**UPDATE 2/17/16** For those without access to Photoshop or Illustrator and a glyphs panel… there is another way! See this tutorial for more.
This is an interesting bit about typography that many folks do not take advantage of. It involves how to access all glyphs in a font. Did you know about the “Glyphs” panel in Illustrator? The Open Type Panel in Photoshop? Wowsers! The Open Type Panel in Photoshop automatically takes advantage of the lovely features built into a font. The glyphs panel in Illustrator is a dream and gives you access to the wonderful hidden swashes, swooshes, and connections for certain letters that create super elegant typography. These glyphs are not accessible via your keyboard keys.
Enough Yacking. Here’s what I mean.
Before Playing With The Glyphs Panel:
After Playing a Bit With Glyphs in the Glyphs Panel
In fact, I have many “Hidden” glyphs programmed into my very own Matchmaker font as well. They really add icing to the cake.
To access all of these lovely little swashes you would ideally want to use the glyphs panel in Illustrator (Read on below.) But, here is How to Work With Glyphs Panel In Photoshop to ensure your font looks lovely.
With the matchmaker font, there are swashes that work when you type === at the front of your lowercase letters and +++ at the end of them. To ensure they work, you will need to have contextual alternates turned on in your Open Type Panel. Here’s how to turn that feature on.
With the text tool, and an open type font selected, go to the character panel drop down menu.
Select Open Type and then see the options for ordinal numbers, fractions, and more, depending on what is built in to your font. I chose fraction in this example to convert my text to a lovely fraction. You can also have a go at playing with the contextual alternates, ordinals (1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc) and more from this panel.
To Access Glyphs Panel In Illustrator
The glyphs panel in Illustrator is really where all of the magic of fonts happens. This panel gives you access to glyphs you cannot access from your keyboard. Go to Window>Type> Glyphs
Open Your Glyphs panel, type something with your font of choice, and play with alternate glyphs.
I fixed the word “stopping” above to not contain too many swirls. Notice the change in the letter “p.” It got a bit too cluttered with the standard letters.
Here are some ideas of what Open Type Fonts can accomplish:
- Ordinals- (Formats 1st 2nd 3rd, etc)
- Discretionary ligatures (Pretty Little Extras)
- Swashes (Hello!? You can never have too many of these)
What about you? Do you have any favorite fonts chocked full of fabulous “hidden” glyphs?