Staverton

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Thank you all again for the comments and feedback on Silson. I have finally plucked up the courage to show off my second attempt at a font; I thought I would try a serif this time. The intended use is body text for print. I am sure there are lots of things that need work about it, but I don't actually know what they are. Any help would be appreciated!

Comments

  • Simon Cozens
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    Apart from the /p being too short. I can see that one myself.
  • Christian Thalmann
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    Looking at the light weight, there is extreme inconsistency among different characters in terms of stroke width (compare the bowls of /b and /a, for example), contrast (/g has high contrast, /s is monolinear, /T is actually inversed-contrast), serif shape (extremely thin and upcurved bottom serifs vs very heavy top serifs), arch/stem connection design (compare /b with /n), width (/n is extremely narrow), etc.

    You also need to learn about curve quality. Your current curves are blobby and choppy.

    I would suggest concentrating on finishing Silson before tackling a Garalde. I also tried to make a book font as my very first serious font project, and I failed for lack of knowledge and experience. Use Silson as a learning experience and then put what you learned to use on Staverton.

    When you do continue on Staverton, restrict yourself to a single master (Regular?) until you've decided the characteristics of your typeface (contrast, design philosophy, serifs, etc.). Making a multi-master typeface is a difficult exercise in keeping the family likeness alive even across a wide range of weights; that is impossible to achieve if you haven't established the characteristic look of the family in the first place.

    Good luck!


  • Simon Cozens
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    Ouch. But thank you, that was fair. I guess I was thinking of the advice given to beginners in the game of go: lose your first hundred games as quickly as possible." Back to something easier...
  • Christian Thalmann
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    Sorry, this wasn't supposed to come off as «ouch». It took me about 1–2 years to get from making all the same mistakes as you to being able to start with my text font in earnest. (And that's 1–2 years of doing type design as a hobby, not full-time, to be sure.) That's not a huge amount of time, and the time in between was not spent toiling and cramming, but rather just working on lower-complexity projects like display fonts with a single weight.

    Of course, I'm still learning — don't expect to be done after 2 years! But you'll have the eye to see the most common problems and the hand to solve them.

    Good luck!
  • Thomas Phinney
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    In general, I suggest getting feedback much earlier in your process. Do a keyword first, get feedback, and gradually expand the glyph set with further revisions.

    The main problem here is that it feels like the glyphs are from a bunch of different fonts. Sometimes different parts of the same glyph feel like they are from different fonts.

    Another problem is, you've told us nothing about your design goals. What is the purpose of the font? What feeling are you trying to evoke? For example, there are some glyphs that would look something like the way they do due to uneven inking and bad printing in a letterpress environment. Is that on purpose? Is it intended to be used for body text? For headings? To look archaic? To be a modern reinterpretation? Is it a deconstructionist pastiche/parody?

    You say it's a Garalde, but you don't use Garalde proportions, more like condensed-modern proportions. That is, caps are all relatively narrow, but differences that tend to be strong in Garalde are mostly missing. Compare width of E and G for example.

    In the light weight, some of your serifs are razor-thin, others mid-weight, some like a Clarendon. Very inconsistent. Sometimes both on the same letter, such as the i. Hmm, but I am just echoing Christian's comments, aren't I? Well, they are all good comments.

    Lowercase letter proportions are also inconsistent. The n and o are not from the same typeface, at least not the same Garalde typeface. The n is relatively narrower than the o.

    This is in no way an exhaustive critique, just a start.



  • attar
    attar Posts: 209
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    The thickness of your strokes modulates rather randomly and awkwardly. I suggest that you practise calligraphy, it would give you a sense of how strokes are constructed and flow together.
    A minima, try to make sketches on paper with a consistent way of shaping your strokes: http://typographica.org/on-typography/sketching-out-of-my-comfort-zone-a-type-design-experiment/