5 free typography projects you still can support this year

5 free typography projects you still can support this year

It's the end of the year, and there are some interesting free typography related fundraisers about to end or getting closer to that state.

Euphoria Script font

This is one of two fonts that Sabrina Lopez, a type designer from Argentina, is doing for Google Web Fonts. Designs of both Euphoria Script and Rouge Script are based on hand-drawn sketches, but this kickstarer covers only the first one.

Euphoria Script

The font will be published under terms of SIL Open Font License. If the kickstarter reaches beyond its goal of $4,000, Sabrina will draw additional alternate glyphs.

So far the project got $3,174 of $4,000, and there are 7 more days to go (ends on December 17).

Exo Sans font

Exo is a geometric sans font family by Natanael Gama (Portugal). The font family has 9 weights, supports OpenType features and has a pretty nice coverage of 700 characters supporting most Western, Central and Eastern European languages, old-style figures, stylistic alternates etc.

Much like Euphoria Script, this font family is a project supported by Google Web Fonts who are planning to do manual hinting once the work is done. This kickstarter has 16 more days to go (ends on December 26) and is currently at $6,060 of $7,500 goal.

PragmataPro font family

This project is quite different from the first two, both in amount of work already put into it and the financial goal. PragmataPro was designed by Fabrizio Sciavi (Italy) specifically with programmers in mind: it's a sans serif mono font family with narrow glyphs and zero line spacing to get more content into same screen estate. The family has four faces, covers over 1600 glyphs with each glyph manually hinted from 9 to 48pt.

PragmataPro

We are talking about 4 years of work to this point, and Fabrizio estimates finalization of this work as 800 days. This is where $220,000 comes from. The amount seems too much, unless you consider taxes and all the additional fees that shave the money to mere $90,000 which sounds about right for 2+ years of further work.

Fabrizio currently plans to release the font family under terms of one of Creative Commons licenses (he's seems to be considering OFL too) and he's ready to publish the source Fontlab project or convert it to UFOs. If the goal isn't reached, all the people who supported the project will be able to buy the font family for a much lower price.

Unfortunately the IndieGoGo campaign has only 22 days to go (ends on December 31), and by now it's at mere $3,461 of the $220,000 goal.

Development of ttfautohint

Ttfautohint, a project by Werner Lemberg, aims to simplify the process of hinting TrueType fonts by leveraging the work to FreeType and its patent-free autohinter, as well as providing a nice UI for Windows, Mac and Linux users. This project is relevant to every type designer who cares about screen rendering and web typography.

Source code of ttfautohint along with Windows and Mac builds is already available, both Google and Fontlab supported the project financially, however it's still at $19,714.00 of the $30,000 goal. Fortunately the fundraiser campaign isn't restricted time-wise.

Open Educational Resources for Typography

We already covered this project few weeks ago, so here is a quick recap. This kickstarter is about creating high quality learning resources on typography and type design licensed under Creative Commons.

The current fundraiser covers only the first stage of the whole project: Theory booklet. So far the campaign has raised $6,544 of the $8,000 goal and has 18 days to go (ends on December 29).

Conclusion

As free software communities keep growing, the fundraiser model becomes more and more relevant. We still have a lot to learn about marketing and promotion, but it looks like we are getting there.

Most of the kickstarters listed above end in December, so if you really care about typography, you have another chance to make something good in the end of the year.

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8 Comments

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  1. Sorry if this sounds harsh, but I find PragmataPRO’s target almost ridiculous.
    Some type designers seem to have some difficulties to see the difference between “four years of work” and “I started working on this four years ago”.
    Of course one implies that the designer worked full time on that during four years and of course it makes those figures sound reasonable, but in that case I wonder who can afford working full-time on something during four years without getting any money. You have to be too rich or too reckless. I mean… working for four years for free and expecting people to give you $ 200000 in a couple of weeks? That has to be the worst plan ever!
    Ok, maybe I’m trolling. Enough.

    The rest of the fund raisers seem to be more realistic and results show it.

  2. Alexandre Prokoudine 11 December 2011 at 2:37 am

    @Gez I think you are missing the fact that it’s meant to sponsor further work on the project, not just cover expenses of the past work. And the fundraiser started over a months ago (I do agree that 2 months is unrealistic just as well).

  3. Do Euphoria Script includes cyrillic letters?

  4. @Alexandre: I was well aware of that. Your text says it clearly, its for the 800 days of pending work.
    Maybe I didn’t elaborate enough, but my point was that asking for that money is even excessive if he wants to cover the whole development.
    Of course, if you put the past and pending work together you get six years and $ 200000 for six years of work doesn’t sound excessive.
    But I find it quite difficult to believe that somebody worked full-time for four years for free, so something about those “six years of work” sounds strange.
    If he, as the rest of us, has a job or works independently to make a living, it means he worked on the project in his spare time. And asking the equivalent of around $ 2800 a month for that is at least unrealistic.

    Please, don’t get me wrong. I’m not judging him. I’m just trying to illustrate how unrealistic that goal sounds.

  5. @sphericalhorse

    Do Euphoria Script includes cyrillic letters?

    Unlikely, but don’t hesitate to ask Sabrina :)

    @Gez

    Please, don’t get me wrong. I’m not judging him. I’m just trying to illustrate how unrealistic that goal sounds.

    I think I can agree on that.

  6. As open source ressoruce for typo, Flossmanual just published a book (in french) last month about free fonts : read at http://fr.flossmanuals.net

  7. @pygmee Yes, and Elisa promised me a press-release :)

  8. I love the first one Exo Sans font, and was happily surprised by the fact that a fellow portuguese created it! Great stuff! :)

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