WIREFRAME was inspired by the “lost” Letraset font BOMBERE, designed by Carla Bombere. Like BLOCKED, Bombere apparently did not make the transition from dry-transfer (rub-down) letters into digital type. Rather than draw this font directly from Bombere, I started again, studying what made it work. I used the basic letterforms of the classic Franklin Gothic, refashioning the G, the 1, and some others. But Franklin Gothic would still make a good companion font. This font uses the principle of the Necker cube, creating a neat visual ambiguity. “A drawing of a wire cube…which spontaneously reverses in depth…was first described by…L…. continued
WILLING RACE is my adaptation of the opening credits of the TV show Will & Grace, originally designed by Number Seventeen. Like those, I’ve mixed large and small caps with roman and italic lowercase, all based on Times Roman. There are alternates of each x-height character for nearly infinite variation. As suggested by Sara, I have added a more accurate (to the show credits) engraved “Modern” style ampersand. BTW, the names in the graphic above were the names projected for 2002 Eastern North Pacific storms. These are all worked out for years in advance with alternating male and female names… continued
TOYNBEE IDEA was inspired by the mysterious Toynbee tiles phenomenon. Like the original tiles, these letters appears to have been cut out with a knife. You may have stepped over this strange crosswalk art and not realized the tiles have been a source of wonder for over 20 years. My photo of a weathered Philadelphia tile is at left; that’s the primary message of the tiles. For more information including a possible explanation, you should watch the 2011 film, Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the Toynbee Tiles. My font suggests how the letters must have looked when first made. The… continued
Alfred Hitchock’s The Birds (1963) is one of my favorite films. This font was inspired by its opening titles which were designed by James S. Pollak. Each name appears in a serifless roman font, then is broken up and reassembled by the images of birds flapping past. The letterforms are my own variation on Optima with certain letters altered to match the film’s. The bird shapes are based on my own photos of swarming crows on Thanksgiving 2004. The result doesn’t match the individual film titles, but suggests the entire sequence of breaking letters and passing birds. An interesting contrast… continued
SUNSET is another special effects font, simulating letters sinking into water and making rippled reflections. The basic letterforms are based on an unreleased condensed version of my Bride of the Monster font. It pushes legibility but could be very effective in the right context. Includes caps, lower case, numbers, punctuation, numbers, and international characters. Oops! Sometimes these special effects fonts have letterforms that can be misread. I was honored and embarrassed to see the Photoshop Disaster at left, in which Sunset played a role. Not every font is good for every word or phrase!
The Regular and Jumbled versions of STAMP ACT were made from scans of cheap commercial rubber stamps. The awkward design of the letters suggests a vintage packing crate. A big font company sells something called Rubber Stamp but this, and my other rubber stamp fonts which can be found on this site, are more like real stamping. The jumbled version has randomized placement. These fonts have been revised to include two of each uppercase letter, plus numbers, punctuation, and international characters.
SKIDZ was inspired by a sticker in which the letters where superimposed over a tire tread pattern. I’ve created my own tread pattern, subtracting letters based on Max Kaufmann’s classic font Balloon. When you type, the letters align to form an entire tire mark with white letters. The brackets and underscore can be used to create natural-shaped ends and patterned space between words. SKIDZ contains caps, numbers, punctuation, and international characters. But they’re a bit lost in the edge of the tread, so I’ve made a separate font, SKIDZ EXTRA, with an extra line of somewhat sharper tread pattern to… continued
SCREWBALL looks like whimsical hand-lettering. It’s unpredictable with lots of close-fitting pairs. It was inspired by the hand-lettered titles of the movie What’s Up, Doc? (1972), designed by The Golds West Inc. Version 1.5 includes an expanded character set and many alternate characters that make use of Opentype features to create a more hand-lettered look, as well as improved spacing and kerning. What’s Up, Doc? is a personal favorite, directed by Peter Bogdanovich, starring Barbra Streisand, Ryan O’Neal, and, in her first film, the late Madeline Kahn, to whose memory this font is dedicated.
RADIO was inspired by the old logo of NPR, National Public Radio. Obviously, the line pattern suggests broadcasting. The letters are square and of a uniform width, great for short headings, drop caps, and the like. Includes caps, numbers, punctuation, and international characters.
Instead of making something that people want, that I could sell, I made this silly experiment: PRETZ. The idea is that each letter has been broken, cut, or chewed out of a conventional twisted pretzel shape. As I only cheated on a couple of characters ($ ¢ ¥ Œ Æ), you have to use a bit of imagination to read them all. It comes in both Salted and Unsalted varieties. Each font contains caps, numbers, punctuation, and international characters.