Custom and unique Pictograms for the Government of La Rioja (Spain)
Last year we had the pleasure of designing a custom pictograms typeface family as a companion of Riojana, the existing corporate typeface designed and licensed for Comunidad Autónoma de La Rioja (Spain).
The project started with some references given by the client and a wish list from them. Some of the icons where quite common (as “Restaurant”) but others quite particular, as they are related to very specific aspects from the region identity as (“Cachiberrio”).
1/ Defining the style
We started sketching by studying the proportions of the typeface and defining the metrics for the pictograms: the maxim height, top limit, bottom limit, a baseline… and also the relationship between them.
The second step consisted in defining the stylistic features of the pictograms:
—Matching the curves shapes of the Riojana typefaces, which are not perfect circles, but a bit “squarish”.
—The thickness of the pictograms’ lines are harmonious with the stem thickness of Riojana Book typeface but a bit thinner, because there is much more content in the pictogram than in the letters.
—Riojana typefaces have straight ending strokes (without curves), this is reflected in the pictograms.
—The drawing grid is composed of squares that have the dimension of the stroke. Given the enormous diversity, the icons are arranged in this grid according to their dimensions.
For this phase we started by the most universal pictograms, in order to get a fast feedback from the client. We got references from the client but also from many other systems and made proposals for the first series. We established a rhythm of one delivery and one feedback per week, as the timing was very tight.
At the end of the project we had 8 fonts and 480 icons
Riojana Iconos-Señaletica Corporativa 1 (95 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Señaletica Corporativa 2 (93 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Señaletica Corporativa 3 (22 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Areas Tematicas 1 (66 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Areas Temáticas 2 (86 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Areas Temáticas 3 (63 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Apps Webs (60 pictograms)
Riojana Iconos-Identidad Riojana (39 pictograms)
3/ The icons
Some of the icons are very simple, but others required a lot of work, here you have samples, where you can appreciate the diversity of thematics but designed with an unified style.
“Brushland, your script font for any occasion” by Laura Meseguer
The Brushland typeface started as a custom project commissioned by Interbrand as a unique typeface that could give a strong personality to the vineyard Azpilicueta. For that, we agreed that a script font could be the best solution, and it became one of the most relevant elements in the last advertising campaign.
The project's nature raised some questions that we solved in the process and its resolution as: How natural should be this script typeface? How to simulate this writing feeling?
The sketching process
I decided to write with my Pentel Pocket Brush Pen on tracing paper, on top of a custom template, later I scanned them and did a simple vectorization (not redrawing) in Illustrator. All the programming was done by Joancarles Casasín.
The tool and some sketches
The Technical Characteristics
Automatic replacement of glyphs
In the case of the typeface especially created for Azpilicueta, our intention was to simulate the character and warmth of handwriting. For this, four different glyphs were drawn for the same character. Through the “Contextual Alternates” OT Feature, the user can decide if they appear or not. This “Feature” or “Behavior”, programmed in the font, combines the variants in the sequence of 1, 2, 3 & 4 and “substitute” the letters at the time the words are composed, in order to avoid the repetition of glyphs (for instance we will not have the same “o” in the same word or line if there are not more than four).
Making a font behave as a handwritten letter within the limits of a typographic system is complex. In order to give more authenticity to the text and to contribute to fluent reading, our typeface will include those ligatures that are more frequent in our language. For example, some letter combinations such as “r r” and “s s” will be replaced by ligatures. The “Ligatures” function is activated by default, the extras are activated with the “Discretional Ligatures” OT feature.
The feature “Contextual Alternates” automatically substitutes the alternative characters, depending on the context. For example, the “r” and the “s” will be replaced with an alternative initial form to make the text more fluid.
Each letter will have a final variant. These soft endings help to suggest the movement of handwritten letters but it also turns out to be more visually harmonious.
All these characteristics contribute to the fact that phrases or texts composed with the Brushland typeface, will give a greater sensation of real writing than the available script fonts. The font has 1,280 glyphs or typographical signs, and allows to compose texts in the most common languages written with the Latin Alphabet.
The 'Homeless Fonts' custom type project
Last Monday 12th of June, Josema Urós from Type-Ø-Tones participated in the Barcelona Design Week, with the occasion of a workshop called Homeless Fonts—Fundació Arrels: “Typefaces that make us visible”
What is ‘Homeless Fonts’?
Homelessfonts is an Arrels Foundation initiative which consists of creating a collection of typefaces based on the handwriting of different homeless people from Barcelona, who agreed to participate in this initiative. The aim is to raise awareness on any potential user of these typefaces: graphic designers and brands. All the benefits of the licensing are used for helping the 1.400 people that are attended by the Foundation with accommodations, food, social and health care.
Some of the fonts were carefully digitized by Josema Urós, who has been collaborating with the Fundació Arrels for a while now, and the other day, at the workshop, he presented the working process.
Definition and objectives of the project
· Creation of a digital typeface based on a casual handwritten alphabet
· Generation of useful alphabets, but most expressive.
· Composition of a Basic Character Set based on the ASCII 256 (Western Latin/MacOs Roman), to be used for 120 languages.
1. Analogic creation of an alphabet
· Pangrams writing · Alphabetical lists A-Z, a-z, 0-9
· Diacritics sequence, punctuation and others
· Less common characters
2. Choosing samples and digitalization
· Selection of samples
· Optimization of the vectorial structure and adaptation of the shapes
· Adjustment of the spacing
· Creation of files suitable for the multiplatform environment.
3. Test and proofing
We will show you the project with some examples
Case 1: José María Erustes
1. Writing. Pangrams, alphabets and numbers from José María Erustes
1. Writing. Alphabets written with differents tools
1. Writing. Diacritics and different signs
2. Digitalization. Scanning in pixel format
2. Digitalization. Vectorial format. Tracing contours
2. Digitalization. Detail of the vectors
2. Digitalization. Preview
2. Digitalization. Full ASCII character set
3. Test and proofing. Samples of text set in paragraphs used to test spacing.
The Design of Multi
Multi is Laura Meseguer's first extensive typeface family. The process of design started as a custom work, developed later and released now as an extended and versatile system for print and screen. It was originally commissioned by the publisher of Dutch regional newspapers in 2011, with the aim to match the serif typefaces (Lexicon by Bram de Does and Tiempos by Kris Sowersby) used for a comprehensive layout overhaul project supervised by editorial art director Luis Mendo. The keywords provided by the client were unequivocal: warm, dynamic, optimistic, friendly, human… Like most of Laura’s typefaces —Rumba, Magasin, Lalola—, vitality bursts forth from Multi. It has a distinctive ‘phrasing’ (in the musical sense), neither humanist nor glyphic, somewhere in between, exploring uncharted territory. Its design is pragmatic, yet not rigid, slightly tinged with tiny incised touches.
Visit the mini site!
Since the completion of this first version, Laura has considerably expanded the character set and the family, and implemented a few modifications.
Multi™ is available in two series: Multi Display and Multi Text.
Multi Display consists of seven roman weights with their italics: Thin, Light, Regular, Medium, Bold, ExtraBold, and Poster. Multi Text consists of three roman weights with their italics: Regular, SemiBold and Bold. All the fonts comprise special characters designed for specific language requirements. They are optimized as webfonts, and the Multi Text fonts are manually hinted. The main purpose is to bring a fresh and strong personality to print and online publications.
Sturdy and fancy bold and breezy, Multi can transform words and sentences into bangs and whispers!
Custom type for the titles of the documentary ‘Barcelona. The Rose of Fire’.
This project was done in collaboration with Mariona Omedes from Nueve Ojos, produced by Media Pro and directed by Manuel Huerga. The documentary is a walk through the city of Barcelona in 3D, carried out in a single plane sequence. An immersive experience where the music, the three-dimensional sound and the narrator, a different one for each language, are protagonists too.
Here you can see the trailer.
The concept of the custom typeface is based on the answer to this question: “Which would be the typeface that best represents the city of Barcelona? That’s a difficult question because Barcelona doesn’t have such a strong and clear typographic identity. The idea came after watching some trailers of the 3D movie, where you can easily see that the streets of Barcelona have a main role. When observing the arquitectural details, and especially the street signs, there is not only one typeface but the geometrical condensed sans serif is dominant.
Logo for the redesigned Dutch newspaper 'Het Parool'
The art directors of Het Parool, John Koning and Floor Koop, requested some proposals for the masthead and logo for the redesigned newspaper, released the past 10th of February 2016. Our work was based on a clear briefing: ‘back to basics’ and design a logo with a strong and powerful identity. I presented different ideas, and final solution is based on a combination of the two typefaces that play a lead role in the new newspaper, Quarto (also the typeface for the headlines) and Tiempos. The new logo not only adorns the front page and the homepage, but is also visible in all expressions of Het Parool.If you want t read more about the redesign of the newspaper you can do it at the newspaper online or here (only in Dutch).
One of the first printed newspapers
The identity in twitter is shown as the isolated P