Experimental Arabic/Latin Font Adaptation workshop

A two days workshop at Zico House for design instructors from Dar Al- Hekma College. July 2009.
workshop-final- Display Arabic type created by Ghinwa.

Text written by “Nina Kreidie” and “Ghinwa Yassine” from “Dar Al- Hekma College” in Saudi Arabia.

This two day workshop was extremely beneficial. Being educators, designers and lovers of typography, we wanted to indulge further in the smaller details of Arabic type design. During this workshop, we worked on a Latin font adaption to Arabic.

Sketches by Nina.

Sketches by Ghinwa.

waw outline
Continuos outline stroke with overlaps. Though the outline in this snapshot is not the final one and still needs tweaking, the flow of the pen stroke can be easily traced. This is the outline of the Arabic letter “waw” drawn in Fontab.

Working on single words instead of isolated letters, drove us to pay attention to the details concerned with the links of each connecting glyph (initial, medial and final). Therefore making this workshop even more comprehensive in such a short period of time. We learned to respect the gesture of the continuous hand movement. The glyph is constructed out of a continuous stroke; if you break the continuation, the point of contact between the different strokes will look odd. this helped us create stronger designs, and cleaner shapes.

english type
It was interesting to try breaking the monotonous tone of the overall font; for example, when having two consecutive teeth you can change one of the tooth heights in certain letters. And in some cases, you can have a ‘smart’ font were you create several options for a single letter. 

Nina Kreidie

Or you can have several options designed for the main stem of different letters.

pascal word ghenwa font

We found it to be lively, fun, and basically a creative combustion of a spark. In addition, the work was assembled in a manner that was conceptual and impressive. Pascal gave a drive of extreme interest and intellectual curiosity that gave us the motivation to get deeply involved in the work. He was very generous in regards to sharing his knowledge and ‘tricks’ of Arabic type design. He is an inspiring and sincere designer.

It was a privilege taking part in such a workshop.



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