Possible Collaboration Between Artist and Type Designer

Daniel MitsuiDaniel Mitsui Posts: 1
edited May 28 in Type Business
Hello. This is my first post here, so my apologies if this is not the appropriate forum for this sort of inquiry.

I am an artist who is looking for a collaborator to make a typeface, or several typefaces. 

Some background: I mostly make ink drawings in a late medieval tyle, and these include a lot of calligraphy and fancy lettering - versals and blackletter mostly. 

About a decade ago I undertook such a project with some 1500 calligraphed words. I really wanted to find a script that matched well with Gothic artwork, but was easy for contemporary eyes to read. Not being satisfied with the few historical examples I could find, I decided to create my own. 

This, ultimately, became the basis for my first typeface, which I named Benedict (after my older son). You can see an example here:

http://www.danielmitsui.com/00_misc/benedict_characters.jpg

I scanned the hand-drawn letters, reworked them a lot on Photoshop, and used Type 3.2 to turn them into a font. I use this all the time in my own artwork and publishing projects (mostly letterpress broadsides). And for these purposes, it works very well. 

When I first designed it, I never expected that anyone else would want it, but I am getting more and more requests for a public version of it. And every time, I need to explain, rather sheepishly, that in its current form, it's not really useful to anyone but me. 

See, the thing is that I have no real idea how to use font design software, or any vector-based program for that matter, so there are all sorts of weird quirks wherever I tried to work around my own limitations. I don't know how to program ligatures, so I assigned the ligatures to glyphs that I rarely use myself, and insert them into text via find-and-replace. Some with kerned characters - I don't know how to program kerning pairs, so I have to search for LT pairs are replace them with ÝT. 

Also, since I don't know how to work with vectors, I just used the auto-trace tool to greate the glyphs. For my purposes (letterpress printed at about 16pt), they look fine, but the nodes are all over the place, and look a terrible mess at larger scale. 

There are probably a host of other issues as well that would need to fixed to make the font salable. 

So I would like to find a type designer, someone who is actually good at the technical aspect of this art, who could put together a version of the Benedict typeface that anyone could use. At this point, the original drawings are long gone - so that would probably require redrawing the characters, making them smooth and consistent. And then programming ligatures, kerns, and all the things that a professional typeface has. 

If you have any interest, please e-mail me at [email protected] And let me know what sort of compensation you would want - a fee, or shared credit, or something else. I'm not sure what is typical in this field. 

Also, I have designed several other typefaces, all of which have similar issues. If any of these interest you, please let me know! These include Lux (Lombardic capitals, including Greek and Hebrew), Victor (display capitals with tiny plants and animals inside them, sort of like medieval versals turned inside-out), and Canic (a normal blackletter). 



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