I’m very picky about fonts in general. I think rather than being a connoisseur I’m just straight-up snobbish at this point, picking at what fonts are used in mediums such as comics (even professionally-lettered comics) or on the sides of trucks, but I try to make something good out of that snobbery nonetheless.
Like many fonts, a bunch of Japanese-inspired fonts seem somewhat lazy now (or at least oversaturated in use – no Chinese Takeout, no Kudasai, no Karate anymore pleeeease, they are good fonts but so commonly), to be used on your local buffet restaurant sign or on paper invites to some mundane event. Still, there are a few of which I am font. Ha, see what I did there.
If you have any reservations about the idea of a font based off of origami shapes, put them aside. This is an excellent-looking font by itself, but in execution it shines even better. It’s hot! It’s sharp! Ow, I got a papercut!!
A great font for fans of grunge splatter (which I will admit I am weak to). It’s the only font of its kind that I’ve grown a consistent liking for. I even used a slightly modified version of it for the logo of a game concept in one of my student portfolio pieces. It may have been the only decent part of that piece…
I’m still looking for more good Japanese- or Asian-looking English alphabet fonts (bonus points for brushstroke-style), so if you like any others, show ’em to me!
On another note, fontslikethese drive me absolutely batty, because they so closely resemble Japanese (or try to and fail) that it gets aggravating to look at them.
More Font-Related Niceness
There is more of a variety of nice Japanese fonts than I previously believed. There are really no limitations when it comes to font style in any language, so take a look at these websites for nice sources of fonts.
Ninhongoup’s 10 Beautiful Japanese Fonts – I spent so much time at a few of the sites listed here downloading fonts. I may buy some of the pay ones later on when I have use for them. (Fonts are expensive! But nice!)
I actually have a lot of articles planned right now, all lying dormant due to a momentary dip in language-studying momentum and real-life happenings. Yet all those things pale in face of the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami which has rocked northern Japan.
Last Thursday I went to bed at a decent time, for once. At that point, all I had heard was of a relatively light earthquake in Japan a day or so earlier, which I hoped to be the most of it (I thought something big had already happened). I would wake up and see a frantic Twitter and news of a much bigger earthquake at hand, destruction in Sendai and nearing areas abounding; friends worrying about family; movie-like images streamed and posted on Youtube which were, in fact, real.
I didn’t blog about all this right away because honestly, I have no idea what to say — many Japan bloggers, news outlets, and others have been relentless in their coverage and are doing the best they can for it, and amazingly so. The news gets out there, quickly and in a big way (dominating all top trending topics on Twitter on the 11th), and surely I can do no better to spread news or add anything than English speakers in Japan themselves. All I could do was sit at my computer gawping; here I was making sure some of my newly-acquainted friends residing in Japan were okay (they are, for the most part), which didn’t take long, and watch various news streams throughout the day on Friday and parts of Saturday, checking in on them whenever I could afterward. Others were panicking about friends and family, JETs and others in Japan. Though, for my own reasons, I, too, was very shaken. I watched Obama address the situation on TV, wondering how it would all pan out.
My main Twitter account’s dashboard is still abuzz with news, for which I am thankful; the Twitter dashboard for this blog’s account is still running with news, so much so that it’s hard to discern immediately what is accurate when something is immediately reported (many tweets without source links). I had never seen information roll out quite like this before, and especially not for a country like Japan.
I don’t like making reactionary posts. It’s against my nature, and doesn’t fit with what I do (I could never be a news reporter). So, I’ve been sitting on this article for over a week. I feel as though I can’t continue blogging until I at least acknowledge what happened. And I wanted to do that justice.
One good thing is that this earthquake really isn’t as bad as it could have been…but it’s still pretty awful. I actually admire the preparation involved and the resolve of the people over there. Even more, another good thing is how forthcoming people have been in donating, even in hard economic times. I feel I owe a lot to Japan; besides just loving the culture, it has shaped a good chunk of my life, even indirectly. I was playing Japanese games before I even realized it, games which made an impact on my life and the way I think; Japanese comics opened me to a world where comics were, in fact, not niche in and of themselves. Such creations, culture, and more have inspired me in a powerful way, as they have many others. It’s undeniable, something I embrace openly. It’s really the kind of inspiration I certainly can’t shake off and leave neatly in a boxed past. So, I feel as though I should do something.
What I can do, at least, is link to some of the best sources of news/resources/visuals that I keep referring to over the past weeks.
GlobalGiving caught my eye early on, both because it accepts Paypal as a payment method (a big factor for me, as I avoid using credit) and because its founder is Japanese. It has given updates on how the money’s being used so far.
Art for Japan, in which I will be participating, and will probably make another post about soon.
Nashville Cherry Blossom Festival: now the Nashville Cherry Blossom Japan Relief Event, where you can donate directly to Japan through the Tennessee Tomodachi Fund. It’s this weekend, and I’m going to it. (More info here, too.)