iPad Review: Making fonts with iFontMaker

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What do you think of my typeface? I named it SG Funny Face. I made it on my iPad and I want to give you a quick review of the iPad application I used to make it. Before I start, I also wanted to give you a copy of the font. Click here to visit the SG Funny Face page and download your own copy. It's free and you can use it however you want.

The font creation app is called iFontMaker by The 2TTF. (Visit The 2TTf site or the application's page on iTunes). It's for the iPad and sells for $8. (An FYI: I paid for my software. This isn't an ad for them.)

iFontMaker on the iPadDoes the application work? Yes and it?s surprisingly fun and easy to use. It provides guides and several different sets of sample letters for you to draw on top of. It?s sort of like finger painting an alphabet. Each letter you draw fills the full screen so you can fine tune your drawing.

The program provides basic editing functions and drawing options. There are 3 pen styles, a paintbrush, a calligraphy pen, and a pencil, all of which you can vary in thickness. You can undo multiple brush strokes on each letter you?re drawing. You can resize everything you?ve drawn within an individual letter or move an entire letter around.

You can make do more than a standard English font as well. There is glyph support for multiple languages.

Once you?ve made your font you can preview it using any phrase you like. If you?re happy with it, you can then send it through their web site and download a true type font file, a TTF. It?s a universal font format that you can use on your computer or through modern web browsers and embed it into web pages. Really cool stuff.

It?s not a perfect program, but it?s also a young program. Based on the authors' Twitter page, it seems they have a roadmap for future development.

How could it be better? I found myself wanting better editing tools. For example, if you want to edit a brush stroke on an existing letter, you have to undo your work up until the point it was made. There?s no fine tuning of an existing brush stroke.

Another place for improvement would be to include bezier drawing tools. In it?s current form iFontMake is great for making fonts that have a hand-drawn look. You?re not going to be creating the next Helvetica with the current set of tools though. The fine level control doesn't possible now.

Even with those caveats, if you?ve got an itch to make your own font, you?re bound to have fun playing with this app.

Comments on this post.

That is a super cool program, though. Even with those caveats, that sounds like a lot of fun.

By Erik Hanberg on Jul 19 2010

Yeah. It is fun. Let me know if you try it.

By John Morton on Jul 20 2010

Last night, July 27, 2010, iFontMaker had a nice update. You can now edit individual strokes on letters. It’s a nice update and addresses some of the things I mentioned in the post above. If that was stopping you from trying it, this may change your mind.

By John Morton on Jul 28 2010

Nice app, great for those long trips on the train to work, always wanted to make my own fonts! Thanks for the share.

By cygnett on Aug 16 2011

This looks an awefull lot like Comic Sans to me , But cool to see how iFont works

By Decidebay on Dec 01 2011

It’s a fun program. It’s amazing to see how wide the possibilities are with tablet applications. It’s going to continue to get better too, imo.

By John Morton on Dec 01 2011

How do I use the font on my iPad?

By David on Sep 04 2012

I don’t think there is a way to add a new font to your iPad, but this is a fun tool for making a font on your iPad for use on your desktop computer.

By John Morton on Sep 04 2012

i agree with you post. lacks tools to be precise but its really a good app worth its price.. i made my first font right away. great for hand draw typefaces even complex ones. really fun!

By juju on Oct 13 2012

my brush is stuck on 5.0? How can I make the radius work? No slider shows up. Just 5.0.

By Cooper on May 14 2015

I just tried mine and I’m having the same issue. The app page in the iTunes store currently has a note that says:

####IMPORTANT!! Some user-interface related bugs are reported on iOS 8.3.
We are reworking on the entire App, which is expected to be released late April - early May 2015.
It will be the biggest “free” update for all the exiting and new users.

Since it’s May 22 as I write this, it looks like the app developers haven’t made their hoped for release date. Hopefully they will have the update available soon.

By John Morton on May 22 2015

thank you! It was working fine then all of a sudden I couldn’t change the radius. Thank you for replying and letting me know.:)

By Cooperscoolcastle on May 22 2015

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