- They are the next big thing in graphic design
- They bring multiple colours, shades, textures and transparency to type
- They include vector shapes, bitmap images or even both into font files
Color fonts represent a key evolution in digital typography, introducing rich graphic features into font files. Thanks to new font formats, colour fonts are finally becoming a reality for millions of creatives.
Color fonts can impact any type of text, since they may contain any type of characters, including emojis and icons.
A colour font file is actually just a regular font file that embeds additional data to display more graphic properties than the contour shapes of a character.
Color fonts are now generally stored as SVG data inside OpenType font files. This SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) format can hold vector shapes with colour or gradients, and may also include bitmap images – thus leading to bitmap fonts.
So colour fonts are now officially referred as OpenType-SVG fonts.
What about text scalability?
Good question! Color fonts based on vector glyphs can be resized without any loss, just like any regular font.
Color bitmap fonts, like any other photo or pixel-based image, will scale properly up to a certain size, depending on their original resolution. Beyond that resolution, the lettering will look pixelated.
So whether you print a text with a colour bitmap font or display it on high-resolution screens, you will have to check up to which size it could properly scale.
As colour bitmap fonts will be used in such different contexts like web or print, designers will need several versions of the bitmap font files, with full-size images for desktop editing and downscaled versions for the web.
As an example, I have used the Graphic Font MEGAZERO by Alex Trochut on a new piece of work for my album.
My album will be released on February ninth and here is the proposed artwork …