Small Caps feature in Opentype--where to put glyphs?

dezcom's picture

I am using FontLab to design a type family and trying to create small caps. First, I am confused about what glyph numbers and names to use. I can find the Opentype "feature" <smcp> and a VOLT description of how to code the feature swap but I don't know the Opentype numbering scheme for small caps. I assume I would add a feature in FontLab but need help with the specifics. Any enlightenment would be appreciated.

ChrisL

twardoch's picture

Chris,

this is actually quite well explained on pages 136 ff. of the book Learn FontLab Fast: http://www.logofontandlettering.com/

I don't want to sound like on a trade show, but I think in this book you will find quite a few handy tricks for making OpenType fonts.

Regards,
Adam Twardoch
Fontlab Ltd.

dezcom's picture

Thanks Adam. I got the book and it worked. Redrawing the glyphs correctly to my satisfaction is far more complicated than Leslie's simple vertical reduction method but the way he describes groups worked as slick as can be. I'll post my results soon as a PDF.

ChrisL

dezcom's picture

Adam,
I finished my first attempt at small caps. Thanks for your help!
If anyone is interested, I have posted a PDF in the Critique area at:
http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/29/37378.html?1101185177
There is Greek and Cyrillic as well as small caps in the most recent post there.

ChrisL

jefferson's picture

Wow. Very nice work with ligatures & special characters.

dezcom's picture

Thank you Jefferson.

dezcom's picture

I recently purchased "Language Culture Type:
International Type Design in the Age of Unicode
" from ATypI and Graphis, <http://www.graphis.com/bks/othr/lculttyp/ds.lculttyp.en.html>. I highly recomend it to everyone. There are excellent chapters by Adam Twardoch on diacritics, John Hudon on Unicode, Cyrillics by Maxim Zhukov and Vladimir Yefimov, and Greek by Gerry Leonidas. There is much more but I have just begun to read it. This book and the publication TYPO <http://www.magtypo.cz/> are terrific help in type design. (see Diacrtitics CE by Filip Bla?ek in TYPO 10).
I wish I had read them before I started my typeface.

ChrisL

charles ellertson's picture

I have a couple of thoughts from the perspective of a comp, not a type designer. I

dezcom's picture

Adam,
Is my Cyrillic better?
Using FontLab 4.6, I have designed the Greek and Cyrillic glyphs for the light version of Leporello and added oldstyle figures to the weight as well.
I used classes naming them "num" and "onum" for OTF apps to use the feature. I also made further corrections on the Black.
There are 2 PDFs, one Light and one Black, in the "Critique" area at:
http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/29/37378.html?1103342243

ChrisL

dezcom's picture

Charles,
I tried tightening the space on my ligs but the difficulty is, when it looks good at a larger size, it looks tight at smaller sizes. I wish there was a way to swap out ligs by type size.

Thanks for your comments,

ChrisL

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