I started by painting calligraphic letters with brush and gouache, though I wasn't sure what I was aiming for, I just tried to get consistent look with brush. I didn't move forward very quickly until I started sketching with pencil, it was lot easier to figure some traits for the font. For some reason japanese singer Kyary Pamyu Pamyu name was stuck in my head so I sketched her name and realized it looks really nice in round and low. I started thinking of shapes in hiraganas, since I also happened to hear that there doesn't likely even exist a serif font of hiraganas.
|"SAKURA" Hiragana font|
I was afraid it'd look too wannabe-japanese, as I've seen so many horrible hiragana inspired fonts that aren't sophisticated, merely imitating the ornamental aspect of Japanese or Chinese glyphs. Trying to make western alphabet look oriental is just silly. Example granted by google:
|I AM CRYING NOW.......|
It helped out to pick up some words –even if they were silly like Kyaru Pamyu– when trying to figure out what shapes I'm after. After all, it was particularly "k,y,a" that ended up giving most of substance to the font I'm working with.
I chose working title "sukiyaki" for that reason, but it's also kind of fun, since the font looks like it could be used in a logo of a sushi restaurant. Sukiyaki is in fact a japanese dish, sort of hot pot. I thought it's nice wordplay too, "everyone loves sukiyaki" when "suki" means "to like, to love".
Our teacher often repeats a quote of Matthew Carter's: "...type is a beautiful group of letters, not a group of beautiful letters."