Non interpolatable shapes
Although the six styles of Tripper belong together, they don’t fluidly interpolate from one style to the other. Don’t be surprised if differences in the design of characters come up while combining different fonts. Here are some examples of the differences between the same character in different weights.
Serifs can have different constructions, or a glyph can be build up out of a different amount of parts in another weight:
It can be pretty hard to define which category Tripper belongs to if you only look at a couple of glyphs. This font family is inconsistent in many ways, mixing slab serif, latin serif and sans serif glyphs within the same style or across different weights. But because everything looks rock solid hardly anybody will notice this, so nothing to worry about. Those concerned with font identification will have a hard time however. In which category does Tripper belong? Sans serif? Serif? Latin? Mixed? Or keep it easy: Stencil. Voilá.
If you look closely, or even from afar, you will quickly notice a complete absence of curves throughout the whole font family. Not a single curve? Yep, only straight lines. This can be handy if you end up in a situation where producing curves is complicated, but also when you are just not in the mood for curves.
The bridges – essential to a stencil font – have the same width across all styles, so you can safely apply all styles in the same size without the risk of stencils falling apart. A bridge in a large glyph, like capital A in Tripper Light, has exactly the same width as a bridge in a small glyph (like superior a) in Tripper Black.
A whole bunch of OpenType features supply Tripper with some extra horsepower. Check the website for a complete overview. Here is one example: inline accents. Accents which don’t exceed the height of the capital. The position (inside/outside) of the accents varies per letter per weight.
TRIVIAL ASPECTS OF DETAILS
Congratulations! You’ve made it all the way to the bottom of this text. Our compliments. You are definitely into type, because who else wants to reads about the nitpicking details of a font family? So now the wheat is separated from the chaff, we can go deeper.
Tripper is a display typeface; this was kept in mind during every design decision made throughout the creation process. Tripper is tightly spaced, to make text look compact and strong in display sizes. In case you want to use Tripper for longer texts in smaller text sizes – at this point the Apple store employee would say: ‘This is not recommended’ – you might want to add some tracking. Take that as a personal tip from the creators.
Although one should probably spend his time drinking beers with friends in the pub instead of talking about kerning, a few words can still be said about the kerning of Tripper. As all our fonts, Tripper is manually kerned. However, Tripper has “stencil kerning” instead of regular kerning.
Stencil kerning means that you can set a complete text and cut that all out at once, to be used as a stencil (in contradiction to traditional stencil texts, which are sprayed letter by letter). The bridges have the same width for every glyph throughout all Tripper fonts, which prevents the stencils unexpectedly collapsing in weak spots. All weak spots are equally weak. Tripper has been kerned in such a way that a too-thin “bridge” in between two letters would either be either positively kerned to gain the minimally required joint width, or negatively kerned to overlap with the previous shape so you can cut it as one shape. Now you can safely create real stencils for a complete text all at once, without any unexpected collapsions.
A tiny gap in between 2 letters would definitely fall apart if you cut it as part of a stencil. Instead, Tripper’s stencil-kerning will make sure that the space in between 2 letters is as big as the width of a bridge:
In other cases, kerning will be negative in order to produce a solid stencil:
Besides, if you really like kerning you can probably acknowledge the value it provides. Oh man, those details. Kerning will probably create niceties without you even realizing. For example, capital T and capital J make a straight line, much easier to cut by hand, as well as looking more robust.
So this is what we call stencil kerning. Now you have some new kerning info to talk about next time you’re with friends in the pub. Good luck.