Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Font of the Week #23: Cavetto Roman and Italic

Good morning! This week’s font of the week features the Cavetto family from the Jukebox type library.


   Originally designed in 2001-2002, Cavetto is the result of my desire to create a true text face based on the old Bodoni and Didot type from the late 18th Century. The name ‘Cavetto’ comes from an architectural term that refers to a molding that has a quarter circle profile.

   Designing a text face is no small task and requires a different set of skills than a display typeface. Text faces must be much more exacting in terms of spacing and I learned so much valuable information from designing Cavetto in those early days.

   The knowledge I gained from working on this font gave me skills that I later used to design my “Empyrean” family which was a more mature text face. Later I used this same skill set for the “Eloquent” Family which is a digital revival of Pistilli Roman and is a cross-over between text and display type.


   The Italic Alternate face that accompanies the Cavetto family is based loosely on an old photo-lettering face called Torino. I later ended up adding a full and true digital revival of that face to the Jukebox library. At the time of designing Cavetto however, it served as an inspiration for how a swash italic might look for a Bodoni style font. The original Bodoni fonts (as far as I know) never had swash italic variants, unlike their Garamond and Caslon predecessors.

   Bodoni and Didot were late 18th Century type designers whose designs became known as “Modern” Typefaces despite being so long ago. For the time, they were considered modern due to the more machined look that the letterforms had over previous designs from the 17th and early 18th centuries. Modern typefaces are recognized by their thin serifs and heavy contrast between thick and thin strokes, as well as vertical stress axis on letters like e or o. Cavetto follows in this tradition and is available from Veer as part of the Jukebox library.

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