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Heavy Competition Results

News | | July 19th, 2022

Dear FontStructors,

The “Heavy” competition has ended and, once again, the staff at FontStruct Towers were overwhelmed by your creativity. Sixty amazing entries! I hope that everyone had fun taking part, and took pleasure in designing and sharing your work. I’m only sorry that we will feature only a few FontStructions in this post.

With judging a more daunting prospect than ever, we sought and found the assistance of a genuine typographical heavyweight. As well as being the managing editor at Fonts in Use and founding partner of design agency Kaune & Hardwig, Florian Hardwig has been a FontStruct supporter since its earliest days. (Of our 2.1 million+ registrations, he is number 99!) He’s also used FontStruct as a tool in his teaching practice in the past, even smuggling FontStruct right into the Bauhaus Archive itself!

Without further ado, Florian’s favourites:

Winner #1 db HeavyLight by beate

db heavy light

Florian wrote:

I’m fond of FontStructions that embrace the limitations of the grid and explore an idea without dialing up the resolution endlessly. db HeavyLight is a great example. The square glyphs with their monospaced width and unconventional weight distribution seem to channel the lettering made by Chris Lebeau in the 1920s. In their playfulness, they also remind me of Ben Shahn’s work. The ingenious thing about db HeavyLight is that the lowercase holds alternate caps, shown white against black. By mixing positive and negative glyphs, one can unleash a fascinating play of figure and ground, of light and dark.

Winner #2 tm about a square by thalamic

tm about a square

Florian wrote:

Blocky typefaces of very heavy height tend to look clunky and boring. It helps to add a dash of white, to open up the black surface a little, and also to hint at counters and stem boundaries. One clever and minimalist way of doing so is to overlay the glyphs with fine lines. In True Cross Fire and Watzlcross, two film faces from the 1970s, this resembles cross hairs. In tm About a Square  I see a more peaceful and pleasant analogy: each glyph looks like a gift, wrapped in paper and tied with a ribbon!

Winner #3 Metaal by four


Florian wrote:

I had a hard time deciding between Metaal and Zwaar, another compelling entry by the same contestant. In the end, Metaal’s fun and (seemingly) simple concept won me over. Basic letterforms defined by monolinear strokes for contours and counters, abutted against each other – just like we used to draw them on graph paper during lesson, while dreaming of the next festival weekend. What makes Metaal so cool is its steep angle. Together with the diagonal terminals that oscillate around the baseline and x-height, it yields a wicked look. This font is a machine for making instant band logos.

Colour Winner: KD Kalyn by architaraz

KD Kalyn

As it turned out, Florian’s choices were all monochromatic although he did admire the colour entries, picking out this one in particular. KD Kalyn by architaraz was also my favourite from among the polychromatics. It’s wonderful that it works, both as a plain single colour design, and as this chunky array of escheresque facets.

The People’s Choice

The People’s choice was Zwaar. So double well-done four!

Honorable Mentions

I seriously recommend that everyone takes a close look at each and every entry – ideally download them and try them out. But here are a few more which I particularily enjoyed:
G1 Defkhan by geneus1, cicmankaputAB4028ii by jirinvk, Moon Machine A by V. Sarela (Yautja), Tennessine Slab by Frodo7, corpus opulentia by tortoiseshell, Ailurophilia FS by Haley Wakamatsu.

Thank you!

Thanks again to everyone who took part.

Thanks to our generous sponsors Glyphs App, the world’s leading desktop font editor for OSX. Glyphs continues to quietly and kindly support FontStruct in 2022.

Last but not least, thanks to our guest judge Florian Hardwig, for gifting us his time and expertise.

Have an idea for our next competition theme? Please add it in the comments.

Happy FontStructing!


  1. architaraz

    Yay! Thank you!

    Congrats to all who participated even though we’re living in somewhat heavy times. My personal favorite was corpus opulentia by tortoiseshell.

    architaraz — July 19, 2022 #

  2. architaraz

    Next competition theme: Impossible

    architaraz — July 19, 2022 #

  3. beate

    I am speechless and would like to thank the jury, Rob and especially guest judge Florian Hardwig, for this incredibly good review. I really didn’t expect that, especially as there were again very, very strong entries in this competition from four, Frodo, jirinvk, Sed4tives and thalamic. 

    beate — July 19, 2022 #

  4. beate

    Congratulations to all of you.

    beate — July 19, 2022 #

  5. frongile

    lightcomp/musiccomp/contrastcomp would be a good idea

    frongile — July 19, 2022 #

  6. BWM

    I had fun building my three entries, especially TenTon, which is literal.

    A good idea for the next competition: Western

    BWM — July 19, 2022 #

  7. elmoyenique

    WOW! I couldn’t be happier, reading the names of my award-winning friends: the magical and beloved Beate, the innovative and unexpected thalamic, the surprising and professional architaraz and the always creative and elegant compañero four (doubly so this time!). With each one of them I have personal ties that have been forged over time and that go beyond the use we make of this fantastic community that is FontStruct, and that make me celebrate effusively: Congratulations, my friends, I always learn with you! ! And I also want to give a big thank you to Florian Hardwig for spending his time with us and BigChief Rob Meek for once again making another great and fun competition possible. You are awesome!

    elmoyenique — July 19, 2022 #

  8. Frodo7

    Congratulations to the winners. Beate, Thalamic, and Four well done! It was a great competition and fun for all of us.

    Frodo7 — July 19, 2022 #

  9. tortoiseshell

    Cheers to the incredibly well deserving victors!

    Many thanks for the honorable mention, it is a (for lack of a better word) great honor to be mentioned~

    tortoiseshell — July 19, 2022 #

  10. thalamic


    Thank you Rob Meek for creating FontStruct and allowing us to exercise our creative/artistic/logical abilities and getting something useful as a result. 

    Thank you to Florian Hardwig for your precious time and esteemed review. 

    Congratulations to all the winners, but quite seriously, congratulations to all the participants because the biggest success is having the ability to engage in the creative process and having the courage to share your creations. The experience gained is a great form of growth. Competitions will come and go but the progress made will be lifelong. Besting yourself is incomparable. 

    Well done, everyone. 

    thalamic — July 19, 2022 #

  11. four

    Thank you Rob and Florian and congratalutions to thalamic and beate and all who took part!

    four — July 20, 2022 #

  12. Anonymous

    A sample of all winners and “honorable mentions” sent in by an anonymous FontStructor:

    Heavycomp Honorable Mentions

    – Anonymous — July 20, 2022 #

  13. elmoyenique

    Great collection here! Let’s go learn!

    elmoyenique — July 20, 2022 #

  14. four

    And of course congratulations to @architaraz!

    four — July 20, 2022 #

  15. Sychoff

    Congratulations to all the winners, you really deserve it. Your fonts are the child of your great love for fonts, creativity and craftsmanship. In my opinion, each font is already a reward, each author has done a great job on their font, put their soul and message into it and passed it on to find its application.
    So thanks to Florian Hardwig for taking on the burden of judging. And Rob Meek, without whom all these fonts would not exist, and of course to all the participants themselves. 

    Sychoff — July 20, 2022 #

  16. Yautja

    Congratulations everyone! And thanks for another fun and inspiring competition.

    Yautja — July 20, 2022 #

  17. blu.

    Congratulations to the winners!

    blu. — July 20, 2022 #

  18. BWM

    This is the first time I saw an image in the comments of one of these news page…

    BWM — July 20, 2022 #

  19. Sed4tives

    Thanks to Rob and Florian, and congratz to all winners!! B-)

    Sed4tives — July 21, 2022 #

  20. geneus1

    Thank you, meek, for the opportunity to stretch font-making muscles. Thanks to Florian for partaking in the difficult task of judging what I believe is the largest number of entries so far in a FontStruct contest.

    Congrats to beate, thalamic, four, and architaraz for the quality and creativity of their font designs. A round of applause for all that have entered and shared their creations. Bravo!

    Next comp?: DecorativeComp (If it was chosen – I would equally love to participate as a judge or a contestant)  :-D

    geneus1 — July 21, 2022 #

  21. Siguy

    Awww… I did not get in the honorable mentions… But that’s okay! It was fun being in this.

    Comments : 2 (Including image)

    Favorites as of this comment was posted : 1

    Downloads : 1

    I can’t wait to compete again!

    Siguy — July 22, 2022 #

  22. Neoqueto

    So many great entries, massive congrats to the winners. 

    Beate surprised me, HeavyLight is such a departure from her usual, meticulously crafted works, certainly a welcome one. This is very much my style.

    tm About a Square from Thalamic is a throwback to the very core of what FontStruct is all about, creative blockiness. Cute and chunky. 

    Four’s Metaal has such a fitting name, I’d love to see a standard, non-outlined variant, but the way the outlines overlap is really unique. However, Zwaar resonates with me more, it has really crazy ornamental letterforms, cool spin on classic blackletter. 

    Architaraz outdid himself again with KD Kalyn, which works really well as a classy, bold, mono typeface, but hides some insane eye-bending 3D shading underneath. Well done, good use of color fonts. 

    Moon Machine A from Yautja has big 80s vibes, such a cute, retro techno font. Fitting even for a Y2K aesthetic. Very universal and varied, maintaining a consistent style throughout. 

    tortoiseshell’s corpus opulentia is faux Bezier taken to a whole different level, it’s so hard to maintain curvatures while mixing it up with details containing many jagged edges. All that works very well combined with a classic, bold art deco face. 

    G1 Defkhan from Geneus1 is honestly everything I could ever expect from him and more. Hyper-detailed, with maximum effort. I really have no idea how does he even do these things. 

    I’ve already used the word “cute” twice, but Ailurophilia FS is as adorable as it gets. I’m getting a cat this week, so this made me even more excited. Thank you, japanyoshi. MISQONDUKT however, is something more along with my personal style, so despite not being particularly readable, I had to mention it, too. 

    cicmankaputAB4028ii is full of geometric patterns, as expected from jirinvk, although to me it looks kinda retro, kinda Donkey Kong-ish thanks to the colors. In its mono form, it does have that heavy feel, as it appears to be made of chains. Well done. 

    I also enjoyed graphicfever’s Scorpions quite a bit, has that Westminster/Data70 feeling, while incorporating some diagonal lines as well. I have actually been working on a much wider and slanted font with surprisingly similar letterforms and ideas for quite some time, so that was cool to see.

    Myself, I did not participate. I do have a couple heavy (and extremely heavy) fonts in the works, and I really don’t like taking advantage of the work I already have done in competitions and challenges. To me, it’s against the point and perhaps a bit unfair. But I didn’t want to strain my already weakening creative muscles by designing something that feels forced, while other thematically matching fontstructions await completion. That said, I really enjoyed this competition, despite not taking part in it!


    Neoqueto — July 22, 2022 #