Multi-Script 29LT Fonts

29LT is progressing from a bi-script Arabic and Latin digital type industry into a multi-script fonts entity. The global market we live in and the continuous integration of different cultures is demanding the need for multi-script type systems.

First additions are the Cyrillic and Greek scripts to 29LT Zarid Sans typeface making it cover four scripts; the Arabic, Cyrillic, Greek, and Latin scripts.

The new type designer and collaborator that expended 29LT Zarid Sans to cover Cyrillic and Greek is Krista Radoeva. She is a freelance type designer from Sofia, Bulgaria who graduated from the Type and Media Masters at The Royal Academy of Arts in The Hague and she holds a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. Selecting Krista as a native Bulgarian speaker who knows well the Cyrillic script and has a good knowledge of the Greek language was a key factor.

 

Below is Krista’s text on the design and development of Cyrillic and Greek character set:

29LT Zarid Sans Cyrillic and Greek

The expansion of 29LT Zarid Sans to Cyrillic and Greek was an interesting task. When it comes to Cyrillic, people often consider the script to be very square and rigid. Greek on the other hand, with its many round shapes, is often the opposite — very soft and fluid. Consequently, the challenge of a multi-script 29LT Zarid Sans was to remain respectful to the character of both scripts, and at the same time introduce design details that brought all the scripts together in harmony.

This meant experimenting with lots of different shapes and alternative forms, until I was able to find the right rhythm and introduce the fluidity that already existed in Latin and Arabic. It is surprisingly rare to find a Humanist Sans typeface with Cyrillic and Greek, with localized forms for Bulgarian and Serbian, as well as distinctive Slanted styles, so I am extremely happy to be a part of the 29LT Zarid Sans extension.

 

Scripts Suffixes

29LT will be following the scripts naming suffixes system for each new typeface. The present 29LT Zarid Sans that covers the Arabic and Latin scripts will have the suffix ‘AL’ added to it, having the ‘A’ stand for Arabic and the ‘L’ for Latin. The new extensions will be 29LT Zarid Sans LC for Latin and Cyrillic, and 29LT Zarid Sans LG for Latin and Greek. 29LT Zarid Sans LCG will also be available for corporate orders.

The article “Standardized Language Script Suffixes” from Typotheque explains well this system. We will adopt this naming method since it respects every script present in a typeface equally and doesn’t prioritize one over the other. It is also clear and simple compared to previously used suffixes like ‘Std’, ‘Pro’, ‘CE’, ‘ME’, etc. that might be confusing or misleading.

Additionally, we hope that the wording ‘Non-Latin’ stops being used for categorizing all world scripts that are not Latin. It is best to just name each script by its name and categories it based on its linguistic and geographical aspects.

 

29LT Type Design Philosophy

As part of 29LT philosophy, a native and professional type designer knows best how to design and test a set of languages of a script that he/she comprehends. All of the multi-script 29LT fonts are designed by a team of native type designers.

Taking 29LT Zarid Sans as an example; the Arabic script character set is designed by Pascal Zoghbi from Lebanon, the Latin script character set is designed by Jan Fromm from Germany, and the Cyrillic and Greek scripts are designed by Krista Radoeva from Bulgaria. Besides being native speakers and writers of at least one of the scripts/languages they are designing, they are professional type designers with higher education degrees in type design and have good experience in the type design practice. Both Krista and Pascal are graduates of Type and Media from KABK and worked for international type foundries and clients, while Jan is the graduate of the Potsdam University of Applied Sciences in Germany and he was taught and now works for Lucas de Groot in Berlin.

 

The bi-script Arabic and Latin area of expertise will remain the focus of 29LT while expending its team of collaborators and designers to cover additional world scripts. Besides the addition of Cyrillic and Greek scripts to a selection of 29LT fonts, we aim to cover Asian scripts in the future too such as Devanagari, Japanese, Korean, etc.