It’s true confession time. Back in the day Apple shipped their very first LaserWriter print (300 dpi). The price tag was about $7,000 and the printer came with so many fonts that counting them took all the fingers on one hand. That’s right.
Helvetica, Times, Courier, Symbol.
That was back when Adobe PostScript ruled the day. If you wanted more fonts for the Mac and LaserWriter combo, you had to design them yourself.
We used Fontographer to design and create fonts back in those days. Today, designers can still use Fontographer to create fonts for Mac and Windows.
Fontographer opens and generates Type 1, TrueTykpe, OpenType, Type 3, and Multiple Master fonts. The Font Windows displays all the font characters. You control encoding, kerning, linespacing, and more in the built-in editor.
Fontographer’s tools are not for the faint of heart. You control every aspect of a font, but the app provides guides, templates, and more to ensure that your design makes it through to a complete, and usable font– for Mac or Windows.
Most of the tools will be familiar to DTP professionals, type designers, or calligraphers, though trial and error will be the norm.
Fontographer has been around many years, so it’s a mature, feature-laden app. The latest version features glyph window zoom up to 1600%, anit-aliasing in all app windows, more Font Info detail, and a custom search utility for glyphs based on the Unicode codepoint, glyph name, or Unicode character.
If you’ve always dreamed of designing and creating your own fonts, this is the tool, but caveat emptor. Fontographer is a professional tool and complex. Thankfully, there’s a try-before-you-buy option.