Hexa - An experiment in textura

akos.polgardi's picture

I designed this typeface for a class assignment in school and would be grateful if you'd let me know what you think of it. I call it an experiment because of its rigorous construction principles: among other constraints, only vertical strokes are allowed to be thick, all angled strokes have one determined direction (N-E) and so on. I realize that such rigidity will never result in a highly legible typeface, but I was curious to see what comes out of it nevertheless.

Andreas Stötzner's picture

I think this is well beyond the stage of experiment. It looks like a very worthwhile exploration to me. It has not only merits as such but also high potential for an actual typeface. The legibility is perhaps better than one would suspect.
There are some witty ideas for details (s, k, ß), yet some tricky bits as well (accents, r_i, z).
I hope you’ll go on with it!

akos.polgardi's picture

Thanks for your kind words, Andreas. I certainly agree with you regarding the problematic points, most of all the case of 'r_e'. In fact, because of the huge white spot the 'r' creates in running text, I ended up design a ligature for every 'r-' combination, which is admittedly far from an optimal solution :)

hrant's picture

Actually I was going to say that the r-ligations are the best feature!
And in parallel, I would increase the number of gaps, like in the S/s;
think "texture"! Frankly without such "deviations" this would be too
mundane to be more than an educational exercise.

Also:
- I would increase the ascenders - it would help readability.
- This is crying out to be a bitmapfont too.

hhp

akos.polgardi's picture

Thanks a lot for your suggestions, hrant. The reason for not introducing more gaps was in fact closely related to the abundance of ligatures. As in most cases the 'r' (and sometimes the 'f') combines with its neighbour creating such a gap, having the characters already 'gapped' would generate serious diffculties. These compromises are, by the way, what I meant by 'far from optimal'. I should add though, that creating ligatures was a fun part.

Andreas Stötzner's picture

– consider the small r rotunda as an alternative?

akos.polgardi's picture

I never thought of that solution. Thanks for the suggestion, I'll make sure to include it as an alternate character.

Sindre's picture

Great potential. The 3d-effect of the alternating strokes gives an almost tactile sensation. Brilliant 'g'! S-es also great. Are you sure about the placement of the tittles and the diacritics? I think the proximity to the bodies looks off, but that might be a question of taste.

akos.polgardi's picture

Hi Sindre, you're absolutely right about diacritics. I've spent very little time with them and they certainly don't integrate well into the font. In moments of despair I even considered using regular, circle-shaped dots for tittles :)

Sindre's picture

Hm... I'd consider short strokes, if I were you. Just start at ascender height, and make them as tall as needed.

Martin Silvertant's picture

Very nice work! I'm generally not a fan of such modernized blackletters but I think this one works very well in print—especially with the vertically textured paper you used.

As for the 'r', I very much like the r_e ligature but with combinations like r_d I don't think it works well. I was actually about to suggest using a rotunda r inspired solution but Andreas mentioned that already.

akos.polgardi's picture

Hi Martin, thank a lot, I'm glad you liked it and grateful for the suggestions.
I'm planning to continue working on the font in the future but I'm not sure when that will be, so I released a v1.0 today which can be downloaded from here. Thanks again to all of you for your helpful comments and let me wish you a Happy New Year.

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