text to test font spacing?

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paleolith
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text to test font spacing?

Post by paleolith » Mon Aug 08, 2005 11:28 pm

Does anyone know of a corpus of English text designed for testing font spacing? I'm thinking in terms of a text that reads like normal language (so that I'm not poring over every letter) but which also contains nearly all the letter combinations likely to be encountered, so that serious spacing problems will jump out at the eye.

Background: I'm making a font of my wife's handwriting -- she's an artist. Thanks to Johan Brandstedt for his tutorial! Her handwriting is not connected and is quite slanted, so it's going to need a lot of kerning. If you can't guess, I'm a complete beginner. Also, it's quite possible that I'll never create another font. This will be for private use only, to create printed products, so I can leave lots of details to be resolved when and if we ever need to. Use will probably be 99% English, so non-English issues mostly fall in the category of "leave it for later", though I expect to create a basic set of accented letters for western European languages. I did pay for FCP Pro, since the auto-kerning is an obvious capability to use in this case, but I already know that I'll need to do a lot of adjusting. For the curious, a sample of what I've done so far is at http://paleo.org/prsample.gif -- I converted text at 16pt to a 150dpi bitmap; I leave it as an exercise for the reader to figure out whether the resulting size matches my printout. ;-)

Edward

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Kerning vs Side-bearings

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Tue Aug 09, 2005 5:26 am

This is something that confuses a lot of those new to font editing. They think they need kerning when what they need to do is adjust the side-bearings carefully.

The left side-bearing is usually set at zero but the glyph can be moved left or right in the character cell. If you look at Lucida Handwriting, for example, you will see that the letters tend to be offset slightly to the right of the x=0 left side-bearing. The right side-bearing tends to be small or may be negative. The way to get the side-bearings right is by using the comparison toolbar and scrolling through your font with different pairs of letters showing to the left and right of the current glyph. Any spacing errors will quickly become apparent. With joined writing like in the font below, the spacing has to be very precise. Note that kerning is off.

Image

Only when you have finished adjusting the side-bearings do you need to add kerning which adjusts the spacing between individual letter pairs. An alphabet of only lowercase letters abc..xyz shouldn't need any kerning. AV, AT, TA, or Av, Te, To, etc., do often need to be kerned. FC5 Pro has an auto-kerning feature that will take most of the hard work out of doing this.

If the results of auto-kerning look too tight, clear the kern values and try again with a different value for the minimum white space between characters. The default is 100 which is the least one would want for a font with 2048 funits per em (the default for new fonts on format, settings). The easiest method is to import kerning pairs from a file. Font Creator has a couple of presets you can use. You don't need to manually select kerning pairs, though you can if you wish to.
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Dick Pape
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Post by Dick Pape » Tue Aug 09, 2005 5:33 am

Congratulations paleolith -- A Complete Font! Some of us wait an awful long time before putting one together.

The more familiar psuedo Latin sample text is:
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consetetur sadipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliquyam erat, sed diam voluptua. At vero eos et accusam et justo duo dolores et ea rebum. Stet clita kasd gubergren, no sea takimata sanctus est Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoreet dolore magna aliquam erat volutpat. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation ullamcorper suscipit lobortis nisl ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis autem vel eum iriure dolor in hendrerit in vulputate velit esse molestie consequat, vel illum dolore eu feugiat nulla facilisis at vero eros et accumsan et iusto odio dignissim qui blandit praesent luptatum zzril delenit augue duis dolore te feugait nulla facilisi.

Epsum factorial non deposit quid pro quo hic escorol. Olypian quarrels et gorilla congolium sic ad nauseum. Souvlaki ignitus carborundum e pluribus unum. Defacto lingo est igpay atinlay. Marquee selectus non provisio incongruous feline nolo contendre. Gratuitous octopus niacin, sodium glutimate. Quote meon an estimate et non interruptus stadium. Sic tempus fugit esperanto hiccup estrogen. Glorious baklava ex librus hup hey ad infinitum. Non sequitur condominium facile et geranium incognito. Epsum factorial non deposit quid pro quo hic escorol. Marquee selectus non provisio incongruous feline nolo contendre Olypian quarrels et gorilla congolium sic ad nauseum. Souvlaki ignitus carborundum e pluribus unum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet. Con minimim venami quis nostrud laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea com dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate nonumi. Mimimum veniami ex ea con dolor nisi ut aliquip. Consequat Duis autem vel eum iruire dolor in endrerit, voluptate velit est. Sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummi. Euismod tincidunt ut laroeet dolore magna aliquam erat voluptat.
And so on... I have a quote which is probably 5 times longer, but you get the idea!

Dick Pape

paleolith
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Post by paleolith » Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:51 am

Thanks for the responses. I'm going out of town for a few days, but I'll be playing with the comparison window as time permits -- I had not previously found that. Also the predefined list of kerning pairs -- I think I'd read about loading from a file but missed that FCP has such a file.

How do you use the comparison window? It seems to me that what I need is to scroll through the previous/following characters, which means that I constantly hit backspace and the next letter, and that only changes one of the two. I can change the focus character just by clicking the arrow, but that doesn't seem to help me adjust the bearings for one character.

I do know that I'll still need a lot of kerning, especially between uppercase and lowercase. I've gone through several letters, and whether I adjust the bearings or kern them, the numbers are not the same from one adjacent letter to the next. It's an artist's handwriting, not a graphic designer's. ;-)

Yeah, I know about lorem ipsum, and lipsum.com. I was hoping for something known to actually include a lot of the important and problematic pairs. Also to include upper/lower combinations (though of course I can take any passage and change it to title case with a word processor). Oh well.

Later,

Edward

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Aug 10, 2005 9:33 am

Changing the letters in the comparison toolbar is slow, but scrolling through the alphabet with Alter Left/Right arrow is very fast. I check capital letters between a pair of "H"s and lowercase between a pair of "o"s. Then I try with different pairs. Also use the Preview toolbar. Just type "a" in the preview toolbar to get a full alphabet to preview.
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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: text to test font spacing?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Jan 29, 2015 1:03 pm

rachyl5656tip020 wrote:I would like to create my personal font using my hand writing, can it be possible?
Why not? Scan it at high resolution, and open the scan in IrfanView or a similar bitmap viewer. Select one letter at a time and paste it into the appropriate glyph in FontCreator.

See my tutorial on Scanning an Entire Alphabet
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