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Alphabet Soup Font Guides and Manuals – Free Downloads

Many people have asked why I have only 9 fonts available for purchase. Part of the anwswer is that I’m sort of a perfectionist, and it takes me quite a long time to design, execute, and test a font to make sure it’s working properly. Also, all that work must be sandwiched in between design and lettering assignments—which must always take precedence. But there’s another reason why, at best, I can only turn out maybe one font design a year—and that is for me there’s a bit more to releasing a font than just having the font itself ready to go. There are a ton of supporting graphics that need to be created, and each font reseller has different requirements.

But more importantly, I decided early on that included with each font I would supply a full color PDF Guide or Manual (all 9 pictured above). From these multi-page PDFs one can get a very good idea of what these fonts look like in use, and gain an understanding their special features and how to access them. For example, the PowerStation Manual explains how to set layered copy in 2 or three colors, and in the Deliscript Manual you’ll find out how to access the special “t-crossbar” feature (among others). You’ll also learn some important “Do’s” and “Don’ts” for each font and (if you’re interested) read about how these fonts came to be.

Originally these manuals were only intended to be included with the font download at purchase, but I realized that they should also be available for prospective buyers as well as others—they might help with a decision, or just serve as inspiration. I’ve put links for all 9 PDF downloads together on one page, together with several case studies of some of my design work. So feel free to go the DOWNLOAD page and click on 1, 2 or all 9 of them.



A Second Distinction for Deliscript

I was very pleased to learn that my Deliscript fonts in addition to having been lauded by the Type Directors Club, have also been included as winners in the Typeface Design category in Communication Arts just released Typography Annual 1.

I am also happy to have added one more reseller to the roster of type houses that sell Alphabet Soup's fonts: YouWorkForThem. They currently sell Deliscript, Metroscript and PowerStation, and I will be adding more fonts to their list soon.

PEGs Cover Released w/Laura Smith Artwork

Years ago I designed the cover for the 6th Edition of the "Graphic Artists Guild Handbook–Pricing & Ethical Guidelines". I'd like to believe that my cover helped start a tradition of having excellent covers for the Guild's main publication. Among the previous cover artists have been such luminaries as Lou Brooks, Noah Woods, John Hersey, and Richard McGuire—each with a decidedly different point of view and aesthetic. Now my wife, illustrator Laura Smith has joined that grand tradition.

The Graphic Artists Guild has just released the 13th Edition with Laura's beautiful work gracing the front back and spine:

The cover artists chosen by the Guild for the this project have always been given free reign to come up with a theme that would be carried through the book. Laura chose a circus theme since two things she loves are storybook illustration and circus imagery. This is especially evident on the back cover of this book where she's created and written copy for an elaborate series of spots highlighting in circus/storybook style various aspects of the business of design and illustration:

Laura has always been one of the few illustrators who understands how to completely integrate typography into her illustrations, and this cover really demonstrates that fact. The Guild has chosen to highlight Laura and tell more of this story in their Member Spotlight. But also please check out the rest of the Graphic Artists Guild website—it's the only organization that's totally devoted to promoting and protecting the social, economic and professional interests of all graphic artists.

I will be headlining an event that the LA Chapter of the Guild will be holding later this month in downtown Los Angeles . . . but more about that later.


I wasn't going to post the PEGs cover I designed back in the day, but since Ms. Blake asked, here it is. Side note: the beginnings of the style that eventually became my Metroscript font can be seen in the word "Guidelines".

The Alphabet Soup Collection: on Sale at Veer

Just up on Veer, this all-inclusive collection of my fonts is on sale at 30% off the total of what they would cost if purchased individually. Veer's special promotion will be ongoing until the middle of May.

Signed Prints Available on Illogator

I have 7 different signed prints available for purchase on the Illogator website. They range from silkscreens to giclées, to lithographs. There are 2 different silkscreens that I did to promote my fonts Metroscript and PowerStation. The giclées include work I did for two musical groups—the "Squirrel Nut Zippers" and the "Blue Hawaiians", plus a design I did of the Tribeca Film Festival. The lithographs include a print of the signage I did for "Le Train Bleu" restaurant for NYC's Bloomingdales, and a press proof of my first album cover design for KISS – "Rock and Roll Over". The press proofs from 1976 I recently found tucked away in storage, and are in the same condition as they day I received them for approval of color—they're absolutely mint. I've decided to sign and sell a few of them and keep the rest.

Alphabet Soup Fonts In Use

From time to time people send me (or I find on my own) examples of how other designers have used my fonts. Sometimes these samples are really wonderful. So when I come across examples that I feel are unusual, different or extremely well-done, I'd like to post them here. Recently I posted an example of how Metroscript was used in the movie "The Hulk". I would welcome submissions from anyone who would like to email them to me. My first posting in this series comes from Switzerland and was sent to me by its designer. The font is again Metroscript. Usually I'm not a big fan of extruding type dimensionally—I'm kind of a type "purist". But I thought that this one was done really well, keeping it simple and avoiding the temptation to just keep going and going. I love its simple colors and clean lines. Somehow the designer has taken what I feel is a very "American" font and imbued the design with a very European flavor.

It was sent to me by Bernhard Huber who asked that the credit read as follows— Design: Medienbau, Agentur für Konzept und Design, Switzerland

Metroscript a "Rising Star" at MyFonts

In mid-March I began selling my Alphabet Soup fonts through MyFonts. To my surprise, in that short period of time "Metroscript" rose to the top of their list of "Starlets". The Starlets list ranks all fonts that appeared on MyFonts within the previous 50 days according to their sales volume. MyFonts just sent out their May newsletter Rising Stars highlighting the best-sellers among their new fonts, and I'm proud to say that Metroscript is prominently featured.

This is all very gratifying to me—I arrived at font design by way of my career as a lettering artist—which is not the route taken by most font designers. Font design is a very different discipline from lettering in that it is a much more disciplined craft. I can make a piece of lettering sing by using all kinds of tricks and devices to create visual excitement. It does take a keen eye and lots of imagination and know-how to make a piece of lettering stand out, but font design is much less forgiving: you are limited to one letter next to another in a straight line, and every letter in a font must be in harmony with every other letter. I think much of Metroscript's success has to do with the fact that I brought a lettering artist's eye to a font designer's craft, and I think this may be appreciated by those who are looking for something a little different. I've been told that copy set in Metroscript resembles hand lettering more than any other font.