-Special Effects-

POPSTARS was inspired by the hand lettering on the cover of the classic Beatles album, Magical Mystery Tour. The B from Beatles is about actual size at left; weren’t vinyl album covers great? This pair of fonts can be used separately or layered as in the animation on this page. Each font includes caps, lower case, numbers, punctuation, and international characters.

PIECES is designed to look like a partially assembled jigsaw puzzle. The letters interlock automatically as you type. Use _ | or \ instead of a space to connect your words. The basic letterforms are my “unicase” takeoff on Freeman Craw’s ubiquitous Ad Lib font (1961). This font has the letters on the white background in the uppercase positions and with the black background in the lowercase positions. TyPiNg LiKe ThIs creates an alternating effect. Due to space limitations, it does not contain the complete character set in both black and white. There’s a separate complete font in Black and… continued

PESSIMA combines elegance and corrosion. It was inspired by the opening titles of the film Invasion of the Body Snatchers (the 1978 version, my favorite, directed by Philip Kaufman, titles by Pacific Title). It appears to be a corroded, bold version of Optima*, Hermann Zapf’s classic “serifless roman” from 1958. In the film, the corrosion varies from letter to letter and cleverly suggests the biologic horror to come. This is not the original Optima* of gentle curves, but my jagged re-drawing of it. Despite the battering, the overall shapes are still somewhat recognizable. My font is more striated, less randomly… continued

Like its predecessors Calaveras and Heartland, PEACE is a take-off on the classic 60s flower font Daisyland*. Includes 2 versions of each letter, plus numbers, punctuation, and international characters. Inspired by Albany’s 15 minutes of fame; read about it at thesmokinggun.com. *The Daisyland font appears under that name in the Dan X. Solo font books from Dover. There is a nice shareware version called FLORALIES by Keith Field and a free but bumpy adaptation (called Daisyland and uncredited) in FontPak1.zip. (Thanks to Frogii for the information!)

NEUROTOXIN is designed to look like the letters are breaking up or forming from pixels. It was inspired by the Xerox Corporation’s former X logo, designed in 1994 by Landor Associates. The basic letterforms are modeled after a bold Didone-type font. Pairs with a nice Bodoni or even Times Roman. Version 2.0 includes an expanded character set with lowercase and improved spacing and kerning.

GOOD VIBES is my digital version of the Letraset font “Good Vibrations” designed by Trevor Hatchett and released in 1973. Janet Wilson, one of my dear font correspondents, sent me a scan of an unused sheet of the Letraset original. In redrawing the font, I’ve maintained the same number of lines per character and the uniform width of the Hatchett design. Not entirely successful here–the gradient stripes can turn to strobing, dithering detail onscreen. It’s much better used BIG in print (>60 pt.) With rub-down Letraset you would have been able to choose to use parts of letters; I haven’t… continued

ECHO was inspired by a psychedelic-era poster in which the letters were given a similar vibrating feel. The basic letterforms are similar to Helvetica, which would go nicely with this. Includes caps, numbers, punctuation, and international characters.

BRICKLETTER was inspired by Jeff Levine’s interlocking all-brick font “Off the Wall.” I took the brick idea that and added letters based on Max Kaufmann’s classic font Balloon. Each letter fits with the next to create a brick wall emblazoned with bold graffiti. The brackets and underscore can be used to create square ends and bricked space. Parodied on Something Awful as “Bricks of Failure…What could make a font read better than putting a bunch of bricks behind it? Absolutely nothing! It’s perfect!” This font contains caps, numbers, punctuation, and international characters.

BEAD CHAIN and MARQUEE are a pair of fonts that are made up of dots. BEAD CHAIN suggests a string of pearls while MARQUEE offers your name in lights. Inspired by a book jacket from the 1920s or 30s, I’ve used the stately letterforms of Gill Sans as my guide, although most letters had to be reshaped to fit the beads. Version 1.5 includes an expanded character set, improved spacing and kerning.

In LAB RAT, each letter is a simple maze.  Each letter connects to the next to make any word (or numeric expression) into a more complicated, though still left-to-right, labyrinth. (The starting point was the square-shouldered forms of the old Apple system font Chicago.) It must be seen large to be fully appreciated. The demo version contains enough to give you the idea of how nicely it works. The full version contains the complete alphabet, numbers, and punctuation. .

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