check out - Ledger Regular - free font

Denis_Masharov's picture

Hi
I invite you to evaluate a my new font Ledger Regular )))
http://www.behance.net/gallery/Ledger-Regular/3261095

hrant's picture

Is it Letger or Ledger?

Especially with a "g" in the name it would have been nice
if the "g" didn't look like it was falling forward. Also, the
caps are too hefty. Next time consider taking advantage
of Typophile before you release.

hhp

Nick Shinn's picture

Melior, with all the life sucked out of it.

J. Tillman's picture

2. Be helpful, but be polite.

Further, if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. You may think you are offering "friendly" advice but your words say otherwise. It is one thing to give a fair critique, but if words such as "don't mean to be rude, but this is awful" or "obviously you have no experience" are part of what you wish to write perhaps just don't write anything. Silence is critique enough.

-- http://www.typophile.com/node/80883 Miss Tiffany

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Unsolicited (and often rude) criticism in this Release section is becoming a problem.

hrant's picture

> if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.
> Silence is critique enough.

I can't agree.
I don't think I myself was rude, but in my book being
harsh and honest is much better than pretending not
to notice or smiling vacuously.

Sometimes people have to really feel that they messed
up in order to improve. If you announce the release of
a sub-par font in the same place you could have gotten
some free help improving it, don't expect Flickr-style
vapid fawning.

hhp

Nick Shinn's picture

Yes, I was strong in my criticism, but an evaluation was asked for by the font’s designer, and I don’t consider my comment impolite—it is not ad hominem, but adresses the typeface.

Ledger is clearly derived from Melior, and watered down (a terrible thing to do, IMO).
The derivation is not acknowledged.

Surely this calls for opprobium?

Richard Fink's picture

Denis,

Since I don't care about how the font looks in print, my view is a bit different than what would ordinarily be gotten here at TP.

I like the way it came out as a web font. I'm not seeing the "too hefty" caps that hrant is talking about.
I like the way the numerals look, especially.

I like the extended character set, always handy to have.

I want to play around with the weight a little and see what happens.

Spacing needs some work, definitely.

Anyway, thanks!

Denis_Masharov's picture

@hrant - Ledger, of course, my error will be corrected, thank you. "the caps are too hefty" - not agree. )))

@Nick Shinn - Melior??? There is no comparison ))) I'm more oriented to the Swift )))

@Richard Fink - Spacing needs some work - definitely, need to work on this more. will be corrected, thank you!

@J. Tillman - it's ok ))))) I need a critique of it ))) I'm glad to hear all (it does not mean that I agree with all)

thanks to all )))

Denis_Masharov's picture

@hrant - Corrected. Once again - thank you for drawing my attention))
http://www.behance.net/gallery/Ledger-Regular/3261095

hrant's picture

See how many text fonts you can find where the caps
are the height of the ascenders... The very few you
will find will have caps that are either unusually
narrow or unusually light (strokes of thickness not
much more than the lc, unlike in your design). Does
Ledger have smallcaps? If not, try setting some text
with acronyms (like "NASA") and see how they totally
ruin the texture by jumping out...

BTW, I just noticed another big problem related
to vertical proportions: your descenders seem to
be longer than the ascenders; they're supposed
to be shorter - and this isn't dogma, there's a
very practical reason: descenders are far less
frequent than ascenders in actual text; giving
them more (or even equal) room basically wastes
vertical space.

In fact the claim that Ledger has a large x-height
does not seem to be true. That's not necessarily bad
news, since when it's too large readability suffers.

So here's the shortest path I can think of to fix the
two vertical proportion issues: make the ascenders
taller. If that makes the x-height too small for you,
then you have much more work on your hands...

Concerning Richard's onscreen angle: it's certainly
true that the lower fidelity of the screen can hide
a number of flaws... but fixing them won't make your
screen rendering worse! It will simply give better
results when somebody prints with your font. And if
anybody sets Ledger at a larger size onscreen* then
it benefits there too.

* Which could still be for text, like on the
hi-res display of the amazing new HTC One X.

BTW, what about your Cyrillic?

hhp

Denis_Masharov's picture

@hrant - You do not have to persuade me to agree with you )))
I understand your point of view, but did not agree with it.
"NASA" - I like how it looks ))))
"this isn't dogma" - No dogmas in design, there are only recommendations.
I did exactly as I like.
You have expressed your opinion, if I will need you to reasoning and justification - I will ask you about it.
At this moment, I still disagree with you, but not going to argue.
I am very grateful to you for your opinion. )))

hrant's picture

> I did exactly as I like.

Which is Art, not Design.
And this is probably at least part of the reason you
didn't post this to Typophile before it was too late.

BTW, you don't have to ask for help
to receive it, and benefit from it.

--

Something else:
Is this your first text typeface? Because the
"g", which is the most difficult Latin letter,
is very smooth* - in fact it's almost too good
for a first effort. Coupled with the ascenders
being too short, I have to ask: did you take
an existing font and shorten the ascenders to
the cap height? It wouldn't be the first time a
novice took an existing font and "normalized" it,
thinking they're making a valuable contribution.
But if my hunch is wrong, I apologize in advance.

* Notwithstanding the lean and that it
goes too low relative to the ascenders.

And just so we're clear: I'm not out to get you.
I just care about typographic integrity and quality,
as do most people who frequent Typophile, even
if they sometimes inadvisably equate silence with
criticism. :-)

hhp

Denis_Masharov's picture

@hrant -
"Is this your first text typeface" - No, you can find more on Google & MyFont )))
I'm going to show them all here later ))
"I apologize in advance" - apology accepted )) The font is drawn "from scratch"
"equate silence with criticism. :-)" -your opinion is very important and interesting, really, I not want you be silent.
Just in some subjects I have my opinion, which may not coincide with yours.
With this I agree, with what is not, and that's OK.))
Believe me, I'm not beginner in typography, and I know all that you explain. )))
Much of what you criticize, I did intentionally and especially, because I think - that it is better.
This is my opinion and I do not want anything prove to you and argue with you.
I rather hear you, think about this, and decide to accept or not. I do not want to argue.
Once again - thank you for your opinion, I hope in future you will speak and not be silent. )))

hrant's picture

OK.

But I really do believe that discussing things (not "arguing") is
an integral part of Design. Although maybe not in this thread.

hhp

Denis_Masharov's picture

"But I really do believe that discussing things (not "arguing") is an integral part of Design" - agree ))))))))
call me on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/denisuis

hrant's picture

1) I meant in public. More beneficiaries!
2) I don't have Facebook. Or a cellphone. :-)

hhp

Denis_Masharov's picture

don't have Facebook?????? )))))))
"Or a cellphone" - i'm in Moskow ))))
Ok, then watch out for my releases.
I'll be slowly put them here, accumulated a much, I recently started self promotion. )))

Té Rowan's picture

I rather like it. The way it sits on my screen reminds me of a Modern. Do I call it a neo-Modern? Sounds almost as queer as neo-Antiqua.

It's gotta be a weird cosmic something-or-other, but the town I live in has the nickname Little-Moscow.

Denis_Masharov's picture

@Té Rowan - Thank you. We (the residents of Moscow)) are always able to understand each other ))))))))

brianskywalker's picture

Denis, first of all, this typeface does show a lot of finish and I can see you put a great deal of work into it. Now to evaluate: the proportions of your ascenders and descenders really are way out of wack, you have to see it for what it is. How much consideration did you put into those proportions? I had made a similar mistake with my proportions for Neuton, which I have attempted to correct in later versions.

The ascenders are much too short. Being at cap height, unless done extremely well, makes the illusion that the ascenders are actually lower than the capitals. It can work, but only rarely. I recommend you raise the ascenders at least as much as the height of the serifs.

The descenders are also too low, especially in comparison with the ascenders. I would consider moving the descenders up enough to achieve more unity in form. The top stroke of the loop of the /g/ probably wants to rest on the baseline.

I hope what I've said helps you. Also note that it's really not too late to make a correction such as this, considering the nature of Google fonts: 1) The approach tends to lead toward progressive development, so little improvements are welcomed and encouraged. 2) People already using the font will get all of those little improvements automatically. You should be able to adjust the ascenders and descenders relatively easily. As long as you make sure not to change the body size of the font (which should already be bigger than the height of ascenders & descenders to account for accent marks), there will be no reflow of text. :)

One final note, you should reconsider your /r/ a bit—there's a large gap on the bottom right. I would recommend shortening the length of the arm and making the bottom right stem serif a little longer. :)

Hope this helps!

hrant's picture

> People already using the font will get all of those little improvements automatically.

Interesting point.

hhp

brianskywalker's picture

Oh, and I do agree that it looks a bit like Melior with all the life sucked out of it. That is not bad at all, in my opinion, as "blandness" can become useful for many typographic situations. Also there are a lot of other differences and this is clearly not a straight-up Melior copy, but a new interesting work. Some of the caps are a little heavy, which you might want to address, however this is a common trait of the Didone classification, which Ledger borders on. You just might want to unify the weight of some of the caps, for instance the /L/ looks a whole lot lighter than the /R/. :)

Denis_Masharov's picture

@brianskywalker - Thanks for review.

I will try to carefully consider all of the accumulated observations.

" not too late to make a correction such as this" - totally right.
I'm already doing version 2 for some of my fonts on Google - with changes and improvements.
comes the turn of the Ledger.

rememberbooks's picture

Perhaps this might be a work-alike substitute for Melior or an "inspired by," but there are numerous distinctive features which make it very hard to argue it's derivative. There is no resemblance whatever between the two fonts' UC Q. The tail of the LC e in Melior is a rounded widening; Ledger has a hook-like terminus, almost a serif. The bowl of Melior's LC a shoots straight back; Ledger's droops. The spur on the LC p and b is pointed; the equivalent part of Melior's letters stick straight back. The 3s don't match at all, Legdger's 6 has a different width, the angle of the 7 downstrokes don't match. The crossbar on Ledger's UC A is much lower. (I hadn't run out of differences when I got tired of comparing.) They're both the Latin alphabet, yes; but they're no more similar than hundreds of other distinct faces in any big vendor's catalog. Looks to me like Ledger is shaping up as a fine-looking face. I don't have suggestions for improvements, but it seems there are obvious reasons to challenge the charge of derivative work.

brianskywalker's picture

Richard (rememberbooks), your argument that it is totally unlike Melior based on details doesn't make sense. It was because of the initial impression and overall feel that one makes the connection with Melior. My font Neuton is similar to Times New Roman, but the details are totally different. Yet it still gives an initial impression of Times. Honestly there are reasons one would use Ledger over Melior, or vice-versa.

rememberbooks's picture

We are really much closer to saying many of the same things than your reply suggests. First, I thought I had pretty clearly indicated in my earlier and shorter post (1) that many different Latin fonts resemble (my "catalog" remark), and (2) that as a possible "work-alike" or "inspired by" face, Ledger certainly does give an overall page impression more comparable to Melior, certainly less than to Century Schoolbook, ITC Garamond, Storm Lido, or any Didone. So, I never said or tried to imply that Ledger was totally unlike Melior, quite the opposite. Are you with me so far? We both agree the two faces resemble. Same opinion. You say my reasons for stating they don't resemble "don't make sense," but I was not suggesting they don't resemble. I was making a different point entirely ...

Second, my main point is that overall page impression does not in any way support calling it a derivative work. Nick's original post did not use that term, but his follow-up 29 Feb 2012 — 12:55pm did. Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't "derivative" mean the designer basically started with one design, made changes, and ended with the other? (To clarify, I'm not talking about illegally copying code, only working from an image or impression of a pre-existing design. The details I cited strongly suggest to me that this designer started from scratch, not that he began with some Melior-like drawings and adapted that alphabet. We may agree on that, too.)

Now, the overall impact of his glyphs may have ended up resembling Melior, and that is entirely fine. That doesn't make them derivative. Their not being derivative is my whole point, my only point. That the details support. I wouldn't have commented but for the use of that word, and the fact that he said such derivative work "calls for opprobirum." Had he only said "similar to " or "evocative of" or "kind of like," there'd have been no issue. You even seem to say something similar with your statement, "Honestly there are reasons one would use Ledger over Melior, or vice-versa," too. So, again, it appears we agree rather than differ. I hope you don't think it's right to condemn a designer or a typeface because it somewhat resembles another.

Finally, having hopefully clarified those things on which we seem to have agreed, I believe my points in support of what I said do make sense. If your own font, which you say "gives an initial impression of Times," is not a "derivative" face which "calls for opprobrium," then it seems you would now also agree my reasons for not calling Ledger derivative make sense, too. I would expect you to rightfully object if someone said your face Neutron was an adaptation of Times, or a derivative of Times, simply because the two alphabets resemble. I'm certain you don't believe you or your font should be condemned because it resembles Times in some ways.

I've got no dog in this hunt. I love staring at good type; but I definitely don't have the skills to design a font. I probably don't even have the skills to digitize one which had been beautifully drawn by a competent artist and handed to me on a platter. I don't mean to make my remarks personal, only to clearly call for clarity. I thought I made a worthwhile, on-topic point, reasonably. I still do. But if that didn't happen, I'll let it drop. There's bound to be something more valuable to do.

brianskywalker's picture

Sorry about the misunderstanding! Sometimes I have trouble getting what I mean across. I was not trying to disagree with your conclusion, just how you explained it—because someone could have just taken Melior's outlines and changed those details you mentioned, and it would have been a direct derivative.

Nick Shinn's picture

If the similarity is a coincidence, that’s hardly less excusable than derivation, as Melior is an important type designed by Hermann Zapf, which a type designer should be aware of, and dissociate from, if only to avoid giving the impression that the new type is superficial.

There’s nothing wrong with a clever serif treatment, but its relationship with the underlying architecture of the face is important.

Denis_Masharov's picture

The funny thing is - I do not even take into account the Melior in this work. ))))))
I am pleased with the comparison - Melior font is a wonderful.
But even in the picture by Nick visible a big difference.
Melior is much more monospaced, it forms more quadratic.
All antiqua from one class can be called "derivatives" - Venetian Garalds, modern Didons, english transient - Times & Neutron. )))
When I began work on the Ledger, I was assigned task - a modern serif (Swift like), powerful brutal serifs and legs, but with higher contrast and lightweight softened forms, to improve the perception.

sim's picture

[Track]

Té Rowan's picture

That may be why Nick likens Ledger to a 'lifeless' Melior – it's not as quadratic or superelliptic or something.

Nick Shinn's picture

All antiqua from one class can be called "derivatives"

However, Melior is not a class, it is a fairly recent typeface (in the 500-year time span of still-used serif styles) with a strong and individual personality.

Here we enter the realm of taste and discretion.
It’s OK for type designers to “tweak” established genres, but not typefaces.
Who are the snobs who have established this convention?
I’m just saying.

I repeat the observation that the serifs of Ledger are a veneer: compare with Melior, in which the serif structure relates to the letter structure; but in Ledger the “powerful brutal” serifs are applied to a “softened” form. This is a poor premise—detail should play the same tune as structure.

Denis_Masharov's picture

@Nick Shinn -
I like the eclectic )))))
Sometimes mixing can give a good cocktail )))))))

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