Contents of the GOCM____.TXT file
Welcome to GoodCityModern,
Andrew Meit's commentary on GoodCityModern:
Naturally, you may be asking yourself, 'How did he create this
font?'. Locating a full character set was not easy. After searching in many
libraries, I found the set at C.W. Post College (which has an excellent
typography reference section). The reproduction was small and the copier
worse, but I managed.
Studying the page, I quickly realized several key points. One,
Gutenberg designed the font with a deep understanding of Latin grammar and
spelling. He had kerning pairs based on repeated letter usage throughout
the Bible and kerned small words into tight units (i.e. our 'of' and
'and'). Second, that he posited key geometric guidelines to aid in creating
the font. He was doing more than just capturing the scribe-like strokes of
his day, but in addition had a respect for the metal and ink to be used in
printing his Bible. This second point made it possible to actually create
the font; because of the smallness of the reproduced letters, I had to
re-create (for techies, 'reverse - engineer') them. (My loupe and the page
became very close friends!)
After some hand drawings to 'feel' the letter forms, I scanned the
page at 150 dpi and made a bitmap font using Fontastic Plus. Sometimes, I
felt another hand on my mouse while fat-bitting away late at night... Then,
I typed Latin text to see the typeface in actual context.
Next, using the bitmap font, I printed samples at 200% enlargement
with smoothing on to get a larger size to scan and clean up in MacPaint.
Did preliminary versions in Fontographer 3.0.5 thru 3.1, but was not
satisfied with the outlines or control of the outlines - threw away about
nine months work. While testing Freehand 3.0, I noticed that its new
features would at last give me the tools and control I wanted. So, I placed
the scanned images into Freehand 3.0 to trace and refine - using all its
features to accomplish the task. Yes, bcp by bcp, The font came alive.
There were days I felt a presence in the room...
Once the letter forms were done, I simply option-copied the
FreeHand paths into Fontographer 3.2. Did further refinements using remove
overlap and decompose composites; then created kerning pairs. Based on the
same careful study Gutenberg did on Latin letters, I needed to create 800
pairs! Now, as of 5:15 June 18 1991, using Fontographer 3.3, I was
A few historical notes. The original typeface was created for
Latin, not for modern English; hence, the 'modern' in the name of my
translation. I had to create a full Roman set everyone can use. However,
there is an exact Latin version which is not done; which will be used for
an involved multi-media work some time in the future. The 'goodcity' part
of its name comes from German: guten - good, burg - city. (actually, Earl
Allen, a fellow Altsysian coined the term - thanks!)
Enjoy and use in good health.
Andrew S. Meit Software tester (and Stackhead) Altsys Corporation