• Global community
    • Language:
      • Deutsch
      • English
      • Español
      • Français
      • Português
  • 日本語コミュニティ
    Dedicated community for Japanese speakers
  • 한국 커뮤니티
    Dedicated community for Korean speakers

How would I go about creating my own font?

Explorer ,
Oct 22, 2011 Oct 22, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

I can't find the 'perfect' font for a particular logo.  How would I go about creating my own?

I have Illustrator and Photoshop.

Assuming I could create a set of alphabetic characters, would I be able to use them via Photoshop in the same way other PS fonts work?

thanks,

Paz

TOPICS
How to

Views

35.5K

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines

correct answers 1 Correct answer

Enthusiast , Oct 22, 2011 Oct 22, 2011

Illustrator and Photoshop are not enough. You need a font editing tool, such as FontLab Studio, FontForge, Fontographer, TypeTool, or Glyphs. They range in price from open source (free) to $600+. They allow you to turn a "set of alphabetic characters" into a font, and help with creating those glyphs.

But having the software isn't the same as knowing what to do with it, any more than having Photoshop makes you a photographer. Your question is kind of like saying you can't find a good piece of musi

...

Likes

Translate

Translate
Enthusiast ,
Oct 22, 2011 Oct 22, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Illustrator and Photoshop are not enough. You need a font editing tool, such as FontLab Studio, FontForge, Fontographer, TypeTool, or Glyphs. They range in price from open source (free) to $600+. They allow you to turn a "set of alphabetic characters" into a font, and help with creating those glyphs.

But having the software isn't the same as knowing what to do with it, any more than having Photoshop makes you a photographer. Your question is kind of like saying you can't find a good piece of music to have playing at your wedding reception, so how do you go about creating a symphony? Or you don't like the chair you've been sitting in, so how do you create a replacement? It's not that these things are impossible to learn, but the relevant skills are a substantial investment of time and energy.

My serious answer would be study on your own for a year or so, and apply to the appropriate Master's degree program at the University of Reading (UK), or the Royal Academy in the Hague. Or the new program just starting up in Buenos Aires.

Cheers,

T

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Jul 11, 2016 Jul 11, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Wrong. This doesn't answer the question. Why is it listed as the correct answer?

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Enthusiast ,
Jan 06, 2017 Jan 06, 2017

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Since I wrote my original reply over five years ago, things have changed for the better. There are far more readily available resources, both online and offline, than there were five years ago.

Here is my page of resources for type design and font making, which I started three years ago (and update occasionally): general overview, books, classes, and links on all kinds of specific type design topics, from Adobe character sets to Unicode.

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Contributor ,
Oct 22, 2011 Oct 22, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

If all you really need are the letters for the logo, why don't you

simply create the logo in illustrator? Some of your design may be in the

shape of a word or letters, but they needn't be from a font. Most major

commercial logos are uniquely drawn and do NOT use fonts. See, for

example, Coca Cola, Adobe, and McDonalds. Unassociated people may have

created a font based on those logos, but not the other way around.

If you plan to use the same typestyle for arbitrary headlines or text,

that's a different matter entirely - see Mr. Phinney's reply, which may

in fact make it look too easy! Text fonts are infinitely more difficult

than just a few nicely designed letters.

- Herb

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Enthusiast ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

With due respect to Herb, often logos are a combination of a regular typeface and a graphic design. Sometimes the typeface is modified, sometimes not. Even among his three examples, Adobe's logo uses Myriad, McDonald's golden arches are a graphic, but used to be accompanied by the word "McDonald's" in Helvetica (if I recall correctly), and Although the Coca-Cola logotype is custom, for Diet Coke I believe the word "Coke" is set in a normal typeface (Times, IIRC).

That being said, completely custom lettering and modified (even heavily modified) font usage are both quite common for logos as well.

Cheers,

T

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Jun 21, 2017 Jun 21, 2017

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Actually, Adobe does use a logo font, internal use only, for its logo.

And it is now based on Adobe Clean, an internal use only font, and no longer Myriad.

     - Dov

- Dov Isaacs, former Adobe Principal Scientist (April 30, 1990 - May 30, 2021)

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Mentor ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

To put it another way, and with all respect, anyone who needs to post the question is at least years away from acquiring the necessary skills to create a font.   

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Contributor ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Tai Lao said:

"To put it another way, and with all respect, anyone who needs to post

the question is at least years away from acquiring the necessary skills

to create a font."

That's a bit harsh. While it might be true if the desired end result is

a quality text font, there are simple and inexpensive - even free - ways

to produce functioning fonts - particularly if they're for a limited

purpose.

These include various services that produce a font from your handwriting

(you don't HAVE to submit your pigeon-scratches, you CAN submit nicely

drawn images of letters or even clipart). There's also the free on-line

Fontstruct.com.

No, you won't produce a multi-language multi-weight artistically

superior, coordinated font family, but you WILL get something, and some

of the results, particularly for display fonts, can be quite striking.

- Herb

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

"These include various services that produce a font from your handwriting "

Just now seeing this.  We must have cross posted, Herb. 

That's exactly what I had in mind.  Having worked as a professional artist most of my life, I can do handwriting - calligraphy well enough when needed.  Does FontStruct work this way?

thanks,

Paz

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Contributor ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Re - Fontstruct - go to the website ( www.fontstruct.com )and see what

it does and how it works. Essentially you use building blocks to put

letters together. Go to the gallery to see what people have done with

it. The individual letters/glyphs range from simple to very complex; the

fonts as a whole are simple, and truetype only, if I recall.

- Herb

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Oct 24, 2011 Oct 24, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Got it. 

Thanks again, everyone,

I'm looking into all the suggestions...except the Mac only one.

Paz

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
New Here ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

I would just like to point out how much I appreciate those who provide resources instead of displaying their personal insecurities while subjecting others to their negativity and undue criticism.

We were all once beginners.

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
New Here ,
Jan 05, 2017 Jan 05, 2017

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

thx @barkmix thank you for calling it out, i wanted to say the exact same thing! the presumptions made here about the original questioner are so arrogant. To the folks who simply answered with App suggestions... thank you!

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
May 06, 2016 May 06, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Hi _Paz_

If you are still interested in creating your own font, there's now also a simple extension for Illustrator CC that works on both Mac & PC: www.fontself.com

You'll be able to design, edit & preview your font right from your favorite vector editing tool.

Feel free to ask if you have any question about it

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Jul 11, 2016 Jul 11, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

What if I just spent the last 5 days designing my font in Photoshop? As of right now, each character is a layer. What steps would I need to take to turn them into a working font without having to design them all over again?

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
New Here ,
Jun 21, 2017 Jun 21, 2017

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

I would like to add to this in agreement and also disagree with whoever said you should apply for a master in developing typeface ..... don't waste the money. You have the internet at you disposal so be diligent and study.

im also studying graphic design and I work in a marketing dept and am very tired of the fonts I have. I also think font is a way to brand so I think if you had an ongoing project it might be useful to have a special font to use only for a specific client.

a step by step might be nice. If I figure it out I'll repost for you.

stay curious

jay

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Oct 23, 2011 Oct 23, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

Thanks for the info on software for font creation.  I figured there must be some.

     "Your question is kind of like saying you can't find a good..."
Yeah, that's me.  I wanted a house but I couldn't afford what I wanted so I studied what I needed to know until we ( two of us) built it, from digging the trenches for the foundation to the roof. Everything but the septic tank.  County regulations.

I hadn't really thought about taking someone else's font and adapting it, but that's a good idea, that is, if it's considered ethical.

What I want is a script that can flow from page header to page header for website and business cards.  Not too delicate.  Not too bold.  Not grunge, but not too frilly either.  I've searched through hundreds of them and none is exactly right.

I'll keep at it.  Thanks for the software recommendations again,

Paz

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Enthusiast ,
Oct 24, 2011 Oct 24, 2011

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

I will just note that given what you want to do FontStruct probably may not work out. One thing it really can't do is script, handwriting or calligraphy fonts. It's about assembling letter shapes from sort of building blocks and shape primitives. Though it is very cool and fun, and perhaps worth checking out for those reasons alone. 

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
New Here ,
May 21, 2015 May 21, 2015

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

You can design the letters in Photoshop or Illustrator then use Handwriting font creator.  Simply fill in the boxes with your creations and then you can install and type with it.  Good luck!

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Community Beginner ,
Apr 25, 2016 Apr 25, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

HEY PAZ!!!!

Just for the record---- No backhanded comments will be coming out of my post

with that being said,

all I did was:

1. write out the words, and letters I needed for my project,

2. used an app called "genius scan" and scanned(took a picture) of the words, and emailed myself that document in pdf form.

3. I opened that PDF in illustrator, then used image trace

4. I clicked Expand, and VOILA~ paths, and points galore

I hope this helped, or at least made sense.

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Explorer ,
Jul 11, 2016 Jul 11, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

My issue is that I am not trying to make a font using any typical alphabet. I have already designed my "font" in Photoshop (it's a code I've been writing in by hand that began in high school, 20 years ago, I can now read & write it fluently), but think of it more as symbols or wingdings. Now, all I need is to bring them to life as an actual font. Is there a free online tool where I can upload each image to make this happen?

I recently became disabled and can no longer handwrite. I'd really like to get this going. Please, no snarky responses!

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
Adobe Employee ,
Jul 11, 2016 Jul 11, 2016

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

I think Fontself is what you need. The Illustrator plug-in is already available, but the Photoshop version is not.

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines
New Here ,
Sep 14, 2017 Sep 14, 2017

Copy link to clipboard

Copied

LATEST

Seriously check out _Frans and MiguelSousa's solution, FontSelf. It now supports PHOTOSHOP!!! Just installed it. Good luck!

Likes

Translate

Translate

Report

Report
Community guidelines
Be kind and respectful, give credit to the original source of content, and search for duplicates before posting. Learn more
community guidelines