relative to first
o - quite nice
r - stem gets awfully thin (true in roman too)
s - charming. Something a little Ernestine-ish about it!
t - looks like it leans forward?

Sindre's picture

Thank you very much, Craig! I believe you're right in everything you wrote, and will correct my drawings accordingly. I think I've become temporary type-blind, I have spent far too many hours gazing at beziers the last couple of weeks. Is it only me, or do all you type designers work nonstop for countless hours? This can't be healthy.

Anyway, I'm really impressed by your Emi. (What's the story behind that name, by the way?) I haven't read the whole thread yet, but I will do. Your way of working is very different from mine (much more organised), I'm envious of your ability to quickly draw a bunch of alternates. I hope you'll find time to finish the typeface, this really needs to be published.

nina's picture

You seem exhausted, Sindre. You might need to go outside [more often] and look at things that don't have letters on them :-)
FWIW, I've found that taking complete breaks (in one case with Ernestine, as long as seven–eight weeks) can be extremely beneficial in terms of "seeing" my own design again – and then also having the energy again to jump into the work.

And your roman glyphs don't suck :)

Sindre's picture

You're right, Nina. Thanks for taking care of me ;-)
I haven't done much today, but after a long and refreshing walk in the woods, I drew those two missing basic italic glyphs. The z was a major headache, no idea if this one works. New pdf up top, with some text settings. Upper case italic is not finished at all, I'll redraw most of the letters. Rather leisurely.

Changes in roman:
New r. That glyph is turning into a problem child. Is this new one any better?

Changes in italic:
c opened slightly up, softer and a little shorter tail
adgpq bowls now has smoother join to stem
All descenders made a little shorter, they were a little too long compared to the roman
All (?) ball terminals fiddled with
f slants more
j straightened
new k (better?)
adjusted m bowls
new r
taller and straighter t
some tweaking on v and w
x and z drawn

And that carnivorous retro-sci-fi inkblob thingy is slightly more eaten by white now.

EDIT: I forgot to say that the spacing is still very basic, and kerning as good as nonexistent.

eliason's picture

With that rounded sharp counter at the top of roman r, could it eat a bit into the stem, too? - compare the bottom intersection of roman p. I think that would rectify the thickening of the stem there and the slight pinchedness that remains with the arm. (BTW when I said "stem" in my last comment about your r's, I should have said "arm" :-\).

With the shortened italic descenders, do the ball terminals (gjy) come up too high? (Otherwise j is improved.) g's bowl is somehow looking a touch too tall and narrow to my eyes now; perhaps q's too.

I might take off a bit off the slant of italic y. Maybe italic g too?

Perhaps k's new leg flares a little much for this font, but I think the concept is improved.

I think italic t could be even taller.

Is the kink in the left curves of italic v and w intended?

Italic x has the right concept. I wonder if you can get a little more white into the small counters top and bottom, especially bottom (i.e. raising the highest point of that triangular counter).

That italic z is cool. It's maybe too black at the southwest, but maybe a little inktrap in that acute counter will suffice to lighten it.

Amazing work, keep it up.

Thanks for your kind words and encouragement about Emi (which is named after my daughter). I'm certainly committed to finishing it, though I'm currently enjoying one of those hiatuses (hiati?) that Nina was preaching about. Ambicase has monopolized my FontLab time of late. When I get back to Emi I hope you will join the critics who have helped so much so far.

Sindre's picture

Thanks again, Craig.

I've done quite a lot of polishing on the italic.

Upper case is now a proper upper case. I've maintained my initial idea of avoiding all swashiness, the only glyph to differ structurally from its roman counterpart is G, that spike just doesn't look good slanted. Curve compensation is darned hard, and italic verticals is even trickier to get right than roman verticals, I've now learnt. Please tear it apart.

All lower case thin stroke terminals are strengthened slightly.
Descenders are made a little airier, and descending glyphs slightly uprighted.
g bowl is wider and shorter.
k is less flamboyant.
mnh is a little smoother on the right side.
r is redrawn: Shorter ink trap, more substantial arm, slightly higher ball.
t now reaches towards the heavens.
u is narrower and generally tweaked.
vw is de-kinked.
x is airier.
y is narrower and slightly deslanted.
z has a lighter bottom, and slightly shorter top.

I hope you will join the critics who have helped so much so far.
I will.

New pdf attached.

Spacing still sucks, like my roman.

eliason's picture

It's such a handsome glyph that I hate to say it, but, italic s: it's a bit of a misfit in context of your other italic letters. (Look at it in the word "phrase".) I think it's too tightly wound. Perhaps raise the top terminal and lower the bottom one?

I think italic u now looks too narrow.

italic z may be wide.

Add the italic caps to your specimen! From the .png, the thins look very thin, esp. the diagonal ones (AVWX), relative to the other thinner parts of letters (and relative to the serifs, even).

The outer contour of the bowls of italic gqa looks a little deflated to me at the northwest? (Most noticeable in g)

Sindre's picture

Er, some upload problem. New pdf up top now.

nina's picture

So wait, the new PDF is the one that looks like the image you just posted, just that one page? In that case there is no "t".
I'd love to see it in text too; I'm suspecting some weight issues (for instance the "a" looks like it *might* be a hint too dark) but I for one can't tell for sure by staring at huge glyphs.

Salt ready?

I like that little pimple of a spur on the "G". (No, really, that sounded worse than intended!)

"W"/"V"/"A" look too slanted to these eyes. Maybe a case for optical correction? But maybe a case for more sleep on this end.

"C"'s curve looks like it's trying to resist the slant – top of glyph looks wider than bottom.

I'd move the foot of the "K" out, it looks a bit unstable. "X" too.

"R"'s foot has a sudden brushiness that's not found anywhere else (or I can't see it). I'd make it harder, probably.

"j" still rocks. "k" is very cool – I'll be curious to see how it behaves in text.
And I'm envious of your "s"!

"f" is very retro in its ornateness… maybe a bit too emphatic, but that's also something to be looked at in context I guess.

Spike on "g" is very sexy. And on the "q".

I wasn't sure about the seriflessness of "p"/"q" descenders, but that light flare is great!

This is going to be a really really nice font. Absolutely keep it up! :)

Sindre's picture

Thanks, Nina. Yes, the italic caps obviously need more work. I think I'm starting to hate italic caps, they're just too hard to draw. And I don't even like them, those bastards (in the right sense of the word) are just not suited to italic slant. I agree with all your criticism. Will try and fix that blasted upper case tomorrow.

I'm afraid I've already redrawn that s slightly, following Craig's advice. (For some reason, I don't find drawing s-es very difficult, I have greater trouble with those at the end of the alphabet. And ampersands, that's sheer murder.)

I insist on serifless p and q, as I want my lower case to be a pure italic, z being the only half-exception. And while I agree that f is slightly over-the-top in its roccoco-tendencies, I really want to keep it more or less as is, as it's based on the design of the f-holes of my beloved double bass.

I'll upload some new text-settings after I've worked more on the upper case, done some spacing, and some very basic kerning.

Thanks for liking my typeface! I'll definitely keep working on this till it's finished (if a typeface ever gets finished).

Sindre's picture

Adjusted agq, wider u, looser s, first appearance of taller t, redrawn z. Thanks again, Craig! Your criticism is invaluable.

Sindre's picture

Or is this z better? I've also cut a notch in the top of the a stem, addressing Nina's concern of that glyphs body weight.

nina's picture

"I insist on serifless p and q, as I want my lower case to be a pure italic"
So where is it written that "pure" italics don't have terminals on "p" and "q"?
(I'm not trying to be facetious – I'm curious where that comes from.)

"I really want to keep it more or less as is, as it’s based on the design of the f-holes of my beloved double bass"
Ah, now that you mention it, it does look like an f-hole.
Well nothing against the f-holes of your beloved double bass, but I do hope you make that decision based on whether the "f" works within this particular font, or not. This is supposed to be a text font right? I don't guess your double bass would be all that happy if the "f" it inspired ends up tripping readers…

Sindre's picture

So where is it written that “pure” italics don’t have terminals on “p” and “q”?

Ah, absolutely nowhere (that I'm aware of). What I meant, was that I don't want to introduce serifs unlike the other lower case terminal on these two descending glyphs only, just because that's the way it's normally done. I should never have used that adjective.

I do hope you make that decision based on whether the “f” works within this particular font

That's a piece of good advice. I realise I have a tendency to make things (not just typefaces) from the top to the bottom, by imposing strict or arbitrary rules on the matter, and then by force make it work (or convincing myself that it works). But then again, I think a "f" like this could work. Extensive text settings will answer that.

[...] did I really say something about the weight of the “z”?

You didn't. The sentence that led to your confusion should have read like this: I’ve also cut a notch in the top of the "a" stem. From now on, I'll take up your good practice of putting glyph names in quotes.

I was very tired (blasted insomnia!) when I wrote those last two comments, and my accuracy level obviously rather appalling.

nina's picture

Heh, I did realize briefly after posting that you were talking about the "a" and not the "z" – I had misread that. I hear you on the insomnia… but yeah, quotes help.

"then again, I think a “f” like this could work"
Oh absolutely, I wasn't meaning to say it doesn't, just that it'll need testing. I'll be curious too.

Sindre's picture

Numerals for the roman, first draft. These are deliberately rather plain and unornamented, I'm not too fond of ball terminals on numerals, as Didones often have. Can they still work?

Sindre's picture

As Nina rightly pointed out, "R" is slightly out of character. Here's a new one. I've tried to make a relation to the "Q" tail, and I made the bowl slightly smaller. Is this any good?

Bendy's picture

>Is this any good?
I love it, very attractive.

The numerals: they're quite unexpected, which could be a good thing or not, I don't know. Could you set them in text so we can judge better? I think you could have a few slabs here and there, if you don't like balls?

eliason's picture

On the figs, they are very handsome. It's be helpful to see a setting alongside text to judge their fitness. I'd probably wonder about three the most, it might look a little too contemporary somehow? Stem of one looks a bit too fat and six looks like it's overreaching. Zero is interesting, is that contrast pattern something you've seen before?

The whole leg of the new R might be pulled out a bit, but the concept works pretty well.

Sindre's picture

Thanks, guys!

Numerals in context. I've slimmed down the "1" stem a little, is it too thin now? The "6" ascender is more modest now, and I've introduced the slightest hint of a curve to the "7" stem.

Zero is interesting, is that contrast pattern something you’ve seen before?

Er, I thought so, but I can't find any other zeros looking quite like that.

nina's picture

I like the numerals. "7" is pretty snazzy, I like the not-quite-reversed contrast. Agree with Craig the zero is interesting. I don't think I've seen such a zero before.

One thing I'm a bit confused about is the "5" – it's sexy, but it seems more oldstyle in its slimness/elegance than the other numerals, especially in contrast with the "3", which is very round/"full-bodied"/sturdy, like the "8" et al. Dunno, maybe it's just me.
The bottom-left of "2" looks a bit fragile, like the join in the "3" – maybe that thinnest point is a bit too thin/pointy, compared to your alphabetic glyphs?

(BTW, I think the "R" is better now.)

eliason's picture

Stylewise I think they'll work nicely. I wonder if they bounce around a bit too much - you might consider a taller "x-height" and/or shorter ascenders/descenders.

edit: Agree with Nina about the five.

edit 2: Sorry moving posts out of order. I think Nina's hybrid comment referred to mine above.

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