Friday, May 29, 2009

The Weird World of Fonts

I've been having lots of fun doing something I thoroughly enjoy, which is surfing the internet with the "legitimate excuse" that I'm contributing towards the development of my Etsy shop, when actually I'm just having fun. In my world this is called working.

My roaming has taken me from tissue paper suppliers to die-cutting machines via the fun of font factories. No longer will I be restricted by the TTF fonts pre-installed with my version of Windows Office! Instead I have been perusing the font catalogues of places like Font Squirrel, Font River and Dafont, and downloading fonts like "Inked God", "Hesperides" and "VTK Sonho". And it's so easy! If you're a PC user like me all you do is click on the 'Download' button, wait for the box to pop up and select whether you want to open or save the font, save the resulting Zip file to your C:\Windows\Fonts folder, and unzip it. Suddenly all sorts of interesting alphabets appear in the available selection of fonts in Microsoft Word, and you can start writing.

The one I really like for my Etsy banner is called Jellyka, Saint Andrew's Queen, which wins on points just for the title alone!

I should say as well that the fonts I looked at are free for personal use, and the terms for commercial use are very generous. I found Jellyka Nerevan's website and she writes that if you want to use the font in commercial settings that's fine if you make a donation via PayPal to her site, and so I did since I consider that an Etsy banner would be commercial use of the font. But I really like the open, trusting attitude because I imagine there are thousands of people out there who won't make a donation but will benefit from using a font in a commercial context, and I doubt if the average font designer has the time or resources to check the world for cheats.

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