Begin construction by establishing the width of the capital letter I. From there, establish the width of the capital letter H. Adding the crossbar provides the basic building blocks for the letters L, E, F, and T.
- [Instructor] We'll start our design with the capital I. Double-click on the cap I glyph cell in the font window to open it in a new edit window. Using the rectangle primitive tool, draw a simple vertical rectangle 100 units wide and 800 units tall, stretching from the baseline to the cap height. And if you don't make it the right size, obviously, you can just type in the actual measurements here.
Correct the path direction by hitting Shift + Command + R and set the side bearings to 50 on the left and the right and then we're done. With this one rectangle, we've established the stroke width and the fit for the entire font. Next, type a cap H. Hit T and then begin typing, so T. Copy the stroke from the cap I and paste it twice into the H.
Select the second copy and nudge it right by 100 units. So here I've aligned them, and now I'm going to hold down Shift and nudge them 10 units at a time. And now I'll double check the space between the strokes with the measurement tool. So I'm going to hold down Shift, Control, Option, Command, and the spacebar, and then I'll drag across. And I can see that, yes indeed, the space between the two strokes is 100 units. We'll go back to the rectangle primitive tool to draw the crossbar.
And we want our crossbar to be 90 units tall and to stretch across here. So, I'll draw it. You can see it's 93 units tall. So let's make it 90. Let's correct the path direction. Again, select all, Shift + Command + R. And here I'll stop for one second just to mention why correcting the path direction's important. So, if I reverse the path direction on this selected contour by holding down Control and changing the direction, you can see now the direction is running clockwise whereas before on both of these, they're running counterclockwise.
And if I preview this by holding down the spacebar, you can see that the fill doesn't work correctly. And if I select all and correct path direction, again, Shift + Command + R, and preview again by holding down the spacebar, you can see now that the fills work correctly. So let's check the vertical position of the crossbar. It seems a little bit low right now, so let's measure it up just a little bit. And there, that's about right.
Set the right side bearing to 50 units. We can make sure that the H and the I side bearings stay synchronized by using another Glyphs App shortcut. We'll type H into the side bearings for the I, and the program will automatically copy the measurements. Any changes to the side bearings of the H will be reflected in the side bearings of the I. Using the vertical and horizontal strokes, we'll construct the L, E, F, and T. The L, E, and F will be 230 units wide.
Begin with the cap E. So again, we'll go to the text tool. Type cap E. Copy the left stem and the crossbar from the cap H. We'll paste it in. And now, let's make sure that this crossbar is 230 units wide. Then we'll select both of the shapes and align them left using the alignment tools in the transformation section of the menu bar at the right of the edit window. We'll select the crossbar again, copy it, and paste it.
And then Shift + click to select the stem. Once more, we'll use the alignment tools to align the second horizontal to the top of the stem. Now we'll copy and paste one more time. We'll Shift + click, and then we'll align to the bottom of the stem. Copy the E and trim away the horizontal strokes to form the F and L.
Do the same for the T, making the top stroke 280 units wide and centering it above the stem. Set the right side bearings for the E and F to half of H. Here again, we can use the shortcut. If we type "=8*.5" which means equals to H times 0.5 into the side bearing box, Glyphs App will calculate the amount, 0.5 or one-half of 50, or 25 units.
Reducing the side bearings for these letters allows them to set closer to surrounding glyphs, compensating for their open profiles. The L and T have larger counter spaces. So we'll set the right side bearing of the L and both sides of the T to one-quarter of H or "=H*.25". That's it for the simple capitals. We've constructed only six of the 52 letters, but we've laid the groundwork for the entire font. Go ahead and type some test words in the edit window.
Admire your work, and get ready for some more challenging forms.
- Setting up a Glyphs App file
- Defining the stroke width
- Creating rounded glyphs
- Creating numbers
- Making uppercase and lowercase forms
- Creating punctuation
- Fixing spacing
- Making your font unique