Font Aid VI: Aster Affects

The Society of Typographic Aficionados is organizing Font Aid VI: Aster Affects — a project uniting the typographic and design communities to raise funds for Red Cross relief efforts after the events of Hurricane Sandy.

The project theme will be represented in a typeface consisting entirely of asterisks.

Why the asterisk?

An asterisk can denote something that requires attention — and an event of this magnitude and impact certainly deserves some attention. The asterisk can also provide *emphasis* to important information amidst fields of plain text. The root of the word comes from the Greek astēr or “star” - signifying hope and light. In computer terms, it’s a wildcard character … and hurricanes are certainly wild and unpredictable.

This submission deadline is Saturday, November 17th, 2012.

See the submission guidelines for more information.

Thanks in advance for your help.

— Grant

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

Ashton Kutcher Affects?

5star's picture

Awesome! I'll try to have something done...

n.

Mel N. Collie's picture

So, you want the asterisks to descend and fill the em, as opposed to a normal asterisk sized and aligned for cap/ascenders, with a normal proportion (25% of the em), below the baseline.

Have I got that right?

hrant's picture

In practice they [have to] scale everybody's work anyway.

Great idea BTW - I'm on it too!

hhp

brockfrench's picture

This glyph from an unfinished typeface immediately came to mind; from my typically abundant artboard flotsam...

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

how does making an all asterisk font help Sandy victims exactly?

hrant's picture

Did you read the history?

The money from sales of the font goes to help the victims.

hhp

5star's picture

Nice one Brock!

Here's mine (although still in tweakage mode), I hope my lighting bolt theme is acceptable...

n.

sgh's picture

brockfrench, that's a sweet asterisk! I particularly like the way that there are two implied rotated squares sitting on top of each other, creating tension between the rigidity of the squares and the fluidness of the arms.
5star, I like the lightning bolts in your design. I also picked up on the storm theme, using raindrops in my asterisk. I also made a version where one of the "petals" is an extra big raindrop pouring out. Which do people like better?


brockfrench's picture

Thanks Neil, Stephen; looking good.
It's going to be interesting to see the variations in the number of points on all of these asterisks.

riccard0's picture

Stephen (sgh), the asymmetrical one is more interesting, and in my opinion the better idea too. It would need a bit of tweaking, though. Maybe you can make a progression in size of the drops.

ebensorkin's picture

I like the top one just fine... Maybe submit both and let them sort it out.

riccard0's picture

Chris Lozos posted his contribution on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dezcom/8173484241

Grant Hutchinson's picture

“Ashton Kutcher Affects?”

@ryan — Good lord, I hope not.

“So, you want the asterisks to descend and fill the em […] Have I got that right?”

@david — Yes, that’s correct. We’ll be treating the asterisks more like dingbats than their typographically correct parents. However, since we’re producing the final face as OpenType, we could provide a stylistic set which sizes and positions the glyphs as per usual … I kind of like that idea, actually.

To everyone else, thanks for participating.

The examples you’ve shown so far are wonderful.

Keep it up!

This Machine Floats's picture

Hi all, this is my first post.
I saw some submissions on twitter and I'd like to contribute.

I made this for my twitter and forum avatars, would this be acceptable?

hrant's picture

It's very pretty, and meaningful.

The narrow gaps might suffer at small sizes.

hhp

John Lyttle's picture

I submitted this one to SoTA. I read a note on Wikipedia that said the original asterisk had seven arms. Citation is apparently needed to back up that claim, but it got me wondering how a seven-armed glyph would look.

Cole's picture

Here's what I submitted:

And here's what I said:
I had the great fortune of living in New York City this past summer while I studied type at Cooper Union's Type@Cooper program. Like many people, the city is full of my friends and family. When I think about Hurricane Sandy, I am brought to the idea of 'balance.' It has affected the balance of so many people's lives and daily routines. And, the hurricane itself was brought on by a great imbalance in our climate. Many of those affected will return to their 'normal' quickly, while others will have to find a completely new balance. My asterisk was based off of an 'unbalanced' rectangle, repeated 6 times.

dezcom's picture

Thanks for noticing, Riccardo!
Here are the two variations:

russellm's picture

vortex

It started off as an asterisk. Then it was sucked up and spit back out by this great big gritty giant vortex.

russellm's picture

@ This Machine Floats;

nice!

timd's picture

I see Fleurons of Hope has gone from Myfonts, which is a shame.

Still, keep up the good work.

Tim

dezcom's picture

Russel,
I know you are WAY too young to have ever seen one of these but your design above brought back warm memories of my teenage record collection:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/45_rpm_adapter

:-)

timd's picture

…with a touch of Woolmark, one of my all time favourites.

Tim

russellm's picture

I certainly am not way to young to remember playing stax-o-45 RPM wax on the hi-fi with the funny plastic thingies in the middle.

I just act that way, Chris.

:o)

dezcom's picture

You are young at heart then, Russell :-)

hrant's picture

hhp

Vertex's picture

Here’s what I will contribute: one six-pointed and one-eight pointed asterisk based on a wood type star found in the »Morgan Press Specimen Book 1964«!

timd's picture

Tim

dezcom's picture

Good one, Tim!

riccard0's picture


Here's mine.
Please bear with me, so little time, so incompetent at Illustrator.

Ciotóg's picture

The rough for my asterisk design. I wanted to play on the idea of rebuilding. Thoughts?

the_edventure's picture

Hi everyone - happy to participate in my 3rd Font Aid. Here's what i'm submitting tonight. Seen some interesting stuff. Look forward to seeing all of them.. Ed [Ziss Design]

Thomas Phinney's picture

I'm taking votes on which of my three attempts is best. Not really very themed, though. :/

http://blog.extensis.com/fonts/asterisk-font-aid-vi-hurricane-sandy-reli...

hrant's picture

The one on the left.

hhp

brockfrench's picture

Middle one.

5star's picture

The one on the right.

n.

5star's picture

Here's my other...

n.

brockfrench's picture

Neil... maybe a bit too on the nose...

5star's picture

Ya perhaps so Brock, more cathartic than anything really.

n.

Vertex's picture

@Thomas Phinney .. the one on the right! – Why don’t you submit all of them?

timd's picture

Chris, thank you.

Cole, I enjoy the discord and simplicity.

Thomas, centre – (axe head over spear).

Tim

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

After this can we do a Font Aid to have Israel leave Palestine the hell alone?

karenparry's picture

Thomas - the one on the right :)

Jongseong's picture


I'm basing my submission on the Sumerian cuneiform sign dingir. Should I pick the outline or the filled version?

karenparry's picture

Here's what I submitted...
Abstracted frangipani asterisk:
Like Hurricane Sandy, the Frangipani (Plumeria) originates from tropical and subtropical Americas. When you twirl a single Frangipani flower into the air, it will whirl off like a flying spinning top until it hits land.

hrant's picture

Brian, nice. The filled one.

hhp

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

Thomas, these all look like shuriken to me.

Top 3 for me so far is:

dezcom
timd
the_adventure

(in no particular order)

brockfrench's picture

I like the filled one; how would it look rotated clockwise by one position.

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