Remolino Stencil

by Frodo7

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Yesterday afternoon I was sipping Coke on a sunny terrace and thinking about life, and the universe, when an idea came out of the blue about a new stencil font. The idea was so simple, I almost felt ashamed not having it much earlier. Back home I started to work on it, and created the first set of letters. It's a work in progress, fraught with imperfections, including the usual spacing-kerning problems. Remolino is a Spanish word for vortex.
Info Created on 30th April 2010 . Last edited on 19th May 2011.
License Creative Commons
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I'm jealous. It's got wonderful energy.
Comment by intaglio 1st May 2010
Comment by Frodo7 1st May 2010
love the sample. it really shows your work to great advantage. again, wonderful movement within the glyphs. and the shapes are elegant as well. it is amazing how fonts come to us. much like a songwriter who hears a melody before anyone else, we must also 'hear' our fonts before others do. nice job.
Comment by funk_king 1st May 2010
Wonderful - it looks as though you have run your fingers through it to produce these sinuous shapes.
Comment by p2pnut 1st May 2010
Looks great, for some reason it reminds me of the stylised version of the British Flag. I think because each character can be split into 3 or 4 different colours. My only crit would be 'w'. Is there anyway you can can have it curling up in the middle, rather than perfectly flat, also have you though of making a shorter 'r' a bit like the 't'?
Comment by djnippa 1st May 2010
Congratulations! FontStruct Staff have deemed your FontStruction worthy of special mention. “Remolino Stencil” is now a Top Pick.
Comment by afrojet 1st May 2010
Great direction. There's some twisting three-dimensionality at certain sizes. I want to clone it. I like the story of inspiration too. Although the "Coke" seems out of place. Maybe it doesn't have the poetry of say, an espresso or a cigarette or a tumbler of Whiskey. But hey, if it led to the production of this FontStruction, then stay the course.
Comment by afrojet 1st May 2010
It reminds me of a windmill toy! :-)
Comment by riccard0 1st May 2010
Cool, sophisticated, masterful. Win.
Comment by thalamic 1st May 2010
I love it...great job.
Comment by aphoria 1st May 2010
Thank you very much for your comments and votes. This work is an end of a long quest to find a way how to create a stencil font of this kind on FS.

@intaglio: Believe it or not, you were on my mind when I was working on some particular letters. I thought, you would shape it just the way I did (e.g. those little spikes at the end of the strokes, they were added later).

@funk_king: You've said it beautifully: the "fonts come to us". I was looking for this font for months, carrying around some sketches and samples with me all the time. They all suffered from being too complicated and polygonal. You are right about the songwriter and the melody. One could not put it more clearly.

@p2pnut: How interesting these shapes draw different pictures, metaphors in peoples minds. I thought at some point it looked like toothpaste squeezed out in three colours.

@djnippa: The Union Jack, interesting. I just wrote about the toothpaste tricolor. I might do some demo pic in red, blue and white. Special thanks for the critique. This is the sort of feedback, practical info I was looking for when I decided to publish this work half finished. I've modified the "r" accordingly, and it looks a lot better. The flat bottom "w": well, I've made a new version, but it looks inconsistent with the rest of the set. I'm not sure whether it was really what you suggested.

Comment by Frodo7 1st May 2010
I'm agree, the basic shapes have an "intaglioish" flavour, but the treatment is 100% Frodo7, a new genetically mutated fontstructor is born !
More seriously, the illusionary 3d effect reminds me some of your past scientifically crafted optical fonts. It seems that now you have the maturity not only to study and adapt to Fontstruct existing illusionary patterns, but to work on more personal designs integrating unconsciously, "naturally" in a much more subtle way effects derivated from your past studies. Great improvement in your own path.

Also, I find your aternate v absolutely cute and delicious.
Comment by Abneurone Fluid Types 1st May 2010
@afrojet: Thank you for the special mention. The font is only half done. I hope it won't disappoint you when completed. You are right about the 3D, and this is where it gets very exciting. I plan to make a set of small caps, and a version of lighter weight.

You can clone it. It's a great honor to me that a pro designer sees potential in my work. I've changed the license, it remains open for cloning for a day. Other honest members are also welcome, if they're interested. I'm thrilled to see some new version(s) I would never imagined. And I can imagine a lot of things. I'm also aware of my own limits, and the huge potential of cross-pollination of ideas. I keep my works locked only to prevent copying and potential abuse by third parties. Sales for profit at some time in the future is not completely out of the picture.

I wish, I could have written something more fanciful, but this is how it happened. (How about this: Drinking good old ale with friends in The Green Dragon and smoking pipe-weed - longbottom leaf, of course.) But the exact location, the drink, and the scenery are not important. What is important, that after a tumultuous week I had a few minutes of perfect peace and happiness, and got the idea and inspiration for this font.
Comment by Frodo7 1st May 2010
@neurone error: Thank you for your comment. I've made a lot more alternative characters before deciding what went to this version. The whole creation process is like a tree: hard choices at every branching. It's funny, but I don't feel any mutation or major change. What I know, that a couple of months ago I turned my focus to stencil fonts. I wanted to have more stencils in my portfolio, some with quite original features, and with strong visual impact. I've done some research, some experimenting, brainstorming, and now I have 4-5 promising designs in the incubator. The first two hatchlings were Boikot and Remolino. It's only a matter of inspiration and having enough spare time before the others will emerge from the eggs. What I'm saying is that the whole process is more conscious, preplanned and managed for me, in contrast to what you've suggested.
Comment by Frodo7 2nd May 2010
You are THE scientist of Fontstruct, shame on me to have suggested you had let a more unconcious aspect inject itself in your work.
Comment by Abneurone Fluid Types 2nd May 2010
@neurone error: Sorry, I wasn't clear enough. Of course, the "unconscious" is essential in any creative work. I used the word "inspiration" for the same thing. No amount of planning would result in a new font without a great deal of inspiration. Inspiration is the key. Planning and management only help to stay focused. I also tend to deviate from the original idea and go wherever my Muse takes me. It's a small miracle that anything gets done at all.
Comment by Frodo7 2nd May 2010
You see? This happens when FS gives you more tools... you make (in a blink of an eye) other sorpresive and unique typographical masterpiece of art! My most sincere congratulations, Señor Frodo7!
Comment by elmoyenique 2nd May 2010
Nooo, I'm wrooong... No new toolsss here, just wooork and imaginatiooooon!!! Very, very great work this your one. I beg your pardon for my previous scatterbrained comment.
Comment by elmoyenique 2nd May 2010
@elmoyenique: Thank you for your comments. Your second guess was right: no fancy FS 2.0 tools have been used here. How do you like the font name? Sometimes it's difficult to find a good name for a font.
Comment by Frodo7 2nd May 2010
"Remolino": this is a name with much elegance and pleasing sound, it fits very well to what your font lets see the person who stops to watch it slowly. A very good choice IMHO, you are using Spanish names very well. Soon we will see you writing in my language, apreciado señor.
Comment by elmoyenique 2nd May 2010
WOW can we call you the Stencil man ? nice work
Comment by Michel Troy ~UrbanPixel~ (Upixel) 3rd May 2010
@Upixel: Thank you for your comment and generous vote. It gives me much needed inspiration. I'm working on the capitals at the moment. As usual, it takes more than one attempt to get some glyphs right.
Comment by Frodo7 3rd May 2010
Good shapes and effects!
Comment by Sergio Berkenbrock (gray.scale) 4th May 2010
Congratulations! FontStruct Staff have deemed your FontStruction worthy of special mention. “Remolino Stencil” is now a current Featured FontStruction.
Comment by afrojet 4th May 2010
Comment by djnippa 4th May 2010
Many of us build fonts, you build font-arts, no one can doubt about my words after seeing this work. 10/10 again.
Comment by elmoyenique 4th May 2010
I'm agree with all, but, hey, guys, let him breath, he has not finished yet !!!
Comment by Abneurone Fluid Types 4th May 2010
@afrojet: Thank you for selecting my work for Featured Download. This is a special recognition I still have to earn by finishing the set.

@djnippa: Eight different versions for a letter! Now I can see better your point. I really like the 1st,3rd, and 4th. I've made one identical with the 4th version, but I thought the bottom notch was too small to make any difference. Not anymore. Thank you for your help.

Comment by Frodo7 4th May 2010
@Frodo7 I think you've got the final characters in you. Onward towards the final push!
Comment by afrojet 5th May 2010
Congratulations on the Featured spot. It just keeps on getting better.
Comment by p2pnut 5th May 2010
How did you make that?! I saw it first hand and soon it gave me an idea for something. I am Qaj, I have been trying to find a language for myself. Which bricks did you use? I'd love to learn how you work them? Please, help a new comer...
Comment by Qaj 5th May 2010
@Qaj: Thank you for your comment. I gladly help you if I could.

First, it is very important to have a good idea to start with. What sort of letters have in mind, what style, for what particular purpose. I usually start making sketches on square paper with pencil, and/or marker pen. I start with the most difficult letters to fit in the grid (e,s) or the ones with diagonal strokes.

The next stage is to build the font in Fontstructor using the selection of bricks. That's easy, since I already considered the possible bricks on the square paper. You can start working straightaway in Fontstructor omitting the first stage completely, but for me paper & pencil is still the most flexible medium for brainstorming.

Third stage: a series of refinements until I am happy with the result.

In this case with Remolino Stencil I've set the filters to 2:2 (select Advanced > View > Filters, set the values of both the Horizontal and Vertical Brick Size to 2.) This magnifies the bricks to equal four squares on the grid, and consequently gives you more freedom to place the bricks. You can see my selection of bricks on the picture. Very simple bricks, nothing special really.

You can also learn a lot by dissecting and reverse engineering some good fonts, in cases where cloning is permitted in the license. You can make your own modified version under the same license as an exercise to hone your skills. That's all.

What do you mean by "trying to find a language for myself"?
Comment by Frodo7 5th May 2010
Frodo7, you could open a class, you are a really good fontstruct teacher !
Comment by Abneurone Fluid Types 5th May 2010
@neurone error: Actually, I thought about opening a forum for FS tutorials and ask some seasoned masters to share their secrets. We don't really have a forum here for that purpose (yet); some of them already shared very useful pieces of knowledge (e.g. brickstacking) before. The atmosphere here has been always very friendly and helpful, and not much secretive, and that alone sped up innovation and steadily improved the quality of works.
Comment by Frodo7 5th May 2010
I am coming up wit my own conlang and I've already made few. But there is one that I am having trouple with. But When I saw your's it hit me. But I won't steal, because that is what God want's me not to do. But, if I could. may I modle?
Comment by Qaj 6th May 2010
Very nice this is your work! Congratulations!
Training it's week? :-)
Comment by stoni 6th May 2010
Wow...I think I'll download this. It's so pretty. Great job! :D
Comment by FerreTrip 7th May 2010
This is very very nice. I like the dimensionality it has, and that J is just killer. Excellent work!
Comment by LexKominek 7th May 2010
Look at my All God's Script... He's an example text I've did!
Hope you like it.
Comment by Qaj 7th May 2010
@LexKominek: I've made another version for the J, a more modest one. Your comment is the reason I keep this one as a default.

@Qaj: You are a rare mind around here (as folks making fonts in their spare time would not be queer enough). You invent scripts with ease, whole systems of writing with their "alphabets", and create some nice fonts for them. This is a whole new level of abstraction in typography, and don't expect much understanding from us literate almost exclusively in Latin script. We marvel at your works without much comprehension.

I ventured outside the realm of traditional scripts only once. See my Tengwar script Elrond .
Comment by Frodo7 7th May 2010
I agree with you on all that. Thank you for you comment. I hope to have a fav from somebody here on one of my fonts. If you know, have you heared of I have two of my scripts there. Check it out.
Comment by Qaj 7th May 2010
i love it !!
Comment by zen_killa 7th May 2010
@Qaj: Yes, I know well. It helped me a few times with useful information about obscure scripts I was looking for. Having two scripts listed there is a great achievement. What scripts are we talking about?
Comment by Frodo7 8th May 2010
Wow, who says “stencil” and “sexy” can’t be used in the same sentence? NICE.
Comment by fugitiveglue 8th May 2010
Acttual one I did was made on paint and the other here. The one from paint is Qelsh and the one made on this site is High Hwarian.
Comment by Qaj 10th May 2010
Look at my other comments on the Elfen Nenuial Meldraug font. There are two!
Comment by Qaj 10th May 2010
I will do that! Read the rest in my comment in Elfen Nenuial Meldraug.

P.S If you are wondering... Nenuial Meldraug is my Elvish name. I have a book by Ruth S. Noel called The Languages Of Tolkien's Middle Earth! I came up with the name.
Comment by Qaj 10th May 2010

Comment by cewill75gt1hb 14th May 2010
@cewill75gt1hb: Is it a sign of a senior moment, or a serious distraction?

I often observed, if I wanted to focus on something, there was always something else to interrupt, hinder or thwart my effort. The only reason I could manage to do anything at all was because a third thing interfered with the second one...

Comment by Frodo7 14th May 2010