Contrast: Condor is all about the contrast of thicks and thins. After working with slabs and reversed stress in Manicotti and Trilby, I set out in the opposite direction and began a basic sans serif with exaggerated vertical stress.
Around that time, I found myself taking second glances at commercial lettering I passed in my neighborhood and in my travels,some of it executed in a plain, vaguely thick-and-thin style. In Condor, I attempted to merge the simplicity of these forms with the monumental elegance of Art Deco lettering and design. The result is a distinctive display face, but without a hint of ornamentation.
High-contrast faces have an inherent unevenness, and letter drawers often use strategies like tapering and modeling to temper this effect. I went out of my way to avoid these techniques, choosing to let the contrast do its thing. Condor’s rational structure, open forms and taut curvature only serve to underscore the glimmering texture that the thicks and thins create.
Range: Intended only for display sizes, Condor finds a different kind of versatility in its range of styles. In five widths and six weights, Condor covers a lot of ground, traversing territory between fashion magazines and supermarket tabloids. From urbane sophistication to muscular tension, Condor opens up new stylistic possibilities for the stressed sans.
Italics: You won’t find any cursive forms in Condor. Instead, Condor’s italics employ an extreme angle and tight curves to evoke a sense of speed. Italics are often stuck playing the sidekick, but Condor’s italics have the energy and motion to stand on their own.
Language Support: All styles of Condor contain Font Bureau’s extended Latin character set, which supports all major European languages using the Latin alphabet.
Stylistic alternates: Condor comes with a handful of lowercase alternates, including a single-story a, a tailed l, and a cap-style u.
Numbers: In Condor, you’ll also find a variety of OpenType features for numbers, including arbitrary fractions, superiors, scientific inferiors, and a slashed zero.
And More: Other features of the character set include case-sensitive punctuation, a discretionary www ligature, and arrows for wayfinding. See the OpenType Feature Guide PDF for more details.
- Condor, available for licensing from The Font Bureau
- Font Bureau Newsletter | New Type: Condor
- Typedia Type News: Cold Gray
- Through Thick and Thin, an article of mine about stress and contrast
- FontShop Newsletter | May 4, 2011