Line-spacing: getting it right

If you’re a new font designer wondering how to set your OpenType font’s em-height and line-spacing, the advice you’ll find online is just about all wrong. Technology has changed, and the historical measures no longer hold true. Here’s how you do it in FontForge.

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Creating bold weights in FontForge

The Coelacanth typeface I’m creating is classic Venetian style, harking back to an age before bold type was invented. Bruce Rogers didn’t create a bold for Centaur (on which Coelacanth is based), but we now live in an age of philistines, and bold type is ubiquitous. I’d like Coelacanth to be versatile and meet all […]

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Kern Baby — Typographic kerning aid

To save time and eyesight, use this text for testing character-spacing and kerning. It has all the usual character combos, with the main kerning pairs heading the list. Leslie Cabarga, creator of the excellent Kern King, hinted that someone could go one better. Well, this text adds many common, useful character pairs, plus all-caps and […]

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Addition-only Bezier cubic splines

It’s not so often you need to code your own bezier curves nowadays. If you do, here’s a fast algorithm which uses fewer arithmetic operations — and additions only. I felt very clever when I discovered this a dozen years ago, but I doubt I was the first.

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Creating an italic font for Coelacanth

When designing the Coelacanth typeface, my remake of Bruce Roger’s Centaur, I created the italics from scratch because I didn’t feel that Arrighi, the italic normally used with Centaur, really matches the roman. Arrighi is very nice, but quite different. Here’s what I did:

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