How to Make Your Own Handwriting Font for Digital Planners

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How to Make Your Own Handwriting Font for Digital Planners

Ever looked at your handwriting and thought, "Gee, I wish this could be a font!"? Well, you're in luck! Today, we're diving into the wonderful world of font creation. Specifically, we're going to transform your unique handwriting into a digital font for your digital planner. Exciting, right? Let's get started! 

Preparing for Font Creation

Create a Outline for Your Font Design

Before you dive in, take a moment to think about what you want your font to look like. Do you want it to be casual or formal? Do you want to include special characters or symbols? Jot down your ideas to create an outline for your font design.

Choose a Good Font for Reference

Choosing a good font is like choosing a good outfit. It needs to suit the occasion (or in this case, your digital planner), and it needs to reflect your style. Your handwriting already does that, so you're off to a great start but using a reference font will help you to create a cohesive set of characters for your font. Look for a font that closely resembles your natural handwriting if you like or choose a font that you wish your handwriting looked like.

Make Your Fundamental Font Design Choices

Next, let’s decide on the basics. Will your font be serif or sans serif? Will it be bold or light? These decisions will guide your font creation process.

Starting Your Font Design

Start Your Font Design from Scratch

Now, it's time to start drawing! Grab tools of choice and start sketching out your characters. Don't worry about making them perfect – the charm of a handwriting font is in its imperfections!

Draw Your Letters, Numbers, Punctuation and more

Start with the basics: the alphabet. Draw each letter in both uppercase and lowercase. Then, move on to numbers and punctuation. You can then move on to glyphs and ligatures depending on how much you want to fill out your font.

Digitizing Your Handwriting into a Font

Get Your Designs on Your Computer

If you are using pen and paper to create your designs you will need to digitize them once you're happy with your characters. You can do this by scanning your drawings or taking a high-resolution photo. Open Adobe Illustrator and convert them into vectors with the image trace tool, remove the background by selecting ignore white.

Create your Designs on Your Computer

You can create your designs directly in Adobe Illustrator on your computer and skip the nuances of converting your paper designs into digital designs. The best way to do this would be to use your iPad as a drawing tablet which you can do so using Astropad. Then all you would do is use your iPad and Apple Pencil and draw out your shapes using the blob brush or any method you like in Adobe Illustrator.

Convert Any Shape into a Character with Fontself Maker

Select your vectors for numbers (0-9), lowercase and uppercase in separate batches and the tool will then convert your drawings into a digital font corresponding to the correct numbers or letters. You can then create more characters in batches by typing or pasting in the character/s separated by a comma then highlighting the corresponding designs and selecting create glyphs. Make sure that any designs that have more than one shape are grouped together before you import it into fontself so that they are recognized as a single character and not separate characters.

Refining Your Font Design

View Your Font in Preview Mode

Once your font is digitized and added to your Fontself Maker extension window, you can use the live preview to see how your characters look together. This will give you a better idea of any adjustments you need to make.

Test Your Font Design at Line Level

Type out a few sentences to see how your font looks in action. Pay attention to the spacing between characters and lines, and adjust as necessary. Or try using the smart spacing and kerning button to automatically adjust your font.

Study Other Typefaces

Take a look at other fonts that you like. What makes them appealing? Is it the curve of the 's', the slant of the 'e', or the loop of the 'g'? Studying other typefaces can give you ideas for refining your own.

Scale Your Font Design Down

Try reducing the size of your font. Does it still look good? If not, you might need to adjust the thickness of your strokes or the size of your characters.

Print Your Font Design

Printing your font can give you a new perspective. Sometimes, things look different on paper than they do on screen. So, print out a sample of your font and see how it looks.

Enhancing Your Font

Add Special Characters to Your Font Design

Want to add a little extra flair to your font? Consider adding special characters, like ligatures or alternates. These can give your font a unique touch and make it even more personal.

Explore Different Styles, Weights, and Widths

Try experimenting with different styles (like italic or bold), weights (like light or heavy), and widths (like condensed or extended). These variations can add depth to your font and make it more versatile.

Using and Sharing Your Font

Export Actual OpenType Fonts

Once you're happy with your font, it's time to export it. In the Fontself Maker extension you can add more information about your font who created it and how it can be used. Once you are happy with the information for the font you can then save the font as an OTF file.

Using Your New Font

Now for the fun part: using your new font! Install your font on your computer, iPad or iPhone then open up your digital planner, select your font and start typing or use the scribble feature with your apple pencil. Voila! Your notes are now in your very own handwriting font.

Take Your Font Design Global

Feeling proud of your font? Why not share it with the world? You could upload it to a font marketplace for others to use for free, or you can sell it on Etsy or make your own website using Shopify.

The Importance of Your Handwriting

In this digital age, handwriting might seem like a lost art to many but it's not! Your handwriting is as unique as your fingerprint. It's a part of your identity, and it adds a personal touch to your digital planner. But sometimes we need to get the information on the page as quickly as possible, which means either messy handwriting or typing it out.

Why Turn Your Handwriting into a Font?

Turning your handwriting into a font allows you to maintain that personal touch and neat aesthetics even when you need the speed of typing or scribbling notes. Plus, it's a fun project that lets you flex your creative muscles.