tm Strokes

by thalamic

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In the font preview window above, click Pixel and then Shift+Pixel 4 times to see the full effect of the font.

I remember from back when I was learning Japanese, that the stroke order in writing hiragana, katakana, and kanji was important. I didn't get very far in my Japanese studies, but even then some of the kanji were like 17 strokes each, and each with a specific order of marking the strokes. Thinking of what would be appropriate for a number competition, I recalled the number and order of strokes per glyph idea. Hence, this font. 

The idea brought with it an inherent text font sensibility. Deciding on the slope of the diagonal strokes was tricky as they rendered those letter either too wide or too narrow. The correct choice was a slope with a flat top or bottom. That allowed the width of the letter whatever I wanted but the flat top took away from the natural marking of the stroke, as in: no one actually writes an A with a horizontal top stroke. Settled on the current slope and width. Still, the letters came together fairly quickly; the kerning not so much. Whether they were adjusted or not, around 10,000 kerning pairs were checked. More than 2500 kerning pairs are included here...and many more still remain. How good or consistent the kerning is is for other's to judge.

Some of the glyphs are quirky, I know. There are already hundreds of thousands of exceptional standard text fonts. No point redoing those. 

Due to the need to show the strokes individually, the font came out as stencil. That was an unintentional byproduct of the idea.

Some strokes are split in two to show distinction between the crossing strokes, but technically they would be continuous. 

The strokes are based on my own handwriting style; others may do it differently. For example, when being careful, I write the Z in three strokes, whereas I suspect others probably write it in one. 

This is not a color font even though it is auto-charcterized as one because at one point I experimented with making the stroke-order numbers gray. I thought about copy-pasting the glyphs in a new FS, but the follow-up thought of having to redo the kerning quickly put a stop to that madness.

For best view of the font, download & install and check out some long block of text in Word with kerning turned on. (This articles explains how to activate kerning in Word.)


People who love calligraphy know that you have to start drawing a letter in a certain position and then follow a series of concatenated steps to achieve a good result. If you extend this to an entire typography, you may encounter some problems, because each glyph has to be resolved in several different ways depending on whether it is accompanied by one or another letter, in front or behind... It is the ductus, a fascinating world that we see here!

Comment by elmoyenique Fri, 10th may

I'm in love with that Ampersand !

Comment by Sed4tives Fri, 10th may

presicion 💯

Comment by digitalio-2 Fri, 10th may

Oh, you forgot to make a picture with an example of the font numbers, I think you still have some time. The font itself is well balanced and just looks clean and nice without numbers and arrows, I noticed these expanding endings of strokes. Maybe you'll make a version of just stencil later.

Comment by Dmitriy Sychiov (Sychoff) Sun, 12th may

Thank you, all. 

@Elmoyenique: I'm not sure what you mean. 

@SED4TIVES: Thanks. It's how I normally write it out. 

@digitalio-2: I tried. 

@Dmitriy: I didn't forget the sample. I've just been busy with non-font-related other projects. I'll do one soon.

And I'll clone and make a normal version of this font. I plan to include Cyrillic in it as well. I'll appreciate your guidance on those characters if you get the chance to look them over. Thank you. 

Comment by thalamic Mon, 13th may

@thalamic: I was just trying to explain the reason for the little numbers and arrows that appear in your glyphs, but apparently I wasn't very efficient. Sorry.

Comment by elmoyenique Mon, 13th may

I'm trying to upload an animated gif file but it uploads as a png. Are gif files no longer allowed? 

Comment by thalamic Fri, 17th may
Comment by thalamic Sat, 18th may


i don't think gifs are removed

Comment by digitalio-2 Sat, 18th may

looks like the gifs aren't removed

Comment by digitalio-2 Sat, 18th may
Comment by elmoyenique Sat, 18th may

oh so that was the gif?

Comment by digitalio-2 Sat, 18th may

@digitalio-2: Thank you for the test image and update on animated gifts. 

@elmoyenique: Thank you for the animated gif sample. I tried uploading several versions of my sample animated gif but either the Submit button doesn't work or it uploads only the first frame as a png. I'll try again one last time. 

Comment by thalamic Sat, 18th may
Comment by thalamic Sat, 18th may

Wonderful gifT!

Comment by elmoyenique Sat, 18th may

Excellent sample, beautifully illustrating your concept!

Comment by four Sat, 18th may

I'd like to say a few words about this fine work. The proportions are beautiful. However, the A, V, and W are wider than necessary. Try using custom bricks of steeper 1:4 incline. The G, g, and R need more work, too. The N and Z are superb. I know it isn't easy to get them right. My suggestion for the R is to combine elements of the B and K (see picture). I like the polygonal shapes. Kudos for the documentation and demo pictures. I hope you build the Hiragana and Katakana set soon. Congratulations. 10/10

Comment by Frodo7 Tue, 21st may

I apologize; my picture is way too big.

Comment by Frodo7 Tue, 21st may

Thanks, four. 

@Frodo7: Thank your for the constructive critique and the time to build the updated R. I am working on a non-numberscomp version of this font. I will try out all your suggestions on that. The breaks in this font were based on the stroke order. I will try alternative brakes that look nicer in the other version. 

Comment by thalamic Wed, 22nd may
Congratulations! FontStruct Staff have deemed your FontStruction worthy of special mention. “tm Strokes” is now a Top Pick.
Comment by Rob Meek (meek) Thu, 23rd may

Congrats, Master!

Comment by elmoyenique Thu, 23rd may

Congrats, Master!

Comment by elmoyenique Thu, 23rd may


Comment by Re Sa (trensatucom) Sat, 1st june

sips don't lie

Comment by krplnci Tue, 11th june

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