Olduvai

aquatoad's picture

Hello Typophiles.

Attached is a fun side project I've had going. It a handlettered serif with gravy on top. The glyphs were drawn at 1cm high and digitized. There are some color issues with the smallcaps, but overall I was pleasantly surprised by the nice texture. If you can think of other fun addition to the set I'd love to extend it. It kinda reminds me of emigre's journal with a bit more tooth.

Enjoy,
Randy


application/pdf
Olduvai.pdf (327.4 k)

timd's picture

Nice Gravy, the italic especially, reminds me of Ealing Studios titling work and the pith helmet!
http://www.britmovie.co.uk/studios/ealing/filmography/71i.html

cerulean's picture

Delicious. Is the backward slant in the regular intentional? I would be tempted to rotate and/or skew most of the glyphs slightly to make it more upright.

aquatoad's picture

Delicious. Is the backward slant in the regular intentional?
Many people have accused me of being left handed after looking at my handrawn work. I'm not sure where the backslanting comes from. I will go through and rework the regular lc. There are also baseline/x-height issues in the italic to be addressed.

I was thinking a bit about doing a clean version (digitally remastered) keeping the funky quality, but with smooth curves. It would be included in the set. Thoughts on that? Or other comments?

Thanks
Randy

kakaze's picture

I love it, it's such a great face. The lowercase italics especially are quite nice!

I also think that it would be great with a rough version and a smooth one.

fontime's picture

It

kakaze's picture

I didn't notice the PDF until now.

This needs old style numbers!

tyleryoung's picture

This is beautiful work. So much character!

bertjan's picture

Beautiful, it reminds me of Letterror's Salmiak

pablohoney77's picture

We loves it! the backslant doesn't bother me, i think it adds more character. but i would add a pineapple. http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/83/26899.html?1077441434 (just messin)
Okay, on closer reading, the backslant is somewhat distracting in text but i still think it adds character if used strictly as a display face.

cerulean's picture

I too just noticed the PDF. Seeing it in a text setting, I don't think the backslant needs fixing at all, at least not in the lc. I think it would only look off when someone insists on setting it in allcaps.

pablohoney77's picture

LOL, it seems that Kevin and I are of diametrically opposed opinions. I would tend to fix the backslant for a text version and keep it for a titling version. But hey, it's yer baby!

fonthausen's picture

There should be more projects like yours! Keep on the good work.

--Jacques

Christian Robertson's picture

Randy,

Good stuff. I think a digitally remastered 'clean' version would be great. I would be interested to see how you handle 'keeping the funky quality'.

cr

aquatoad's picture

I think a digitally remastered 'clean' version would be great. I would be interested to see how you handle 'keeping the funky quality'.

That has me a bit worried, but I think it can be funky in the way that Biblon is funky. Even, yet uneven. BTW that font is Storm's most innovative (best?) in my opinion.

Stephen, if I saw your list before embarking I probably wouldn't have. :-) But thanks for the vote of confidence.

I will be adding a pineapple.

pablohoney77's picture

hooray for the pinapple! i think it should be a standard dingbat or ornament. I think this face is great, can't wait for it to be released. keep up the good work!

Grant Hutchinson's picture

Randy, this may be an obvious question, but... are your typefaces available commercially anywhere? Google has failed me, and I can't seem to track down a source.

aquatoad's picture

Stephen, is that any way to talk in mixed company?
Grant, google ain't broke you diplomat. At this time my fonts are ultra exclusive, meaning they are sitting on my hardrive in various states of completion. If you're interested let's chat off post (I think people are only allowed to have their pineapples picked publicly in Amsterdam.)

Randy

pablohoney77's picture

so maybe we'll see Olduvai soon on veer huh? well hopefully it's not too long!

Grant Hutchinson's picture

> 'm pretty sure Randy's pineapple is ripe for the picking.

Twitch. Twitch.

> so maybe we'll see Olduvai soon on Veer huh?

Let's just say that the volley and banter has begun.

aquatoad's picture

The following is the start of the remastered version. I'm not sure what to make of it. Right now it is looking very close to the original. Probably too close. Anyways, thought I'd post it.

Randy


application/pdf
remastered.pdf (31.2 k)

hrant's picture

Way too regular. I don't think you should go for the weathered look, but I think this really needs a lot of the bounce preserved. Or you could have two styles: Docile and Wild - and no italics?

hhp

eomine's picture

Very nice, both versions (and I think the backslant should be fixed too).

Minor observation regarding the 'regular' version: the lowercase outlines are too rough (they even have tiny spikes)... I'd just soften them a little.

About the 'remastered' one: there are some color issues... like the 'i' looking darker than the 'el'.

aquatoad's picture

Hi all.

I've taken another look at the regular:
Backslant corrected, and some outline cleaning.

I've also filled out the initial cap and ornaments.
Very excited about those borders. More coming.

Randy


application/pdf
olduvai_revised.pdf (467.7 k)


hrant's picture

Great stuff, man. But I do think you've gone a hair too far correcting the backslant - to me this face seems to want no apparent slant at all.

BTW, love them hybrid nums.

hhp

Hildebrant's picture

I would buy it.

ebensorkin's picture

Me too. I want to buy it! I love the color on a page. Really inviting.

One quibble- I miss the old Q now. I see how you have put some characters in boxes & that version needs a shorter tail - but does the Regular 'Q'?

There is something Edward Gorey -ish about this font too. It's as if He was doing a book on being in India rather than Edwardian England.

I don't mean to take away from your originality at all. I love the lighthearted cheek put into the old forms with his writing & with your font. It makes a page it warm & human.

Too cool.

Could there be a font of alternates too?

aquatoad's picture

The Initial Caps and Ornaments set is what is shown at right above. The boxed initials occupy the cap spots and the regular initials occupy the lowercase spots. Both were intended to be used as drop caps it the beginning of a text (hence fitting them in a square). The un-boxed versions might do better as a swash cap set with a totally wild Q. I'll think about it. The regular Q is unchanged, not to worry.

I do think you've gone a hair too far correcting the backslant - to me this face seems to want no apparent slant at all.
I agree that it wants no slant at all. Was your observation based on looking at the paragraphs or at the detail at the bottom, or both? It was looking right to me.

BTW, love them hybrid nums.
Me too! Hybrids are in general, totally practical. They work in text, do fine tabular, great on a business card (where osf often struggle), and typographically caloused clients don't freak out the way the sometimes do over osf.

I think the new Australopithecus ornament lends an especially Edward Gorey element.

As a side note, the name Olduvai has less to do with any evolutionary interests, but more the crusty nature of the font combined with intesive immersion in The Far Side.

Cheers,
Randy

hrant's picture

> Was your observation based on ....

It was based on taking a "broad" look at a paragraph, where it "feels" slanted.

hhp

aquatoad's picture

Odd. I don't see it. Value you opinion though, so will take a further look. As I made the change there were some characters that were more backslanted than others, some just felt that way because the right leg was lifted (m,n). Are there any glyphs, word combinations or lines that particularly seem overly forward slanting now?

Thanks for taking the time.

Randy
BTW, here is a new border that will be included in the ornament set. It is based on some amazing Hmung textiles. Not much to do with the Olduvai/Archeology theme, but still it's fun to work on these. I'd like to add some handrawn cartouches and lettering scrolls.

hrant's picture

> Are there any glyphs, word combinations or lines that
> particularly seem overly forward slanting now?

I don't think so - at least I haven't looked closely enough to pinpoint any "problem glyphs". Since this is an inherently irregular design I don't think that would be very relevant anyway. I'd say that the overall forward slant is about 1/2 a degree (like Syntax).

BTW, that border reminds me of the background on Karen Huang's blog (which makes some sense).

hhp

NvdK's picture

Hello Randy
I love the font you made.
The borders and Initials are fabulous.

Nicolien

aquatoad's picture

Here are some scrolls to add to the mix.
Nicolien, thanks and welcome to typophile.

hrant's picture

These are too good.

hhp

eomine's picture

Oh, yes. Very nice!

BTW, there's something odd with those boxed initials.
Maybe if you had the regular caps inside the boxes...?

aquatoad's picture

Maybe I'll add some twigs and a pheasant to the ones that have too much black (L, I, J,T,V,C) :-)
Lovely plumage!

bvfonts's picture

OMG! I LOVE IT!! This is totally something I wish I had designed.

Jordan Harper's picture

Wonderful work. The scrolls are too good to give away in a typeface ;-)

I was surprised by how good it looks in a text setting, very even, but uneven, if you know what I mean. Someone around here once said something about the deviations from an even colour being the most interesting thing about a typeface; and this deviates beautifully.

Great, inspiring work; congratulations.

Jordan

mrriddle's picture

Whatever this turns out to be. Do not keep it to yourself. I just finished a One-off commerative album/diary for the past president of CPA Australia and this font would have been the perfect one to use.

If this font ever makes the light of day please email me - I'll definitely be interested in purchasing!

This is one of those times where I wish I wasn't one of those half-arsed mac generation designers who knows what he would like to draw or letter but can't use a pencil. (Actually I probably could if I had the time to keep a pencil sharp and use it)

Grant Hutchinson's picture

> If this font ever makes the light of day please email
> me - I'll definitely be interested in purchasing!

Never fear. Olduvai will be released through Veer's Umbrella collection in June. More information will follow. I promise.

Daniel Poindexter's picture

Grant, you should think about picking up Chagrin and Eason, too, if that would make Randy finish them. ;)

pablohoney77's picture

i might akshully hafta break down and acutally purchase something from veer instead of just drooling over them nice glossy mags once this one hits the shelves. congrats randy! keep up the good work!

Grant Hutchinson's picture

> Grant, you should think about picking up Chagrin
> and Eason, too, if that would make Randy finish them.

I whole-heartedly agree.

Of course, there's Cuillere, Prodigal, Extra Wide Sans, and this lovely untitled piece of work as well. Randy and I have had discussions about many of his other works in progress. Olduvai is coming out first because - to be honest - it was the design which was the furthest along. I can't speak to what may be released next. I think that is something still kept under Randy's cap.

Daniel Poindexter's picture

Hmmm. Adding Eason and Prodigal could be very good for the Umbrella collection, as it seems a bit display heavy. Particularly with script faces. Cool.

Grant Hutchinson's picture

> Adding Eason and Prodigal could be very good for the
> Umbrella collection, as it seems a bit display heavy.

While this thread isn't really the proper forum for this topic, I will mention that we are adding more text faces to balance out the collection as we speak. For instance, a full blown OpenType version of Christian Robertson's long anticipated Pill Gothic will be coming out as part of Umbrella next month.

Daniel Poindexter's picture

This is all good news. I'm going to think long and hard about buying some of these releases. That's a big deal for me, since I am too po' to afford an "or".

pablohoney77's picture

hey grant, does veer do advance orders for us impatient types who want the product as soon as it becomes available? ;^)

Grant Hutchinson's picture

:-)

I'll let everyone know as soon as it's available in our system. Which will probably be before the end of May. The fact is... Randy's little disc of golden master love only dropped onto my desk yesterday. We still need to run the typeface through the Veer Supa Product Machine

pablohoney77's picture

congrats on yer work getting "published," randy! is this yer first?

aquatoad's picture

Paul: Yup.

Grant: I recommend a safety monacle and some earl grey when operating The Machine

Grant Hutchinson's picture

... and always floss between kern pairs.

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