I am a hobbyist dabbling into illustration and graphic design and I am trying now for the first time to design a typeface. I'm doing a slab serif roughly inspired by the Proteus Project. I started out with setting Saracen in a low res at small point size, then manually added and removed pixels, then went into illustrator and did some 3d-filters. With that as a basis I am now building my typeface, mostly looking at Acropolis for guidance.
However, I am not at all pleased with how it's looking now. Before I go on to make the rest of the letters (IF I even go on) I would very much appreciate some honest feedback, and some tips maybe on how to get this thing better looking. It doesn't have to become a world class font, I only want the average graphic designer not to see that I made it myself. Thanks in advance for anyone willing to spew some critique!
A technical question also: I am working in Illustrator for now (then copy pasting to fontlab 7), but if I want to change the overall ratios of my letters (let's say make all stems a bit thicker), that is a lot of work (especially since Illustrator won't snap properly and I have to zoom all the time). Is it worth learning fontlab for this? Or is it an equal amount of work in that program?
Also: I am working with an 8 degree angle. But if I copy the letters into Fontlab some angles are 8.1 some are 7.9, and some are even more off. Is this something you worry about? Or do I ignore it? (I guess I know the answer...)
Thank you and all best
It absolutely is, or any other font editor for that matter.
- Inconsistent blockiness: thanks for pointing it out!
- Starting with an upright version: good to know that this is easier to spot inconsistencies. I'm not sure yet if I will give it a try, because if I ever make an upright, I would like it to have slightly different letterforms (though I realize that what I have here is more of an oblique than a real italic...)
You might find this thread useful. https://typedrawers.com/discussion/2809/italics-angle-compensations. However, your font is much more geometric than handwritten.
I agree the /u is not recognizable. The whitespace is filled in at the bottom in letters like /m and /k, so I don't think you should just flip that to the top in one letter. for the /v and /w, consider a serif at the bottom of the letter like in this sports font.
(sorry for raw link my hyperlink keeps breaking)
In the "po" letter combination, the cut in bottom right corner of /p is does not optically go up as high as in the bottom left corner of /o or /e. This doesn't feel as much as an issue in "oq."
The slow tapering at the tail end of /e doesn't match other letters. In the /j and /k you have a strong diagonal angle, use that for reference. You should also edit the /t to match as well.