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Simon Cozens


Simon Cozens
Last Active
  • Re: New approaches of Arabic and English typeface, Please your feedback

    I'm not really sure what I'm looking at here. Is it meant to look a bit hand-drawn, a bit crude and bumpy? If so, that's fine, it's a legitimate aesthetic - although perhaps you could rough the /d up a bit; the inside bowl is too lovely. If not, take a look at the curves on, say, the arches of the /n and the /h.

    I can't really speak to the Arabic but it seems (to me at least) cleaner and less crude than the Latin. Compare the smoothness of the /dad-ar with the bumpiness of the /R. I don't know if that's a good match. Maybe tell us a bit more about your design idea?

    Are the feet of the /d and /a (and the /h and the /n) supposed to look different? Again if you're going for crude and hand-drawn, that's probably OK.

    The outer leg join of the /R looks to be at the wrong angle - should be going in to match the lower part of the bowl, so heading south-west instead of west.

    Do you have a full Latin alphabet yet or are you still developing it?
  • Re: Efficiency in kerning pairs

    On one hand I hear people talking about thousands of kern pairs. On the other I hear people like Andreas saying "space everything as well as you can, then kern only what is necessary", and Bruno Maag saying "kern straight-straight, straight-round, round-straight, round-round and be done with it". I wonder if he's oversimplifying for effect, but I take from that a pushback against over-complicated kerning and over-reliance. I wonder how to resolve this.

    I have to be a bit careful saying this, but... I wonder if there is a danger in coming to think of the number of kern pairs as a proxy for font quality. And I wonder if it becomes a pride issue - a way of showing how seriously you are taking things.

    I just opened up a bunch of fonts. Three were by truly world class designers, whose names you will know. The first was a display face with no kerning at all, which surprised me. It's still a great font. The second was a text face with 750 pairs (no categories) and all of the kerns were at 10 unit intervals. Applying categories and compressing, I got it down to 345. Another, which is widely regarded as an absolute classic display font, has 890 pairs.

    The fourth was by a designer I had never heard of. It has 230 glyphs, and even using categories has 2557 kern pairs, and they're all over the place: six units here, eight units there; /K/V gets -32 units whereas /K/W gets -31. Does that really make a difference? I don't know. But I think the designer was able to satisfy himself that he worked very hard in a way that he would not be satisfied with if he had only 300 pairs. Is there some internal pressure on people to achieve a certain number of kern pairs?

    "Space like hell, kern when you must" makes a lot of sense to me. How many "kern pairs" did some of the most famous letterpress types have? And every day I see software that still doesn't apply kerning at all. But still, it's hard for me to avoid the feeling that if I end up with less than five or six hundred pairs I haven't done a good enough job.
  • Re: Coolangatta

    Sorry, wrong file. Another try.
  • Re: Cyrillic kern strings?

    I've got to agree with James. Looking at Russian word lists gets you so far, until the day comes when you have to typeset Къ̀форд Ландѝдно or something.
  • Re: Coolangatta

    I almost don't need to ask, but: is the /s on the left less of a "train wreck"? I really liked the idea of having a line section in the crossbar, but it obviously wasn't working -  I actually wasn't really sure what was train wrecky about the one on the right until I redrew it without.