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Re: [BKARTS] Need help with fonts

Dear Karen,

I am not the most expert on this topic by far, but I see that the experts
have not yet weighed in.

The solution may depend on what effect you are looking for.  If you want to
space letters out, leading is all you need.  If what you are talking about
is the design of display letters to appear more natural than the standard
book type at large sizes, you may simply need a display font.  If you want
to squeeze them a bit, so the underlines and overlines overlap somewhat,
this is more complex, but easily achieved in computer typesetting.

There were once fonts made to accommodate interlocking letters, by means of
a rebate on the fore or trailing edges of the type pieces.  These were not
ordinarily available on book type, except as ligatures.  Display fonts and
oversizes, with swash letters and such were most likely to have these
accommodations.   In hot type situations, these would have been inserted as
made up blocks prepared by electro-etching or some such process from a
photo original using pasteups.  This process can be emulated with computer
type setting now.  There are founders and block makers who can use computer
generated originals to produce thin or type high metal printblocks.  I
don't know if a magnesium block can work in your Kwikprint, or if some
other process is necessary.

If you want to emulate hand placement of letters, you may need to use a
graphics program to lay out the letters individually with shifts and slight
rotations.  However, if you only want vertical and horizontal shifts, with
limited overlaps, then you can lay out such designs in Word or one of the
page layout programs.  Most of them will let you move letters about without
rotations.  The same can be accomplished in the old way, by using printed
puppets stuck to a layout board with wax or rubber cement.  This can be
done oversized, and then resized by camera work when making a film for the
block maker.

As has been recently discussed, Open Type fonts in InDesign can do some of
this automatically, at least as regards optical spacing.  However, the
effect you are seeking may be somewhat more than is provided by this route,
so if this program and fonts are not available to you, I wouldn't cry over it.


At 08:51 AM 18/08/2003 -0600, Karen Pardue wrote:
I do not usually deal with this problem as I am a limited edition binder,
but I am wondering if there are fonts that I can buy which emulate the
visual spacing between letters one sees on antiquarian books.  Many
antiquarian books were titled with handle letters with the space between
them set by the finisher, and I want that "look" of a title that has been
applied by handle letters, but is really stamped with my Kwikprint using
fonts and a typeholder. I hope everyone knows what I mean--conversely, the
spacing between contemporary fonts such as the ones bought through Kwikprint
is too contemporary.  Can anyone give me some ideas or feedback?

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