I'm toying around with two very different design concepts for my next font project, and I'd like to hear your opinions on them to help me decide.
(1) Working title: Turicum
While doodling around with my Pilot pen, I've sort of accidentally developed a writing style with high x-height (almost unicase) reminiscent of uncial, but with italic-style serifs and italic-style architecture for many letters (e.g., no round-bowled /m/n/u/w). I've been wondering whether digitizing this would make a worthwhile project. With my recent work on Volantene Script and Brilliance, it wouldn't have to start from scratch, so it would be a comparatively work-efficient project. On the other hand, I'm worried that the market for such an obscure and difficult-to-classify style might be very limited.
The first attached image shows a sample on paper. I find the /e as depicted here too crowded, and have since adopted a more traditional-looking form with only a simple, diagonal midbar. I might be able to make the original form work electronically, though, by "cheating" a bit on the stroke weight. In any case, I'm thinking of adding a selection of stylistic alternates, perhaps even a simplified Textura-style series of capitals (like that /C on the upper left in the image).
(2) Working Title: Kensai
I like the notion of Square Word Calligraphy, and thought something of the sort would be feasible as an OpenType font. Rather than arbitrarily long words, I'd just make groups of 1–4 letters that would arrange themselves automatically using ligatures and contextual alternate rules. I've started making some sample characters in Glyphs (see second attached image).
While there are a number of fake asian fonts around, I believe I'd be the first to provide for multi-letter glyphs, so there's a potential novelty factor there that might work in my favor. Then again, the scope of use for such a font would be extremely limited. Unlike Turicum, this would be a lot of from-scratch handiwork, so I'm a bit reluctant to commit to it.
What do you think?