Light Extended Sans

Simon SweeneySimon Sweeney Posts: 3
edited December 2015 in Type Design Critiques
Hello everyone!

New to this forum although frequented Typophile every now and then out of general interest while it was up and running. 

Myself and my partner @Shauna Buckley have a keen interest in typography and type design and in an effort to learn more have started drawing admittedly amateur letterforms. At this stage we’re mainly working for our own enjoyment and in the hopes of improving.

This is our first attempt, purely an exercise in drawing the forms, any and all feedback would be appreciated. Thanks!




Comments

  • /I/i/l/ can be narrow but I think /t/ and /f/ need to be wide. 
  • I dig a lot of this but there are too many ideas going on. An art deco squircular neogrotesque version of Eurostile is too much to process.

    The arches in the top and bottoms of the a shape are too symmetrical and kind of dull. Bring the lower arch up where it connects to the stem.

    The way the tails of g and y almost touch the bowls creates unsightly dark spots.

    f and t are narrow and r is wide. 

    C and G feel like the came from another font. Make them less 1957ish and more Philco superellipsy. The crossbar on G is about twice as wide as it needs to be and it sits a little too high.

    Lower the crossbars on A and B. This isn't an art deco typeface.

    This isn't a UI or wayfinding typeface, so the tail on l is unnecessary.

    The circle tittle is just silly and distracting.

    The upper stroke of S and s extends much too far to the right.

    W is narrow and w is wide.

    The simple form used for K and k isn't working at all.

  • Michael JarboeMichael Jarboe Posts: 210
    edited December 2015
    The problem with an exercise purely focused on forms-only, is that letterforms are not (or rarely) utilized or viewed in a vacuum. Once you start moving past studies of a few letterforms each, ideally you should put these together and view them as words, or at least strings of letter pairs in which you can assess how they are working together (or not), and how they play off each other. This includes having to make decisions regarding sidebearings and vertical metrics, let alone working in an additional (master) weight or two, all of which will have a significant influence on the shapes, width, and details.
  • In line with James' and Michael's comments I think setting this in a few words and sharing that will show some areas that aren't working within words.
  • Look at the Trade Gothic Extended designs.

  • There are words set in the linked pdf (though not in sentences). 
  • ‘Ss’ are leaning backwards.
  • There is a bend rather than a smooth curve at the descenders of /g and /y, and as Puckett suggested, the letterforms ought to be more open. It's proper to bring the terminal of the descenders a little bit down and in case of /g also move it a bit to the right, so optically the descender doesn't seem to extend beyond the bowl. This follows the principle of rounded shapes looking optically smaller, so if you align the terminal of the descender to the outer left point of the bowl, it seems to extend the bowl whereas this doesn't happen with /y, which has a vertical left side rather than a bowl.

    I would also replace the tittles (the dots on i/j) with solid dots rather than open circles.

    I personally disagree with Craig's comment about keeping /l narrow. I think the loop ought to extend further.

    I would also condense /m, /w and /r. The /m should be condensed because it's a lot wider than any other character, and /m should always be slightly more condensed than /n, thus providing a more even texture and color (distribution of black on white). The /w should be condensed for the same reasons. As for /r, it leaves such a big gap underneath its arm that this will also cause an uneven rhythm, texture and color. Condense it slightly.

    B/E/F/J/M/N/O/Q/R/S/T/X/Z should also be slightly condensed, or perhaps the other capitals slightly expanded. Not all capitals look balanced in terms of their dimensions. For example, the B looks bigger than A.

    Also, just like you did with A/V/W, make all the rounded capitals a bit bigger than the rectangular ones so they look optically the same height. Again, rounded shapes look smaller, so this should be compensated for. You seem to be doing this correctly in the lowercase letters.

    K/k look awkward. Either place a small horizontal stroke in between the stem and the diagonals, or let the top diagonal connect with the stem at the bottom, and let the bottom diagonal connect to the other diagonal (a grotesque K, as seen in Helvetica).
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