I'd love to get your feedback on this typeface. While I've been wrangling bezier curves and setting/licensing/ogling type for a couple of decades as an art director, this is my first attempt at type design.
The spacing hasn't been addressed yet -- I wanted to make sure the glyphs were solid before tackling that task.
- K arm and leg too heavy
- R leg too heavy
- S is leaning back
- T feels too narrow
- try a different Q
I also quite like your Q, though the tail seems too close to the body of the letter. It's making dark spots at both ends.
Your O, Q, and U are quite geometric—which I think makes them interesting—but they don't seem to fit with your C, G, J, and S, which are curvier. I think you need to pick a direction for your curves and stick to it. (If you move away from the ruler-and-compass look, you might want to look at H&FJ's new Idlewild, if you haven't already, to make sure you're not drawing that face over again.)
Your horizontal strokes seem a little heavy. It looks like you've already thinned them somewhat to make them match the verticals optically, but I think you need to go a little further. The crossbar of the J really stands out for me. And when a letter has lots of horizontal strokes, like B or E, you should probably make the middle cross-stroke even thinner.
I like those curly legs.
Sure, some line thicknesses need adjusting, but this is not a major issue.
The W could be wider. I generally try to match its width to M.
Why is O (and Q) flat-topped? C and G aren’t.
As more than one of you has pointed out, I need to "pick a direction for [my] curves and stick with it." I'm inclined to go in the curvier direction of the C/G/S, because I think it's more sympathetic to the curved legs of the K/R and funky tail of the Q -- features that'll help this avoid becoming an Idlewild clone.* (Thanks, Max & Nick. Glad to see the funky shapes have at least a couple of fans.)
(*Imagine my delight at having that beautiful face appear a few months after starting the sketches for this project.
Craig: Would you mind elaborating on the "contrast breakdown" you're seeing in the VWY? (I think of contrast as the province of the thicks 'n' thins of a trad serif face.) Is it related to the width of the W, as Nick's comment might suggest?
-- Regularized the approach to curves, so O/Q/U now are better related to C/G
-- Thinned the legs of the R/K
-- Widened the W
-- Tweaked the B, gave the E a centered waist
-- Reworked the curve of the J. I think it's a better fit with the rest of the characters.
-- Rotated the S slightly* and extended the lower left terminal.
*Is this cheating if I move my points to extrema and make the relevant handles vertical/horizontal before final export?
And the PDF...
I think the Y stem is too short. Nothing that extreme anywhere else.
S is still leaning back to my eye. I think the bottom terminal needs to move left a bit to steady it.
Agree with James M that the J's too wide.
-- Applied the superellipse treatment to B, D, P, R
-- Narrowed the J
-- Raised the stem of the Y
-- Resurrected and refined an early S with curves more in keeping with the direction the type is evolving
-- Moved the tail of the Q away from the body and made its entry more vertical to add a bit more air
Max, I haven't had a chance to address your "width at the equator" comment. Figured I'd tackle that in concert with feedback on the new rounder shapes.
(While really I like where this is going, there's a certain crispness to some of of the earlier, more strictly geometric characters that I miss. I may revive some of them as alternates, or make a sister face that is all "ruler-n-compass.")
I'm also feeling the presence of Idlewild hovering over my shoulder, and so saw the figures as an opportunity to inject a bit more personality into the face. I'll be interested and grateful to hear whether you think they're successful.
But I don't think you're finished with the S yet. The middle part of the spine may be too horizontal; the curve doesn't seem fluid yet.
I think the 1's too narrow. Maybe these two figures want more perpendicular junctures instead of the almost-curved junctures you have now? And the junctures of the 6 and 9 don't seem quite conssistent; the 'crossbar' of the 6 seems almost to curve into the vertical stroke, while the 9 is crisper. I think the crisper approach works better.
And speaking of feedback, I'd love to have everyone's thoughts on the latest edition.
-- Wider O/Q and 1
-- Revised S, 3
-- Redrawn 6/9 (much happier, I think)
-- "Narrower" (re-proportioned, really) 4
I has also got a notion to give the arms of the V, W and Y perpendicular endings, rather than shearing them off at the cap height. (I tried the same treatment with the top/bottom of the X and the bottom of the A. Disaster.) Distinctive, perhaps, but successful?
(I still haven't optically balanced the strokes in the figures.)
Here's the PDF: