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Computer ArtsTutorial

Design a display font

Spacing, kerning, geometrics, ink-traps, proportions, overshoot and inspiration; we explain everything that's important when you start to create your own display font...

Ever fancied designing your own display font? Always carried around an idea for a cool font but never knew how to make it real? We show you how you can set your typographic creativity free.

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Type design is known as a difficult and time-consuming business. This may be true for text fonts, but why not take the fun and creative part and leave out the rest? A display font is a good way to step into the world of font design - it takes a lot of imagination and creativity and not too much technique to get a great result. This tutorial will help you understand what it takes to turn your ideas into a real font that you can use in your work and share with your friends.

We start with a general approach to the theme: where to find inspiration and how to transform it into an idea that works. We help you avoid common problems and show you an efficient way to create a font in Illustrator CS and FontLab Studio. The basic drawing is done in Illustrator, while the refinements are done in FontLab Studio, so each program is used for what it's best at. We also show you how you can make geometric and mirror axes work in your favour. This helps you to create alternative versions of the characters that can be built in lower case, leading to a font with a slight unicase feeling which gives the designer a lot of creative freedom.

In the final part, we teach you a fast and efficient way to space your font and give you an introduction to the difficult theme of kerning. With the help of this tutorial, you won't find it half as hard to make your font look absolutely amazing.

Click here to download the support files (595KB)

Click here to download the tutorial for free

Check out this fantastic selection of free fonts

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