So at the start of this year I decided to challenge myself and build my debut font, Knubi. Some of you may have already read that I did this as a challenge to see what sort of a blue print, looking at letters all my life had left on my brain. So I set out to create Knubi without referencing another font… in fact you can read the whole story behind it here.
What I wanted to share with you today is my follow up font, Museology and how deciding to create a font familly is by far the biggest challenge I have ever set myself. Muchos respect to all you font builders out there. Most of my time is spent doing Corporate Identity work, that’s what drives my business, but after creating Knubi, I decided I wanted to have another crack at it, this time with the knowledge I had gained from creating Knubi. I also want to release a much more marketable font. Since Knubi isn’t a display font and was only released as one weight, it needs bold and italic brothers and sisters to keep it some company.
Note: It is my long term goal to give Knubi a family. In order to do this I need to recreate it from the ground up thanks to the little tiny rounded corners I gave it, [*sigh] manually.
This time around it has been a hell of a lot easier to create my follow-up album. Motifs become easier to identify, and the techniques and the way you go about creating the font become more streamlined thanks to the learning curve of building Knubi.
There’s still so much to learn and I’ve only scratched the surface – so whilst that’s an intimidating thought, it’s also nice to recognise and fully appreciate the effort involved when admiring a desirable letter form/ font. For anyone that’s interested in type, building your own font is a fantastic way to become more intimate with all the little nuances that make for a perfectly balanced letterform. Studying the mechanics of other fonts (there’s only a million out there to choose from) and making my own from the ground up has been a very rewarding experience (albeit very time consuming). Learning the craft of designing letterforms requires a lot of extreme attention to detail over very long periods of time. It’s not for everyone, but I truly beleive if you’re serious about type, every type loving frother should try it at least once in their life. Even if you don’t get it up and running, just creating the vectors of every lower case and uppercase letter is a fantastic exercise to do.
Here are some preview screen shots of my follow-up album, Museology. I hope to release it early in 2014. It’s only at the drafting stage, so very much a work in progress.
Above you can see how I’ve used grids and guides in order to create the various weights of the very fastidious “s”. A letter that demands respect, time and lots of hours tweaking in order to obtain that perfect balance. A few pixel shifts to the left can create the illusion she’s leaning back in a deck chair, a few to the right and she’s taking a squizz over her belly at her pretty red toe nails.
Above are the 4 weights that will make up Museology. Once I have refined them and finished the remaining glyphs for the lightest version, it will be on to their respective italic versions.