Several years ago I designed my first font to mimick a style that I and others have painted freehand on many a yacht. I designed it in CorelDraw, a program that I am very familiar with and very comfortable using. Because I did all of the work in CorelDraw without importing the finished font into a professional font editing program it could not be marketed. The problem with simply designing the letters of the alphabet but not utilizing a professional font design program is that you can’t select the font and use it to type a sentence. This didn’t bother me much because I was using the font I designed called Yacht Roman almost exclusively for boat names. The names are short enough that I could simply drag and drop the letters I needed on a baseline, adjust the spacing between each letter and viola, I was ready to go.

A boat done in the 80s using a freehand style of roman lettering developed by myself and others

Fast forward to today. I have a rather large collection of sign and lettering books dating back to the late 1800s. They contain original hand lettered alphabets, showcards, signs, window lettering; you name it. As much as I love lettering, I really love vintage lettering so I decided to create a vintage style font based on a picture in one of these books. The picture is of a showcard used to advertise the 1934 film, Morocco, starring Gary Cooper and Marlene Dietrich.

Part of a page from a 1934 sign book

So far I have created all the capitals and about a third of the lower case characters. Before I even started I invested in a professional font design program. I am still designing first with pencil, then scanning into CorelDraw to convert into a digital image and will then import into the font design program. I have ideas for several more fonts after I publish this one. I may even revisit the Yacht Roman font I never finished.

So, what do you think? Do you believe Morocco could be a cool vintage font?

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