Ambicase Fatface

eliason's picture

As a follow-up to Ambicase Modern (the development of which was greatly assisted by its Typophile critique thread), I have created Ambicase Fatface. It is considerably bolder version of that single-case font which strove to combine upper- and lowercase forms for each letter.

Character set and OpenType features are much the same as Ambicase Modern, though I have added discretionary ligatures for FT, CT, and ST.

PDF specimen below. I welcome any constructive feedback you have!

AttachmentSize
AmbicaseFatface01.pdf268.04 KB
AmbicaseFatface02.pdf273.17 KB
AmbicaseFatface03.pdf279.24 KB
AmbicaseFatface04.pdf334.14 KB
ambicasefatfaceletters.pdf80.24 KB
Bendy's picture

I like 4 too. If you go with 3, you might need to bump up the thins of the 'o'.

Your numeral 4 is very clever :)

Tristan Bowersox's picture

I agree. 4 or 1.

eliason's picture

Thanks for the feedback guys!

whoisntjohngalt's picture

Found this thread while looking for someone responsible to thank for my logo. Thank you, eliason and teeline fonts.

eliason's picture

Fatface is coming along. Stuck in the slow work of coverting glyphs to the Poster style one by one.

litera's picture

BTW: The vortex lower case @ seems the most appropriate for this font. It's not generic and it still complements font face even though not perfectly it's much better than any other version. The last (sketched) looks like an /x/ unfortunately and shouldn't be considered at all.

Just keep the vortex version. Doesn't look distracting and it easily reads as an @ sign which is important. And you have to be aware that this particular glyph will be rarely used with this typeface. I tend to think that way.

William Berkson's picture

Looking good!

eliason's picture

Thanks for the encouragement Bill.
New pdf attached to the first post.
Biggest question I have: should I drop the medial swash version of /D/ (in the bottom sample below)? That little curl at the top isn't really working for me.

Sindre's picture

Yes, drop it. It gets too cluttered up there.

Boy, that 'M' is delicious.

riccard0's picture

At first sight I too would have said to ditch it. But the same would be true of swashed 6 and 9. And I like the “blackletterness” of some swash forms (most notably the wonderful T).
To maintain it, there could be different options:
- Invert the curl and make it go out of the bowl.
- Substitute it with a ball (like in ß).
- Just don’t close completely the counter (which solution isn’t properly a swash, but it offers a stylistic continuity with other swashed letters).

eliason's picture

A couple of open counter variants (bottom two):


Looks a little "stencilly" to me.

riccard0's picture

I think both work. But what about increasing the overshot of the last one, so the curve could reach as left as in the third one?

Looks a little "stencilly" to me.
Just what was still missing ;-)

Sindre's picture

I think #4 is too undefined at the point. Stencilly, indeed. #3 is better, but the gap is too small. None of the variants are as good as the base glyph, I think.

eliason's picture

Yeah, I think I'll stick with the base glyph.
From Tristan's suggestions way back when I did cut off the X-Acto blade sharp descenders from the stylistic-alternate /N/s. I also tried the different swash treatment he suggested


but decided that I didn't particularly like the resulting closed counter.

riccard0's picture

So you don’t like stencil, nor art nuveau ;-)

riccard0's picture

I didn't particularly like the resulting closed counter.


;-)

eliason's picture

Riccardo: you wink, but there might be something brilliant in that idea! Or not: what do you think. Top two are existing stylistic alternates for /N/. Bottom is a candidate to replace the middle line.


And here's the new one amidst regular (nonswash) letters:

riccard0's picture

I think it works. The trickiest part is, naturally, the curve. In my mock-up, the left spur gave the eye a “landing point” for the invisible line departing from the vertex of the hook. This is somewhat lost in a more “normally” shaped N.

eliason's picture

Still on the N.
Top two are existing alternates.
Third is tweaked version of the new one just shown.
Fourth is a different, new structure.


#3 seems like the most "ambicase" structure. (#1 favors the cap reading and #2 the lowercase.) My hesitation is wondering whether it fits visually with the other letters.
#4 looks very squared and geometrical to me.

riccard0's picture

#4's lowercaseness is too subtle, and it looks like it has a reversed contrast, like an א.

I think the new #3 works with the rest (maybe a touch wide?)

eliason's picture

like an א.

That's it! I knew it reminded me of something but I couldn't figure out what.

eliason's picture

An ambicase letter spotted in the wild (in 1883!): look at the /A/s:

eliason's picture

Two .pdf specimens appended to the top post.
AmbicaseFatface04.pdf is the full specimen; Ambicasefatfaceletters is a four-page showing of the alphabetics.
Lots of changes but mostly minor since before.
Settled on the /N/s including the new one; raised the swash /L/ and /2/; made C.fina no longer descend; altered the weight on the loops of the swashes; lots of other things.

I think I'm nearly done! All feedback appreciated.

Tristan Bowersox's picture

I like the new /n/! And it's definitely better without the stabby part.

I don't remember if I mentioned this, but over the course of looking over the font, I began more and more to see the decisions and reasons behind its eccentricities—the method to its madness, I guess. Anyway, that just made me respect it even more. It's rare to find a display face with that kind of depth of character. It's a damn fine font you've made, and I can't wait to see it released.

eliason's picture

Thanks a bunch Tristan, that's very kind.

eliason's picture


Tweaks (bottom version of each line is more recent). Added more space in the left counter of /W/, the middle of /R/, and the bottom counter of /K/. Adjusted /K/'s teardrop terminal, added weight to bottom right terminal of /E/, and made minor adjustments to top of /T/. Brought in /J/'s descender rightward for better fit.

Are /W/ and /R/ okay being that wide?

1996type's picture

R and W look fine to me. I think the K might still benefit from some extra whitespace in the bottom counter. Perhaps you could try to higher the point where it meets the stem (there's a name for that...) a little bit. The top 'counter' has much more whitespace than the bottom counter now.

Maybe the serif on the foot of K is a bit too short. I get the idea, but a few units would probably make it look much more like it belongs there.

The R seems to be a bit thick at the point where the two curves meet.

Lookin' good as always!

eliason's picture

Thanks Jasper.
The K is tricky - I want the join to be low-ish, since that is part of the lowercase flavor. But I agree that if the counters are too out of balance it won't work. Another difficulty is that I can move the leg out to open up the lower counter, but then for proper fit with following letters, the arm should come out too, which of course opens up the upper counter I was trying to balance... Anyway, maybe this latest compromise works okay.
Thanks for the observation on the R - I agree and have changed it.
Some tweaks to the humps of M, and to the swash forms of Q. Getting an agreeable weight is really hard on that Q, since it has three thick vertical strokes in the lower half, and only one (+ a teardrop) in its upper half.

Bendy's picture

Beautiful work, Craig. Really fantastic!

eliason's picture

Thanks Ben! Release is imminent!!

eliason's picture

Ambicase Fatface has been released.

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