Posted in Art, Typeface, Uncategorised, Visual Language
I recently had the pleasure to talk with Ale Paul, the highly talented type designer about his new typeface Bellissima, how he feels about other designers implementations of his fonts, his technique for calligraphic typefaces and his top 5 typefaces of all time.
Bellissima Script is your new typeface. Where did your inspiration for this typeface come from?
Before Bellissima I designed a few calligraphic typefaces following different schools or styles like Burgues Script, Compendium, Poem Script or Business Penmanship. Bellissima began from an entirely different thread as those fonts. It started with Alex Trochut generously showing me a gorgeous lettering book from his grandfather’s library: Bellezas de la Caligrafía, by Ramón Stirling, 1844. Stirling was one of the Latin calligraphy pioneers who introduced a refined version of English calligraphy in Spain and made it popular in the nineteenth century.
My intention was to veer away from Stirling’s exuberant ornamentation, and work within simplified forms of his ideas. As it usually is with most of my projects, Bellissima became its own bird and shaped its own flying patterns. Suddenly there were many ligatures, multiple endings and swashed connections, hundreds of alternates for both uppercase and lowercase. Bellissima has an effusive energy that appeals much beyond its sourcing. It’s intended for these modern times of appreciation for old crafty things like stationary and letterpress, where its origins help it shine brightly.
Is there are any special considerations when designing a typeface on a computer that is meant to look like it is written by a calligraphic hand?
Yes, you should be perfect in technique details as connections and space between letters. And I think is very important to understand how the hand and writing works and reflect some of the imperfections of it. It should be as much imperfect as the human is but structured by the technology.
As a designer I feel typography is the most important element of any design, it makes or breaks it for me. When designing type do you ever take in consideration how other designers may implement your fonts?
Yes, I think as a graphic designer user in every font I design. I imagine uses and play with it, every glyph I do I try words and imagine a context and its results. My typefaces are not neutral and are very focused in a concept and this concept includes the use.
About the use, at the beginning, I was very critic with some ways the designers were using my fonts but after a while I relaxed and let it be. There are some very good designers that makes your fonts looks better than I imagined them too, they play with them and sometimes they add extra elements than improve the use a lot. So its a balance. Fonts are a resource as colour is another. Some people can use cyan or magenta in a good or bad way.
A question I want to ask every type designer. What are your top 5 favorite typefaces?
Its not easy to answer this. It depends of the use and of course I will not mention my own fonts.
So, being totally unfair with many others I will select FF Tartine, Tangier, Avenir, Bickham Script and Regal Display.
I want to thank Ale for taking the time to speak with us about his work, and process. You can see more of Ale’s wonderful typefaces here. You can also stay up to date with his future type endeavors by following him on twitter & dribbble.