Bilitis is an original “brush script” style font we designed for a project back in 1998 and released then with some success. It has a strong visual appeal with rough hewn character forms which are very unusual. In this new release we’ve also added a larger selection of alternate character forms and ligatures to add more variety if you want to explore the extended character set. As a script which doesn’t have too much of a refined and elegant look it’s a nice alternative style to have in your collection.
Escargot is based on lettering from the cover of an early pulp novel I came across a couple of months ago. It’s a strong example of a distinctive style of sign and poster lettering from the 1930, characterized by super high contrast between the weighting on the left and right sides of the character. It’s a style particularly identified with art deco design, and variations of it can be found all over the place in period design, on movie marquis, electronic products and logos. It’s actually similar to the base character designs of which a much more ornate variant is used in the forthcoming movie version of The Great Gatsby. The name was picked for a couple of odd reasons – the round characters look a bit like snails, and the name rhymes with art deco.
Script fonts can be a real challenge to design, especially when they are designed to have interconnecting characters which require exacting kerning and character positioning. When we first developed Orphiel we did a lot of kerning work on it, but despite a generally pleasing appearance, there were some inconsistencies in the kerning which were never really satisfactory. This kind of demanded a new release of the ornate and decorative script font with extra attention to the connections between the characters and adding even more kerning pairs.
The result is a new release of Orphiel which works even better than the original with some essential improvements which make it cleaner and better flowing. It’s a great font for formal documents, invitations and decorative uses where you need a fancy script style.
We’ve featured some articles on the designs of pulp novel covers from the mid-20th century, including s look at the fonts used in those designs. We’ve also released fonts based on those designs, like suspicion. These old book cover designs are a great resource for period fonts and lettering, and in going through a slew of them, my eye was caught by the title design for the Dell reissues of the Mike Shayne mystery novels in the 1960s, which use a heavy weight font which mixes up traditional upper and lowercase forms. The font is very characteristic of 1960s book and poster design and similar to the font used for the first Rolling Stones Album and the Mickey Spillane pulp novels of the same period.
The Spillane font falls in the same general style but although it is about the same boldness, is notably different in having tiny serifs on the characters. It also uses just uppercase forms rather than mixing upper and lowercase, but in developing the Shayne font it was a useful reference for what the uppercase variants might look like.
The end result in the Shayne font is a heavy weight which mixes upper and lowercase character forms in a way which is very characteristic of 1960s design. It’s as excellent for posters and book covers today as it was when the Mike Shayne novels were popular.
The Mike Shayne mystery novels were written by a series of writers under the name Brett Halliday, and though they are not much remembered today, they were very popular, spawning 12 movies, a radio show and a television series. They followed the popular private eye conventions of the period, including the classid drawing room denouement with all of the suspects present. The series began in the 1930s and reached its peak of popularity in the late 1950s before being supplanted by racier hard-boiled detective fiction.
It has taken a lot of hours of development, but we finally have our promised Walter Crane Initials font. Or should I say FOUR fonts, because in the process of developing the font it turned out that we ended up with more than we bargained for. One reason that there are four fonts is that there was so much material to work with, drawing mainly from Crane’s decorations for Reynard the Fox. The other reason is that the initials turned out to require such complex outlines that we couldn’t put more than 26 characters in a single font file so we had to break them up. We also ended up with both a set of 52 initials and also two more fonts of just the original ornaments used for the initials, plus some additional ornaments which didn’t fit the format.
The basis of the characters is a set of detailed woodcut animal images taken from the characters in the classic French fairytale of Reynard the Fox, including foxes, bears, badgers, lions, stags, snakes and birds. Some of the images are even scenes with multiple animals. These are included in their original form in the ornaments fonts, but in the initials they have been combined with the letters from our Crane Gothic font as reversed text which stands out nicely but also integrates well with the background images.
All four of the fonts come together in a consolidated package at a special price, plus the package also includes several decorative border images from the book as a bonus. All of this together is just $29, an extraordinary price for such an unusual set of fonts. You can order the package from our ONLINE STORE. You can also download and try out the DEMO FONT with a limited character set drawn from all the different fonts.
Malagua was originally released in 1999 and has been revised several times since then, culminating in this new release with improved weighting and additional special characters.
MAlagua is based on examples of rough hand lettering from the 17th century. It has characteristics in common with some of our other colonial period fonts like Allegheny, Queensland and Hesperides but is much more irregular, with a shaky, rough appearance. It’s also part of our Colonial Fonts package.
One of the special features of Malagua is that it includes alternate versions of many of the characters so you can vary the appearance of words so that it looks more like what you type is hand written.
|In an article last week we explored the origins of the font used in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained and a bit of the history of the Django genre of films. That was part of the process of the development of an original font based on the lettering used in the original Django, a process similar to what was presumably used to create the font featured in the Tarantino film. The goal of the project was not to create a duplicate of the title font in the new film, but to make an original font working from the same source material. Naturally the end result is quite similar to the font in Django Unchained, but at the same time a unique and original interpretation of the title lettering in the older film.
Our Original Django font includes a full set of uppercase characters and custom small caps, plus numbers, punctuation and some special characters like the extra-long “J” used in the original titles. Like all our fonts it is available in both TrueType and OpenType format for Windows or MacOS.
You can view a full character set of Original Django by using our new type preview tool to view custom samples of text in this font. Or alternatively you can download the demo version with a limited character set for free.
And if you like it, you can download the full version with both character sets from our OMLINE STORE for just $24.
Potsdam was one of our earliest font releases, first produced in 1992 based on samples of 19th century decorative German type. It was one of our first fonts designed for MacIntosh computer users and follows the naming convention for Mac fonts of that era, being named after a city. The characters are decorative and embellished with ornate spirals.
In the original release there were problems with the outlines being rough and somewhat jagged, a problem which had never really been addressed until this new and substantially improved version. All the outlines on all the characters have now been smoothed and regularized and the result is a much crisper and attractive rendering of the font. We’ve also added additional international language characters to make Potsdam more versatile.
We have done a number of fonts based on unique, historic movie titles. The most well known and widely circulated is our Captain Kidd font, but we have another historic movie font based on an even more famous movie, our Locksley font which comes from the titles of the Adventures of Robin Hood the black and white classic starring Errol Flynn.
It has an authentic medieval look, though the combination of elements of gothic and black letter styles is not strictly historical and certainly not right for the period in which the movie is set. However it does work on a title card and looks pretty good in other applications as well.
This is a new and revised version of Locksley, with the weight and propostions of the characters significantly adjusted and a number of new characters added.
Our Froissart font was first released in 2000 as part of our Medieval Fonts and Art package. It is an accurate recreation of the Littera Bastarda calligraphic style which was popular in the 14th and 15th centuries as gothic styles were losing popularity and there was a demand for something less formal and easier to write rapidly. It takes it’s name from Jean Froissart whose Chroniques of the Hundred Years War were reproduced by the Blois school and widely distributed and lettered entirely in this style. Bastarda lettering was a significant step forward in calligraphy which, because it was easier to write quickly, resulted in a boom in the book industry and the production and distribution of larger editions of hand-lettered books to a broader popular audience than had previously been possible, particularly in England and France. The rise in the use of Bastarda coincided with the first period of popularity of vernacular literature which signaled the very earliest phase of the Renaissance.
This is a new and revised version of Froissart, with the weighting of the characters significantly adjusted, additional alternate character forms taken specifically from Froissart’s Chroniques, plus key period ligatures and French language characters.