Poetica Font from Adobe

So I pulled up the Adobe font called "Poetica Chancery" -- which is a simply wonderful font with four different families including a swash version. (Shown at right) I used the italics verson shown on the bottom since it had the lower case 'a' and 'g' I was looking for.

AdobeThe next problem was getting where I wanted to go. You see I had this vision in my mind of how I wanted the word to look... but there's no font close to it. Don't know how it got in my mind!

I opened Illustrator and set the type. I immediately converted the lettering to outlines so I could clip and snip letter parts from one letter to the other. Once I had the version I wanted I began to manipulate the lettering toward my goal.

I began pulling and pushing the ascenders and descenders -- pulling them further and further out -- and away from the word. I had to create new terminals on these because I really didn't care for the ball terminals. (By the way, I've provided you with a chart of all the terms used in this article... but you can see it later.)

Clipping letters It began taking shape. Notice I had to create a totally new 'g' to mimmick the descender of the 'y' and the 'p'. It was beginning to look like my vision. I've included a larger version of that which will open in a separate window.

( Have you seen this image before? I know I've seen that somewhere, but I just can't put my fingers on it. If you've seen this word done just like this, please let me know. If YOU did it, please let me know so I can compare how close I came to the version I saw. It's really frustrating to have a vision in your mind, and not know if it is original or if it's just a memory of something you've seen before.)

The C had to be enlarged, and the two ells had to be extended and overlapped. You can see all the scraps I generated working with the type. You also see the 'y' I screwed up several times. It was a tough one because in order to use a "similar" descender I would have to completely change the back stem. Changing that created even more problems as I brought the void back to the stem. Then I had a flash... the 'y' is really an upside down 'h' right? Sure, it worked! A slight modification and my 180-degree rotated copy of the 'h' looked like a beautiful 'y' -- and I didn't have to reinvent the descender!

Success! I now had produced the kind of title piece I had in mind. Here's another look at the finished piece. You can have that if you like.

Please send in your calligraphy masterpieces so we can share them with other DTG readers!

Thanks for reading, and keep on penning
      Fred Showker

Extra Support

Here's my 'Anatomy of Calligraphy' file.

Here is an example of one of my favorite shareware calligraphy fonts:
Black Chancery
Black Chancery, and
Black Chancery Italic
Black Chancery Italic. They're both in the Publishers' Warehouse for download.

Please don't forget to consider the very inexpensive "Calligraphy Alphabets" book

Back to the Introduction, or The Typography Department