Designing slash glyphs in heavy weights

Tural AlisoyTural Alisoy Posts: 6
edited April 21 in Lettering Critiques
Hi. Please help me. What do you think? Which is true? In general, as the letters thicken, what should be the thickness of such letters slash or bar?



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  • Alex VisiAlex Visi Posts: 165
    Just have a look at well designed typefaces. For sure, thinner than letters, but not too thin either.

    Ø, as far as I understand does need the crossbar in the middle and your second option is not acceptable (or at least rare even in bold weights).

    Other options are either too thick or too thin to my taste.
  • James PuckettJames Puckett Posts: 1,836
    It’s a stylistic choice that can work either way, similar to how very light diacritics can work just fine with ultra bold letters. But if you make the bars heavy then you need to lighten the stems they cross and the counter of o needs to increase in size dramatically. It is important to keep size in mind; if the typeface is intended to work as text then your RIBBI weights need care to stay legible. 
  • It’s a stylistic choice that can work either way, similar to how very light diacritics can work just fine with ultra bold letters. 
    To add to James' comments, its often impossible to have the bars a fraction lighter in low contrast typefaces featuring low stroke modulation i.e. geometrics. Doing so makes the whole glyph clog up the counter (ø) if the bar is to remain unbroken the bar of /ł will look too heavy. A good type designer will tweak these bars in each weight to ensure they remain legible in small point sizes for body copy.

    When assessing typefaces I tend to look at the diacritics and the barred glyphs simultaneously to see if the designer took care in their craft. Polish characters such as the lslash provide good feedback on a typeface's quality as inexperienced designers don't understand the slash is an integral part of the letter, changing it from the usual Latin 'l' sound to a 'w' sound. It's either too light and/or too narrow to be visible. 

    In short, the slash should be visible in whatever point size the type is intended for, be it display or text.

      
  • Christian ThalmannChristian Thalmann Posts: 1,772
    edited April 22
    I recently got the advice to make the ø look like it's just a regular o with a slash. Obviously, it can't actually be that, but it can still make that optical impression.





  • Craig EliasonCraig Eliason Posts: 1,250
    I recently got the advice to make the ø look like it's just a regular o with a slash. Obviously, it can't actually be that, but it can still make that optical impression.





    How did you decide on perpendicular terminals for L's slash vs italic-angle terminals for l's? Just a matter of spacing? 
  • … Polish characters such as the lslash provide good feedback on a typeface's quality …

    Very true. Especially the ł character is a sensitive one, requiring the best possible attention to both detailing and spacing.
    About the glyph details, Adam Twardoch’s recommendations are most valuable. To test the spacing, I assembled a few sample bits which I find helpful, of both Polish and Navajo languages:
    Batłtykiem, odwołuje. wzmógł półfinale współdziałanie
    bł cłčł eł głf oł pł tłt yły włw łłz łż łź
    aʼatłʼoʼii ałʼąą ndeiłkaahí ádeiłʼínígíí yádaałtiʼ




  • Nick ShinnNick Shinn Posts: 1,846
    There is some Lslash typography in which the slash doesn’t stick out on the left side, at all. In fact, in display use liberties with how accents are handled have been taken, in Poland; another instance is kreskas that “cross the line” at the top of C or O.
    So, despite my advice to ignore precedent—not entirely—of course it helps to have some study of the local culture, to see which designs appear to be conventional, and which are “edgy”. But you still have to make a decision on that.



  • Alex VisiAlex Visi Posts: 165
    So, despite my advice to ignore precedent—not entirely—of course it helps to have some study of the local culture, to see which designs appear to be conventional, and which are “edgy”. But you still have to make a decision on that.
    That’s what I thought after your initial comment. No way you can make a good letter by merely “experimenting”. Studying what’s good and what’s not is a must.
  • Christian ThalmannChristian Thalmann Posts: 1,772
    edited April 23
    How did you decide on perpendicular terminals for L's slash vs italic-angle terminals for l's? Just a matter of spacing? 
    Presumably. I thought I had followed someone's advice on ł, but I can't find it anymore.
    EDIT: Oh wait, it's probably Adam Twardoch's «How to?» website:

  • Nick ShinnNick Shinn Posts: 1,846
    edited April 23
    No way you can make a good letter by merely “experimenting”.

    I said “don’t rely” on theory, not “ignore”!

    Often, when people post isolated letters at Typedrawers, or alphabets, and ask for a critique or advice, I say “look at the letters in words, and tease out what works best”, or words to that effect. Because typedrawers make fonts, not letters.

    Having said that, Adam’s analysis and theory, quoted by Christian, make a lot of sense. Now I’m tempted to look for exceptions…
  • Dave CrosslandDave Crossland Posts: 1,166
    Here's how Font Bureau did it in Roboto Flex :)
  • Thank you very much guys. You have helped me a lot in this regard.
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