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Fontographer: Type by Design Paperback – September 1, 1995


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: MIS Press; 1st edition (September 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558284478
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558284470
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 7.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #289,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By William Weller on February 22, 1998
Format: Paperback
Stephen Moye's book takes over where the Fontographer manual supplied by Macromedia leaves off. Whereas Macromedia's book is merely a software instruction manual which describes how to use the features of the program Mr. Moye describes in great detail how to effeciently design a font from start to finish. His strategy of using the similarities in the strokes, stems and serifs in a character set will save the font designer a lot of time and frustration. Even though the book was written with a slight bend towards the MacIntosh version of the software, it is equally useful for the Windows fontographer. It is surprising (and fortunate) that such a good-quality book has been written for a software program which is not as well known, and does have the large customer base as many other graphics programs.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 13, 1998
Format: Paperback
A close friend of mine has fontographer 4.0 but no user manual and he never learned how to use it. I've tried to learn it just by messing around, but to no avail. The program is not self-explanatory. I found Moye's book at the UW art library and started reading. Three hours later (pg. 100) I remembered I needed to eat some food. I was thoroughly impressed with the "morals?" of type design he presented along with the how to. He stresses the quality of the product, which has been lost in the quantity of typefaces today. Who would imagine a software book could suck a person in. Listen to me, I'm rambling. Anyway, check it out. It's a keeper.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Thomas W. Phinney on December 6, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In my day job as program manager for western language fonts at Adobe Systems, I'm often asked about books for people wanting to learn how to make their own digital fonts. This is the one I recommend first every time.
Stephen Moye has quite simply written the best and at this time the only complete guide to making your own fonts. Information on how to construct outlines properly, spacing, kerning and more is all here. Importantly, this book is NOT only useful for people using Fontographer (which is a sadly out of date tool now); most of the information is equally useful for those working with FontLab or other modern font creation tools.
Other books worth checking out for the would-be font-maker include Michael Harvey's Creative Lettering Today, Walter Tracy's Letters of Credit, and Alexander Lawson's Anatomy of a Typeface. Of course there's also Robert Bringhurst's classic Elements of Typographic Style, which should be owned and read by anyone who cares about type.
I liked this book so much that I personally hand-bound mine as a hardcover, to make it last. In retrospect, with used softcover copies going for $300 each, it seems like I had the right idea!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Andrew F. Bennett on March 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
I could not agree more, gret software lousy documentation. This is an essential tool in the graphic arts/design arsenal, it is only appropriate to have high quality documentation to go with it! Stephen Moye is at the top of his game on this, I have seen it and want it!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Nancy L. Nicholson on November 4, 1999
Format: Paperback
I create my own fonts and have used Fontographer since Altsys had it back in the early 90s. I have it for Mac and PC, I think so much of it!
I will add my vote to the votes that this book needs to be back in print. Got a library copy and took it back, then went back for it and it had "disappeared." I remember it as good advice for designers and since the software versions have not changed all that much, it would still be relevant. A new edition, updated would be nice (IS THE PUBLISHER READING THIS?). Even with the typos, I rate it tops for info content.
There really is no substitute for Moye's book out, but for those wondering about downloads of upgrades, userguides and technotes, visit the Macromedia site. For others, get Macromedia FreeHand (at this writing in version 9 & 10 has just shipped), as it is a perfect companion with many potent creation options and file export compatibility. You can make stuff like technical fonts (chemical isotopes with super AND subscripts), store images (I stuck some FreeHand animation sequences of calligraphic figures in its slots and can type an animation sequence). Watch out for Mac OS 10, as it is not clear that Fontog will run on it. Fontog will run OK on Mac OS 9. I finally found a copy at the Alibris site, so maybe they can dig up another copy (it will be expensive). As far as I have been able to find out (summer 2001) the publisher is not interested in a reissue or in selling the copyright.
However, the more tricky you are with Fontographer, the more you need this book because it goes well beyond the software manual! Oh, and for the person who wants to do a ct ligature, buy Adobe's Bickham Script for a masterful example.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By "54echo" on February 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
I called this publisher, IDG, today (Feb. 22, 2000). They don't expect to reprint this book. I just bought Fontographer, and believe me, Macromedia makes great software but lousy books. I own other of their software and it's the same for all their books: long, verbose, and confusing at times.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Bill Bogan on March 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
Every review of this book touts its usefulness. I have searched for other books on Fontographer, none exist. I would love to get a copy of this. Will the publisher ever reprint? How do we let them know its valuable and needed?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
I got this book a few years ago. It has good information but is in dire need of copyediting -- typos on every page, just about -- and a better index.
It shouldn't be considered a substitute to the Fontographer manual (or the tech notes, which are available on the web site) but a supplement.
Butcha know, what really annoyed me was where they use a ct ligature in the text but never tell you how to make on yrself.
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