GAWD, I Hate the Letter “S”!

Javan Hamilton

June 1, 2012

GAWD, I Hate the Letter “S”!

Javan Hamilton

June 1, 2012

Let me clarify: the letter “S” is one of my favorite letters of the alphabet. Why? Well, it’s very versatile and it was one of my first “favorite letters,” if not THE first. The Press Your Luck logo is my favorite form of the letter “S,” serving as inspiration for my BigBox family of fonts.

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But the letter “S,” in my opinion, is the harderst to design.

Right now, I’m at work designing a font named after my youngest goddaughter Derielle, loosely based on the IKEA logo. I mean, it’s the perfect name! The characters are plump, perky and beautiful just like my baby girl (and then my grandmother makes a much-welcomed surprise visit as I type this). This is my first time designing a font that isn’t based on oblongs and slab serifs. Keeping in mind that I design my characters in PowerPoint, I tried my best to create my uppercase “S” using ovals, but to no avail. However, I managed to lay groundwork so that I can create a custom shape from the ovals. But for some reason, it still looked crappy. This is when I relied on the good ol’ customized version of Bodoni used in the CBS logo.

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By George, I think I’ve got it! The gears began to click; for nearly every font that features a rounded “S,” the upper hook is recessed from the edge of the character. For those that aren’t very wordy, recessed from is basically another way of saying behind. Take a good look at the CBS logo again. Below is a sample of the lettering. Basically, it describes what I’m about to dig into for lunch.

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Either way, it’s still a work in progress. I know for a fact, though, that kerning’s gonna be a bitch. And then I still have lowercase to do! Oy…

–Javan H.


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5 Comments

  1. Merger Verger

    Don’t forget the “S” in the old (50s and 60s) logo for Howard Johnson’s. Worth a look.

    Reply
  2. mlblogsjdhernandez

    Hi, Doug Morris suggested I drop you a line after seeing what, at first glance, looked like the PYL font. Sure enough, it is! Do you actually have that font made? Please let me know, thanks!

    Reply
    • Javan H.

      Hello! Thanks for your interest. I do actually have the font made.

      Reply
    • Javan H.

      K. I sent them over to you.

      Reply

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