Birthdate: 2004; retooled
Legal status: Free for personal; pay for
Classification: Rectilinear slab serif (semi-serif)
Description: a progressive slab serif designed
for display settings and restrained text use. The package includes regular,
italic, bold and stencil versions, all with complete Western European
character set. The design is based on the widely-used City font.
and year of birth:
His life in brief: I
grew up in the liberal culture-capital city of Melbourne, and later
in England, mesmerized by visual art, literature, industrial design
and science-fiction cinema. After studying art history & graphic design
in college I worked as a technical consultant, photographer & press
agent in the music business. In my 30’s I switched to creative consulting
& copy writing for advertising, at the same time dabbling in industrial
design & audio engineering.
I became interested in typography
only recently (2001) as a synthesis of all of my life-long interests.
The themes and inspiration for my fonts mostly come from art & design
disciplines outside of typography. Right from the beginning I have looked
to industrial design, cinematic design and architecture for shapes,
structures, details, themes and ideas.
My type designs are very much a form of personal artistic expression
uncompromised by commercial demands. I sell most of them for money because
giving away works of art you’ve put a huge effort into de-values the
creation. Most users have no concept of how much effort goes into an
original high-quality font.
At the same time I believe very strongly in the spirit of giving. Yet
I see a vast number of poorly-designed free fonts have undermined type
design. So I make some of my fonts free as a way of redeeming free type,
by allowing people to play with a few well-crafted original fonts that
give good results. Its paradoxical but I’m philosophical about it: if
all font-makers did the same there would be far fewer free fonts and
the quality much higher.
Midnight Kernboy: how ?
Midnight Kernboy was an experiment to discover why nobody had
made a slab serif font with a semi-serif layout. I made one and found
the combination of round letter bodies and counterposed slabs did not
harmonize. So I tried again with square letter bodies and found the
combination intuitive and natural. The square bodies and slabs fit together
neatly like pieces of a puzzle.
A traditional fault, if you like, of Egyptians is
their long slab serifs. This makes them well-suited to graphic design
work but works against readability, so I made Kernboy’s slabs short
to make it useful for text - and keep things interesting. The letter
forms are also simpler and cleaner than the traditional forms of City.
Kernboy has a few other interesting features like the
fractured c and alternate a. I’m fascinated
by fractured or broken letter design. Usually you only see
it in gothic types or blackletters, and I wanted to find out if fractured
outlines could work in a western-Italian type style.
To know more...