'dents' in a letterform - what's the proper name?

Tee's picture

Hi all,

I am writing a logo and brand guidelines and I cannot remember the proper name for the 'dent' in a letterform.
For example the letter 'k'. I have looked on the web and can't seem to locate it.

If anyone can help, I'd really appreciate it.

Thanks,
T.

dan_reynolds's picture

The angle?

Could that join inside the k be refered to as the shoulder?

Sometime the angle inside the letter v (where the two legs meet) is called the crotch.

Pieter van Rosmalen's picture

Or do you mean trapping?

dan_reynolds's picture

Trapping is when you over compensate for printing errors and fill-ins with your design (ok, that is oversimplifying things a bit…), like in Bell Centennial Bold Listing. it isn't the term for the general joins within a letter, which I believe is what Tanya is asking for.

dezcom's picture

"is when you over compensate for printing errors"
it is only "overcompensation" when you over do it.

To me, trapping is also a way to open visual space at small sizes--even if ther was no ink plugging going on. Angle joins of M, W, and N are examples of glyphs that might need it. The bolder the weight, the more likely the need will arise.

ChrisL

dave bailey's picture

Do you mean the negative space between the arm and the leg of the 'k'? Maybe a sort of counter? or maybe it doesn't have a name

timd's picture

A crotch or a groin where the arm and leg join.
Trapping is likely to be confused with the same term in reproduction for print, I think inktrap or cutaway would avoid confusion.
Confusion reigns.
Tim

Pieter van Rosmalen's picture

Thanks Tim, inktrap is indeed what I wanted to say.

hrant's picture

But since Chris is right that traps fight optical effects
at small sizes and not just ink gain, "inktrap" is more
misleading than any momentary and rare confusion with
the print production term. Many terms are overloaded,
but sometimes that's not the worst thing that could
happen to them.

Tanya, I really have no idea what she means.
The "k" is not a typically/prominently trapped
letter, but neither does it seem to have any
part that looks like a "dent"...

hhp

Tee's picture

Hi all,

Thank you (s) for your replies. I think 'crotch' best describes it. The sentence goes something like this:
'The x-height in slogan/tagline should never be taller than the 'crotch' in the letter 'k' within the logo.' This will then be supported by an illustration.
Sounds better than saying 'indent' or angle if you know what I mean?

Thanks again,
T.

Mark Simonson's picture

You could say "join." It's not standard type jargon, but it's descriptive.

dezcom's picture

Join sounds less painful as a word image than crotch does, even though it is a perfect description. Groin is another as in "Groin Vault" architecturally.

ChrisL

enne_son's picture

not technical, but: elbow
more technical: upper diagonal / lower diagonal join

dave bailey's picture

I like the 'crotch' description...scandalous!

Norbert Florendo's picture

Specific to the letters "k" and "K" the upper diagonal is called the "arm" and the lower diagonal is called the "leg".

So I guess the crotch would be somewhere between the arm and leg. ;-)

dave bailey's picture

Exactly my thinking, Norbert!

hrant's picture

What about "chevron"?

> the upper diagonal is called the “arm” and ...

Sometimes they're both called "arm"s.

BTW guys, don't forget, the inside of the "v"* is sometimes called a "cleavage". :-)

* Or better, the inside of a Greek Upsilon!

hhp

dezcom's picture

You got a leg up on that one Norbert:-)

ChrisL

Dan Weaver's picture

That would almost make a great typographic calendar. Sex and characters. One month could be K or k and V and so on.

engelhardt's picture

> Sex and characters.

I've always thought 'Q' to be a rather sexy one. :)

dezcom's picture

"I’ve always thought ‘Q’ to be a rather sexy one."
That is what Miss Moneypenny thought before she met 007.
Then he started F ing around and she went bach to sipping on T. :-)

ChrisL

Dan Weaver's picture

This calendar has more potential than I thought. Poor Miss Moneypenny she never got what she wanted, maybe in the next bond when they are in the old age home.

dezcom's picture

Dialogue heard from the old age home:

"James dear, did Q make all of your equipment or is some of it, shall we say, all your own?"

"Why Money penny! What ever do you mean?"

"I mean your walker is parked in my spot James and I wanted to know if it was you I should blame or Q dear."

"Thank God! At first I thought you were talking about my PPK"

ChrisL

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