Designers Tobias Frere-Jones and Nina Stössinger created Conductor in an homage to "the delicate, blocky numerals from vintage Bulgarian lottery tickets" with "elements of vernacular shopfront lettering and mid-century type design." (via Kottke)
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Bethany Heck's Font Review Journal is dedicated to criticism of fonts, and itself very handsomely typeset by Phil Moody. The latest in-depth review is of Lucas Sharp's Ogg.
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My goal isn’t to prescribe a number score or valuation on a typeface — rather, I want to celebrate, analyze, demystify and inform designers who are looking to improve their typographic choices. I won’t be reviewing any fonts here that I don’t personally use and see value in. Designing a typeface is a herculean effort that takes hundreds of hours and often years of time to refine and complete. My aim is to show appreciation for these works of art through thoughtful discourse, aesthetic studies and historical context. There is often a gulf in the communication between the type design community and the designers who put their work to use, and I hope this site serves as a sort of bridge to bring the two practices to a closer understanding of each other.
Selectrics get all the hype, but I love the typefaces available on Smith-Corona typewriters from the 1960s. From the samples posted by munk, I think my favorites are the futuristic but legible "Classic Elite No. 86" and the handwriting-style Artistic Script (pictured).
There are about 20 in the set. The only ones that seem to be available as fonts are Numode No. 61, and this set with Smith-Corona's Prestige, Mini gothic and the script, bu all in very roughly-scanned form.
(Via this conversation between @hacklib and Marcin Wichary, who is writing a book about the typewriter and mechanical keyboard community.) Read the rest
The Anatomy of a Thousand Typefaces is an attractive yet simple web-app that makes it easy to find 'n' filter your way through popular fonts, with some interesting stats and visualizations of the set. [via MeFi] Read the rest
Pissjar Sans is a free typeface evoking the unique letterforms of urine on cotton fabric. What's remarkable about it is the fastidious attention to detail and workmanship evinced by type designers in pursuit of what could easily have been something dashed off and doomed to dafont.com obscurity. They really put their backs into it.
HOW WAS IT DONE?
We built a custom frame and tried out loads of different fabrics, using some good pieces of worn bed sheets with the perfect absorbency to cover the frame. Then we just started to pee a lot, one letter per pee session. When the bladder was empty we had like 5 seconds to photograph the frame before it bled out. After that we vectorized the photo and edited it with a font software.
HOW LONG TIME DID IT TAKE?
The peeing took approximately six months, plus about a month or so to finish up the font.
DID YOU CHEAT?
Well, we worked on the R for like two weeks until we gave up and had to recreate it from three different peeing sessions.
Perfect for wedding invitations and children's birthdays. Read the rest
In March 1913, Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson threw the most beautiful typeface in the world off of London's Hammersmith Bridge to keep it out of the hands of his estranged printing partner. In this week's episode of the Futility Closet podcast we'll explore what would lead a man to destroy the culmination of his life's work -- and what led one modern admirer to try to revive it.
We'll also scrutinize a housekeeper and puzzle over a slumped child.
Please support us on Patreon! Read the rest
You may now enjoy the Tron Legacy Encom user interface in HTML. The original, as depicted in the movie, was designed by Bradley Munkowitz; the recreation defaults to github feeds, but has all sorts of possibilities to fool around with, such as Wikipedia (pictured) and the weather.
Hello User. This is a reproduction of the graphics in the boardroom scene in Tron: Legacy. If you have not seen that movie,
check out this background material on the making of that scene before proceeding.
To make this a bit more fun, the boardroom is configured to visualize live updates from Github and Wikipedia,
with more streams to come. Click on a stream in the window to the right to continue.
The boardroom visualization requires the use of WebGL
and Event Source. The test below indicates the availability of these features
on your system.
This was created by @arscan as a learning exercise. It is not affiliated with
Disney, Tron: Legacy, Encom, Wikipedia or Github in any way. The source is available on Github.
The typeface is Inconsolata, of course. Read the rest
Alex Clay created "Arabic Pixel," which is to his knowledge the world's first public domain (CC0) Arabic font. Read the rest
Forget Comic Sans and Papyrus, writes John Brownlee. Mistral is the font to hate.
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This is a font created to exemplify everything sophisticated and elegant about postwar France. Yet over the course of the 21st century, Mistral has become positively unmoored a font just as likely to be used on a cheap tube of lip gloss or the flickering neon sign of an Amsterdam porn shop as it is on the label of your sandals, or the side of your uncle’s yacht.
Comic Parchment is a font combining the best elements of the world's two most widely-loved and respected faces: Comic Sans and Papyrus.
Comic Sans accurately and elegantly translates classic comic book charm to the digital context, and Papyrus adds a soulful, mouth-wateringly ragged contour to its otherwise classic serifs. But only Comic Parchment weds the two in a perfect pop-culture marriage of whitebread childishness and ersatz ethnic ambiguity.
The magnum opus of genius type designer Ben Harman, Comic Parchment is $5. Read the rest
Type designer Jonathan Hoefler's latest work, Inkwell, is a family of cute, hand-drawn imitations of distinctive type families of past and present. He fears that it will be compared to Comic Sans, popular with the people but reviled by the pros.
“Comic Sans is shooting for ‘informal’ but hits ‘amateurish,'” Hoefler says. “I wanted Inkwell to be informal, but proficient.” Indeed, Inkwell’s “tiny universe of fonts” contains both serif and sans versions, plus four decorative fonts including a cursive-like script, a blueprint-inspired all-caps set, even a blackletter. (“Think less ‘death announcement,’ more ‘country club invitation.'” Hoefler says.)
Inkwell's a lovely antidote to Comic Sans, but the fact you can pay $400 for it and yet find these anxieties and ironies in every line says something about the beast's power.
Sometimes I look at the dawn and I think Comic Sans may be the greatest typeface of all time. If there were another bloodsoaked civil war in this country, leaving it and half the world past it a wasteland scoured of life and beset by a heavensent grief and heartache that makes us pine for death even as we understand finally that the wrath of God lies sleeping, the armistice will be printed in Times New Roman and the new constitution in Comic Sans. Read the rest
Futuracha Pro is a typeface designed to take excessive advantage of alternatives, ligatures and other features of modern fonts, so much so that as you type, the words evolve into striking, but consistent new forms.[via Bored Panda]
Futuracha Pro is an Open Type Font, which magically adjusts and readjusts as you write. Its quirkiness and eccentricity are the two main features that made it one of the most beloved fonts in the whole world. Until today, nobody was able to just sit down and type with it. Featuring various combinations of letters and plenty of playful ligatures, Futuracha Pro gives creative people the opportunity to actually type and create, making their ideas extraordinary and unique!
Currently available as an elaborate nest of EPS files, a proper font's been in the works for years. You can preorder it for $50, but it's still cooking and will not be available until May.
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There are typefaces that attempt to remain legible at ludicrously small sizes. Ken Perlin's Tinyfont attempts to do so while retaining traditional letterforms, putting LCD subpixels to clever use. There are various 3x5 pixel fonts for those who prefer the crisp purity of the traditional pixel, and prior attempts at the holy grail of a legible 3x3 nerd font.
Minima is an effort to make the perfect 4x4 pixel font, allowing itself a little more space but also going step further toward abstraction, abandoning legibility in favor of more easily-distinguished characters. It's €10 and I need a tylenol.
via Brutalist Websites. Read the rest
Futuracha is a successfully crowdfunded typeface that makes use of Open Type's wizardry to switch its ligatures as you type, producing beautiful effects -- before the crowdfunding campaign, Futuracha users had to hand-set those ligatures, but now it's just type and go. $50 for a commercial license, $15 for a personal license. Ships in May. (via Red Ferret) Read the rest
Cool S Font is an entire typeface based around the coolest form of the letter "S", that being an elongated awesome hexagonal loop where the form of the letter is created by the illusion of a figure-8 bridging itself.
"Every letter is as cool as the cool S," writes type designer Tom Goulet. "Make any word look cool."
And here is a Chrome extension to turn every font on the web into the Cool S Font. Read the rest
Comic Sans MS, perhaps the most polarizing font in history, was designed by Vincent Connare for Microsoft and unleashed upon the world in 1994.
"If you didn't notice (a piece of art), I considered that was bad," Connare says. "And if you did notice, it was good."
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It's not from Superman. It predates the Stussy logo. Why did schoolchildren around the globe get infatuated with this stylized S? Vice takes a (kinda shallow) dive into the provenance of the stylized S. Read the rest