Lambo a display typeface for critique

sasapetrova's picture

Just finished it. Any Suggestions for fine tuning and alternate character shapes? In particular, how to make this more unique and interesting would be helpful. Thanks!

LamboWorkingTitle.pdf10.72 KB
Lambo Capitals and Lowercase Text.pdf11.32 KB
speter's picture

I like it, but I find the Ss to be unbalanced. What we really need to critique it is some text setting.

sasapetrova's picture

Thanks Speter, I think you are right about the Ss, so I send a complete text setting Capitals and Lowercase and I will work some more on the Ss.

cerulean's picture

I don't like the R; it seems to have a wedgie. A very open R where the bend doesn't meet the stem might be interesting.

farquart's picture

i think the design lacks merit... this style has been done to death... try something original

Bendy's picture

That's really not constructive, Farquart.

I actually think this is quite pleasant. I'd open up some of the counters more...on the P, R, lower counter of S, the eye of the e, the leftward opening on the 2, and see how that looks.

To me, 5 isn't working with the dip on the crossbar. P and R could be a bit wider. Would it destroy the harmony of the characters if the C and c were to have more curvy bottom halves? I like the squareness but perhaps there's not enough interplay of different shapes?

Just some suggestions, see what you think... :)

farquart's picture

i think i'm being quite constructive... why waste time... i cant stand the way you guys blow smoke up peoples arses telling them how much potential this or that design has when in fact it's a piece of crap... this is a piece of crap... life is too short to waste on this...

Nymus's picture

Hello sasapetrova,

Long time no see… whatever happened with Semele? Have you given it up or what? By chance I roamed in the Critique/Display forum and found your Lambo Sans Serif and some quite controversial and interesting comments, hahahahahaha… Although ‘farquart’ is a bit overdoing it in an outspoken way, while ‘Bendy’, ‘speter’ and ‘cerulean’ were positively helpful. I think altogether it is not such a bad idea to see an artwork from the ‘devil’s advocate point of view. Therefore although ‘farquart’ doesn’t seem to have posted anything for critique and all the comments he has posted occasionally are mostly rather caustic and pointed, you should take seriously his point of view and improve as much as you can Lambo’s design concept in order to make it better and more original.

Keep in mind though that if you go to and looks for similarities between typefaces, for example Eurostile (Lambo does bear a resemblance to Eurostile by the way) you will find quite a number of typefaces that are Eurostilistic.

All in all, I believe that you should take all the comments posted so far and especially ‘farquart’s’

In order not to add to your possible confusion about what to do to improve Lambo, I will post some suggestions and critique at a later time.

Bendy's picture

Farquart, I think it would be more constructive to explain what you don't like about this font, or give examples of fonts that are similar so the designer can make deliberate choices how to make it different or even perhaps better. The original question was how to make this more original or interesting.

If you think it's a waste of time you don't have to comment. I think it's great to see a whole mix of different styles on this Crit forum, from people who've only just got interested in type to professional type designers. The point is that we all want to learn from each other.

Natasa, I can see from the pdf that you are technically capable of doing more with this. I think there are similar styles out there but the fact that you think it needs more 'originality' shows you could choose many directions to take. I'd see this as more a starting point than a finishing point, which means there actually is more potential! Have a play with different elements. I'm thinking the pattern of straight stems could be broken a bit. How would it look with the hmn curving inwards on the right leg? Also, what would happen if you bumped out the sidebearings lots?

sasapetrova's picture

Thank you all very much for your suggestions and all that prompting to carry on with various improvements, even you ‘hardcore’ farquart, although it might be a good idea if, according to your point of view, you could name some typefaces that undeniably do have merit.

I did gave some thoughts to what you all collectively, and especially you Bendy, suggested so far and I will upload soon an alternate version of Lambo which will incorporate numerous improvements, even what farquart suggests in his own overstated and yet vague ways.

omega's picture

Great to see you back Natasha, whatever happened to Semele? I keep wondering about it. Reading all the comments and suggestions posted so far about Lambo, I realize that you must be quite mixed-up, so I thought that I might add a few thoughts of my own.

I agree with all that was written so far especially with the harsh views of farquart who obviously would never make a career in the diplomatic corps... I have never seen any typeface designed by him in Typophile but that shouldn’t exclude him form airing his, I believe quite honestly thought about, critiques so adamantly with his characteristic (I have read all his blog entries posted so far) touch of malice... I don’t know really, he may be just a font freak and yet despite that, what he points out: typeface originality and concept, is absolutely important and totally valid.

So, I ask you “What is your concept for Lambo?” And please do reply, as I believe that your original idea was not just another Eurostile-BankGothic-ish remake, (and yet Lambo does look like that) because in that case we should really take farquart very seriously. At this point, state clearly the Lambo concept please.
I will send you asap some of my own suggestions.

.00's picture

I normally don't spend much time in the critique section. I know speter so I'm usually drawn to threads he comments on. To be honest I downloaded the PDF with the intent of marking it up with comments to help you, but I unfortunately have to agree with the disagreeable farquart and say the design is quite a mess.

First of all squarish sans have run their course. The weight is too light for small sizes and too heavy to be a display lightline.

The proportions are very unappealing, both the lowercase and uppercase s is unbalanced. The transitions from the diagonal strokes to those rounded details of the A, V, W are very poorly drawn.

That lowercase e has got to go, it draws too much attention to itself. The lowercase round forms are too narrow against the square ones, but the Uppercase round forms are too wide against the square forms.

The r is too wide those details on the lowercase h, m and n that flatten the stroke as it emerges from the stem are completely out of character and should be rethought. Those completely flat terminals on the bottom of the c e and s are not helping at all.

The uppercase R is completely out of character with that art nouveau diagonal stroke. The tail of the Q is too wimpy.

That five has got to go, as do all the numbers. If you have to included a tabular set of figures you should rethink your approach since all of your figures are unbalanced. The zero looks too narrow as well.

Just a few thoughts. Seriously, my advice would be to take whatever you have learned in bringing the design to this point, and start over with a more carefully thought out design.

And the spacing in your text sample too tight and the word space too loose.

Hey but what do I know.


Nymus's picture

So James, like you say squarish sans have run their course, maybe yes maybe not, I still see quite a number of squarish sans appearing in most digital libraries and no one complains about it. Nevertheless, according to you which are the types of sans serif typefaces that have not run their course? Kindly be as specific as can be.
Starting with the design of a light weight and then going on to design the heavier or even lighter weights is not such an atypical phase of typeface production.

What the infamous farquart said laconically and later on quite nastily (even if he seems to be right), was furthered by you in a very analytical way but at the same time dismissing totally any merit that the typeface would have attained if all of us here contributed positively our ideas and suggestions about how this typeface could be corrected, fine tuned and redesigned to get to be more wholesome.

The proportions are very unappealing is an overstatement because you don’t support your view in any way. Of course both the lowercase and uppercase s is unbalanced, but this is something that could fixed quite easily. No big deal. The transitions from the diagonal strokes to those rounded details of the A, V, W are indeed very poorly drawn plus M and N and also v, w, and y should be a little more fine tuned.

Here, we are supposed to be either typeface design experts or font freaks and all shades in between, a typical down to earth graphic designer might appreciate and use a typeface (even this one at its present state of development) quite differently than us.
That lowercase e has could stay as it and maybe fine tuned some more and then its design concept could be used in some other characters, in that case it wont draw too much attention to itself and instead it could become the basis of a unique style.
Yes, the lowercase round forms are too narrow against the square ones (although everything is squared and rounded at the same time) and the uppercase round forms are too wide against the square forms. This is something that can be fixed.
I believe that sasapetrova was designing up to now serif typefaces like the Semele that she had posted in the Critique-Serif forum

and which was quite nice according to most of the people who saw it there. Lambo is her first attempt in designing a sans serif display typeface and naturally she is off the mark in quite a number of points.
Sure, the r is should be more narrow. On the other hand, the assumption that the details on the lowercase h, m, n and u that flatten the stroke as it emerges from the stem are completely out of character and should be rethought seems to be a slightly valid point of view but not necessarily if this concept is also applied to all other structurally related letter forms. Personally, I find those completely flat terminals on the bottom of the c e and s quite welcome to my aesthetics provided that they conform harmonically with the overall design concept of the typeface.

Naturally, it is quite obvious that the spacing in the text sample is indeed too tight and the word space too loose, something which is quite easily fixed.

You say: “that five has got to go, as do all the numbers”, there is another way of dealing with this: 4 and 0 must become wider, 5 must become narrower and number 2 at the top is not designed well at all and should be fixed. That should do it.

Theoretically, I do agree in general terms with your advice that sasapetrova takes whatever she has learned in bringing the design to this point, and to start over with a more carefully thought out design. But it would be better if she learns finer sans serif design aesthetics from her numerous oversights by fixing them all one after the other.

.00's picture

I gave my opinions on the work. Take it or leave it.
I would think starting from a Medium weight and then moving on to a light and a heavy is a more realistic way to design.
Enjoy your day.


Bendy's picture

>I would think starting from a Medium weight and then moving on to a light and a heavy is a more realistic way to design.

I think that's up the the designer, no?

.00's picture

No, I think that is up to the design, not the designer.

Bendy's picture

Are they separate then?

.00's picture

Of course they are.

Nymus's picture

Come on sasapetrova get on with it. Good Luck.

srbooker's picture

I like this typeface it reminds me of a font used on either space mountain or the men in black ride in orlando. I as well feel that the s is not balanced. It is top heavy so it is a bit unnerving. SRB

PabloImpallari's picture

Dont let NO ONE discourage you.
Just keep working on.

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