How To Create Fonts In Illustrator | How To Create A Custom Font In Illustrator

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How To Create A Custom Font In Illustrator

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Okay, so have you ever designed your own vector letters and then got stuck looking for an easy way to transform those letter designs into a real working font. Yep, me too, that’s. Why in this video that is in partnership with font self? I’m going to show you the best add-on for Photoshop and illustrator to help you create your own custom fonts [Music]. Once upon a time, there was a designer and he loved designing letters. It was fun and creative, but he always hit the same roadblock. How can I turn my magnificent letter Designs into a real working font? The designer knew the software out there already, but it was daunting, expensive and hot. Then he started using font self the end and now. I’m going to show you just how easy is to transform your font design into a real working font in. Let’s say under 30 seconds. Congratulations, you’ve already designed your letters and they are magnificent. Now you’re ready to drag your letters directly into the font self panel. Click the smart button. Select your preferences and continue by selecting the smart spacing and kerning button. Click install. And give your font an incredible name. There we go done your custom. Font can now be used as live text. Okay, so that happened pretty fast, so let’s just rewind a bit and go through the entire process in a bit more detail, Righty-o so we’re now in Adobe Illustrator, and you can see I’ve created a new document. The size of this artboard is a thousand pixels wide and a thousand pixels high, And I’m also wearing pajamas. If you’re interested, so what I’m gonna do first is just acknowledge this alphabet down here. Now if I just zoom in so you can see. These are actually the letters from my logo. So I designed the Danske logo a little while ago now. And then I built this out into a font, so I have a lowercase uppercase, and there are also actually some numbers and punctuation, like full stops. Question marks exclamation marks. That kind of thing so first of all. I’m going to show you how to create your own letters, but we’ll come back to this bit and I’ll show you how to turn this all into a fully working font using font self. Okay, so first of all, I’m gonna go and create a shape and that shape is a rectangle, not particularly interesting, however, if you want to create letters in this way. This is absolutely viable. Well, they’re for me personally. I prefer to create with lines so using the line tool, the arc tool, the pen tool, things like this. Just so you get those nice, smooth curves, and if you follow my work at all, you’ll know that I like my geometric shapes and my my perfection and very much, a perfectionist when it comes to my design work, so you’ll see here at the moment. I’ve created a quarter segment and we have no fill or stroke, so I’m just going to double Click on the stroke. We’ll give this a color black and then from the stroke panel on the right. If you don’t see this by the way and you are on an older version of Illustrator, go up to window and you get all of the different panels here, including stroke, however, because I’m on the latest version of Illustrator CC. I’ve got the properties panel over here, which is contextual and for some reason. My color has gone back to white, So I’m just gonna change this back to black there. We go much thicker line and what I can do is I could hold alt or option and drag to duplicate This hover over here. Rotate, hold shift to snap that rotation. And you can see these nicely snap together. I’ve got these smart guides here popping up all over the place. Go up to view down to snap to point. Keep that turned on. Have your smart guides turned on as well. If it doesn’t snap, just zoom in nice and close and it’s always a good idea to go into outline mode, which is command or control. Y and you can see. We’ve got a tiny bit of overlap here. Shame on you, smart guides boom there. We go now. The main selection tool is great for selecting shapes. However, the direct selection tool here is great for selecting anchor points so I can drag over these two anchor points that are touching, go to object down to path and select join. Now when I select is with the main selection tool, I’ve created one shape out of these two quarter segments. So now I can come out of outline mode and then just grab the pencil. Drag this down holding shift. It wants to continue that line press escape or go up to select deselect and we’ll carry this down here and then. I’m gonna do one right across the middle. Hey, I’ve created an a now. This is a giant a for this heart board. Your letters don’t need to be this big now. I like creating my letters or strokes, because then I can adjust the width of those strokes like so, makes it easier to make a lighter, regular, a bold, an extra super uber bold. If you like once you’ve created the main letter forms, so there’s an a that I’ve created, that’s great. I guess, and then what I can do is I could maybe use the ellipse tool. Illustrator is going to remember that width, and then I can go and use the various line tools, pen tools and then start generating additional letters. And then I can select these and bump up. That stroke, like so fantastic now the moment I’m just showing you how to create letters what I can also do is go to view down to rulers and select show rulers. And you’ve got the shortcut there, and if I drag from the top, you can see that I can create some guides, and I would definitely do this properly for my own fun, and I would encourage you to do this as well and then you can just line everything up with the guides properly. There we go and we can also go up here down to guides and then we’ve got the shortcut here to hide and show the guides, and you can also lock the more unlock them as well, so I’m gonna hide them and we’ll hide the rulers as well, so that’s one way that you can start creating letters and that is generally albeit with a little bit more precision time and care. That is how I created the danske font that you can see down here. However, we can also create our own fonts by using pencil and paper old-school. I know now what I’ve done here Is you can see. I have a JPEG. That’s popped out in the center. This is something that I drew on the iPad so you could use early iPad with the Apple pencil. You can draw pencil and paper. You can take a photo of it top down. Get that into illustrator that way, or if your fancy use a scanner so design all your letters or a few letters, scan them in, get them into illustrator, and I’ve opened this in a new document. Here now, just go to file and down to place navigate to the image of your font. Whether it’s from phone scanner tablet wherever it’s from, this is just basically a JPEG, a flat image. So what we’re gonna do with this is select it first to go to object down to image trace and select make an illustrator kindly warns us that this might be quite slow because these letters are massive, So we’re just gonna click. OK, that’s absolutely fine. Giant letters are cool, and it looks very similar Because I drew this on a tablet with an Apple pencil. The lines are going to be very clean, But if you’ve done something hand-drawn it might look a little different. Essentially, what illustrator has just done is convert your drawing. Whether it’s hand-drawn or tablet drawn into a vector graphic. So now you can scale it to any size without a loss in quality now. There’s also a panel over here. This is the image trace panel. Remember, go to window down to image trace there? You go let me get lots and lots of options here now. We can tinker around with the threshold. You probably won’t see much difference in this example, because it’s already pretty clean. You might see a slight difference, but if you’ve got a hand-drawn drawing, increasing, the threshold will retain more of the detail. And if you bring it down, there will be less detail and you’ve also got the. Advanced tab here where you get a lot more settings. So you can, Tink with? All of these make sure preview is checked at the bottom, and you get a real-time preview of how your letters are being traced, so once you’re done and you’re happy, go up to object and down to expand, leave object and fill selected and click. OK, there we go. This is all final now. This next step is quite important and the reason. I’ve created a separate document because this is where things can go a little bit wrong. So if I jump into outline mode, remember that’s command or control. Y you’ll see it looks like this. Now this bounding box around the edge that is going to cause some problems, And if I select this go to object Ungroup, you’ve got the shortcut over here and I’ll just ungroup this all a few times. If I move the D around. For example, we get this kind of weirdness happening, and that is no good so the way that I get around. This is by adding all of this into a new document doing the trace in a new document and then just grabbing the Magic Wand Tool making sure. I magic one, select the black, and you’ll know it’s done correctly because you’ll see black over here as the fill in the color picker and then what I do is go to edit and cut. This will remove it from the document, but also copy it to the clipboard, and if I jump back into outline mode or just hover over this image here, you can see, we have all these random anchor points. These are artifacts left behind. We’re gonna drag over everything and press. Delete or backspace to remove it. Go to edit down to paste in place and boom. We have only our letters no unnecessary anchor points and this is just going to reduce the chance that you’re gonna have any problems and keep things a lot simpler when creating your font. Now, these are all individual items, which is great because we don’t want to group them together, so I can drag over these and then go to edit and copy jump back to the main document. Go to edit and paste, not paste in place. Paste it! Wherever you like, so there we go, We have three letters, and I drew these literally just now before recording this video. These are very, very hand-drawn and not the best. I’m sure you can do much better, but they will serve the purpose so I can demonstrate font self. So once you have font self installed, go to window down to extensions, and you’ve got font self maker here and then click this and youll. Get this panel here you can see. I’ve docked mine here now. I’m actually going to expand mine for the rest of this tutorial. We’ll just shift that over there just so you can see what’s happening. And once you’ve created your font, You’ve expanded your letters. Everything is all good, just select all of these different objects, so three individual objects here and drag them in now. I don’t have 26 letters or 10 numbers, so I’m just gonna drag the characters down here. So, as it says, this can be letters, numbers, accents, punctuation, etc. There we go, so we’ve got the three letters now. Sometimes font surf will recognize what the letters are. If it doesn’t, that’s fine, just click in this box and just help it along there. We go da n now. I’ve got this and I can just type up here. Those three letters. Those are the only letters that I have in this font. And I must just show you this because I absolutely love this. If you hover over new, look what the tooltip says really need help on this one. These guys are so cheeky! I love it and basically is Pat easy to get your hand drawn letters into font self. However, I’m gonna do the next bit with an entire alphabet and show you some of font selves other features, so let’s go ahead and click new. Yes, we’ll create a new font and then what I can do is simply just grab the main selection tool. Drag over my letters, and I’m gonna do this with the lowercase alphabet. Drag it here now. If you do have 26 letters, exactly then you can just drag it here on to lowercase, and you can see. Font self identifies all of the different letters, But like I say, if it doesn’t just give it a helping hand and pop the respective letter in here, and then I could go through and do this with my uppercase letters, My numbers punctuation, but I’m actually going to show you how to open a fun so anything you’ve made with font self you can go here. We will open this and here’s a few fonts that. I’ve made already, so we’ll go to my desktop tutorial, and we have, and Dan Sans my first working font. Click open. And there you go, so you can see all of the different characters down here if I just scroll up and down and I can go in here and type. Something quick brown fence jumps over. Lazy fox. Wears it dog fence. I can’t even spell lets. Get rid of that, So there is the font. We can adjust the letter spacing by using the plus and minus here. We’ve got line spacing scale, so we could make them bigger or smaller for me for the most part. I just leave them. All set at the default, and we’ve got some Advanced Options here as well. So you can see we have spacing selected here, so we can adjust the spacing for all of our letters or glyphs. You can then preview them in here, so you can see how different things lurk and all the spacing. You’ve then got kerning over here as well, so you’ve got kerning for your pairs and kerning for your group’s. Kerning is the spacing between letters but also specific letters, so the spacing between a let’s say a tee and a Y is quite different to an O and an A and you can see that a lot of my spacing looks pretty good, and whilst I’d love to take credit for this, I can’t, because if I go home, essentially, what I’ve done is imported all of my glyphs, my characters, and I’ve gone down to smart and you click this, And it says, spaced and curl all your glyphs in one click. Yes, that’s right, you can literally do this automatically in one. Click and believe me. I spent several hours doing this. Before this feature even existed, it took me hours and it still wasn’t as good as what this does now so you can adjust a maximum space You’d like around any vertical shapes. And it also says that this feature is still in development. But I’ve got to be honest, It’s incredible, so smart space and Kurn boom done, and it says down here. You just saved 12 hours and 25 minutes. No, no, no font self, let’s be real. You just saved me an entire week trying to do this myself and I like this. It tells you exactly what it’s done as. Well, so there you go. That’s pretty impressive. Look at that! Wow, the quick smart metrics. Jump over the lazy designer. I’m not lazy, I’m just terrible at kerning, and even once it’s done all that you can go back into advance, and you can see exactly what it’s done here, so this gives you a massive head start, and then you can go in there and tweak things if you want to, so you get full control over everything with font self, but if you are lazy, or you just find kerning and spacing too challenging like myself, then you have the smart spacing and kerning option there. Okay, so a few other things that are really useful. Font infos! You can credit yourself up here. You can choose whether the style is regular, bold italic. All that good stuff you can give your font family and name you can copyright it trademark it. You can say who it’s manufactured by all this stuff here. Very useful, lets. Go back down in the bottom left corner. We can change a few things like the glyph background, so we can preview it slightly differently on a dark background, transparency or white, we can also adjust the live preview over here with the COG we can Center our text. We can make it bigger, so we get a nice big preview and again we can adjust the background, see how it looks on a darker background or a transparent background, but for the most part. I just leave this as is, and if you do get stuck. You’ve got a chat option down here. Hi, Daniel! Ask us anything and you can start a conversation or search for an answer here. So if you do get stuck with anything. These guys are right here to help you. Which is awesome. So once you’ve done everything you’ve created your font, you can then go to install, and you can see the tooltip here says for it straighter, only so this is like a temporary install just for illustrator, so you can try out your font. If you want to save this as an OT F go to save, you can give it a name and save it there, so I’m gonna go to install, and you can see this font already exists. So if I go and just change that name, so we’ll call it something different, fantastic font. There we go go back to home install, and there we go now. If you don’t give this a name, it’ll just ask you to name it there and then and what I can do now is click here type some text. Maybe throw in a bit of lorem ipsum if you have it to hand and then from illustrator’s character Drop-down I can search for fantastic Font press return, boom! There you go, The text is now editable, and I can type whatever I like and you can see. Everything is automatically spaced and kerned brilliantly. And if you want to make any changes to your letters, your characters, your glyphs, you can do that here. You can adjust the spacing. Just go to install again, Click install, and it will update any changes within your document, and as I say when you finish and you maybe want to distribute this share it with someone you can go up to save and it will actually save that as a font file. Now you can also go up here to the menu icon in the top right corner, and you get a few useful things here if you’re interested, but now we’ve finished our phone. It’s all done, we’re going to catapult it, so we’ve got this option here. And, as it says in the description, you can use your font online with font self catapult, So we’ll click this, yes. Your Font has been catapulted. Here’s the support from various browsers so a view in my default browser, which happens to be Chrome. And there we go, so we have our font. We can change the text there in the preview we can click on text. I love this exciting. Times New Roman. You can keep clicking this. It will keep changing two things that at least. I find quite entertaining, so this is quite fun. You can adjust the color of the preview. You can adjust the background. Oh, that is awful, sorry. I do apologize for that. Let’s change that to something a bit better there we go. We can adjust the size, make that smaller or larger. Please help me, please help me with my color choices. We can go and share the preview. Now we can also use our font now and is actually a font’s ELF app. At least for iOS. There might be one for Android as well. I’m not entirely sure, but you can get your fonts into the app. You can type custom text. Change the color, do all sorts of cool things through the app. You can share it on your website and you can give font self access to use that there. You can share it on be hand on WordPress. Maybe in your newsletter or you can download the web font and it will download. It is a w o. FF format. And you can use that again on your own website or, however, you like to use that particular font format. Now at the moment, this is all private, but we can, of course go to publish, and we can allow public discovery and we can share our font with the world. And if I just scroll down here, you get a larger preview now. I don’t know if this is going to come through on the screen capture, but this is so smooth. This slider is like the fastest most responsive slider ever. I love it so we’ll just make that a little bit smaller there and you can see all of the different characters below. We have lowercase uppercase punctuation numbers, and if I jump back into illustrator, there we go, so we’ve covered a few different ways to create letters, drag them into fonts elf easily use smart kerning and smart spacing or do it yourself, and then once you’re finished, you can save that font town or catapult it and use it online now if you’d like to see fonts ELF in action with Photoshop, something a little bit more in-depth that goes through designing letter forms. Typography, best practice that kind of thing and definitely check out the futures font self video on the card at the top of the screen. And you can also download this fun type. Aquos ebook link as a free PDF in the video description and Lastly, we’re doing another competition and the prize is a font self bundle for Photoshop and illustrator and the challenge. Is this to design your own font with a theme of your choice and it can be anything you like. The letters can be hand-drawn. They could be created as vector shapes and it doesn’t have to be like a real working font because the challenge is just it’s more about you getting super creative with your own ideas for your own fun. But if you asked elected as the winner, then you can use font self to just make it real. Bring it to life so to speak now, The competition will be on Instagram and starts as soon as this video goes live, which is now and any details like the competition end day or hashtags. That kind of thing is linked in the description. Below so there we go. There are ups up the video. If you’d like to check out, fonts are and support the channel. My affiliate link is in the video description, but anyway. I hope you enjoyed this video. Maybe give it a like if you did take care and. I’ll see you next time [Music] you!