Color Fonts (also known as Chromatic Fonts) are the latest technological advancement in the world of typography and the next step in the evolution of typesetting. We’re all familiar with digital fonts that progressed from the concept of movable type, but one drawback that those two systems have in common is each character can only be produced in a single colour. Digital type can of course be modified with an array of text effects and customisations, but the new wave of Color Fonts use the OpenType SVG format to save colour, texture and transparency information directly into the font file. Essentially, Color Fonts are character sets of full colour graphics that provide exciting opportunities for creating vibrant typefaces.

Color Fonts

Color Fonts are quickly gaining traction after support was included in Adobe programs, but the technology is already in use in the form of webfonts and the emoji keyboard on your smart phone. The add-on for Photoshop and Illustrator named Fontself is equipping creatives with the tools to experiment with Color Fonts by turning any kind of graphic into a character for a typeface. Some early examples of Color Fonts seem to have fallen victim to the novelty of being able to include vibrant colours and as a result can be quite garish, but one application I’m personally intrigued by is the idea of using Color Fonts to produce brush fonts in order to preserve the transparency and detail of the brush stroke. Existing brush fonts have to be vectorized from the original scan, so all that lovely detail is lost.

Still being in its infancy, the selection of quality Color Fonts is still fairly small, but I’ve scoured the web for all the interesting examples I could find. Check out these Color Font offerings and watch out for how designers find clever and unique ways to harness this new technology.

Heady Rough OpentypeSVG

Heady Rough OpentypeSVG

Silver chrome and aluminum 3D font

Silver chrome and aluminum 3D font

Macbeth – OpenType SVG Font

Macbeth - OpenType SVG Font

Crude OpenTypeSvg

Crude OpenTypeSvg

Flow SVG

Flow SVG

Beast SVG font & Graphics Pack

Beast SVG font & Graphics Pack

FoilBalloon – Color bitmap font

FoilBalloon - Color bitmap font

Posy

Posy

Rocked SVG Font

Rocked SVG Font

Avallon OpenType-SVG Font

Avallon OpenType-SVG Font

Watercolor font

Watercolor font

Neon – OTF colour font

Neon - OTF colour font

Tribal Aleut OTF color font

Tribal Aleut OTF color font

MEMPHIS Type Collection

MEMPHIS Type Collection

FLEURO Colour Font

FLEURO Colour Font

Aires Font

Aires Font

Batik India Color Font

Batik India Color Font

Beach Towel Color Font

Beach Towel Color Font

Mempix Multicolor Font

Mempix Multicolor Font

Alphabet watercolor

Alphabet watercolor

Popsky Multicolor

Popsky Multicolor

Thinks Opentype SVG

Thinks Opentype SVG

Color Block – Colored Font

Color Block - Colored Font

OneLine Bold color font

OneLine Bold color font

Moligne – SVG Font Duo

Moligne - SVG Font Duo

Locus Sans Display and Color Font

Locus Sans Display and Color Font

Butter Love – Opentype SVG Dry Brush

Butter Love - Opentype SVG Dry Brush

Bluesky OpentypeSVG Font

Bluesky OpentypeSVG Font

HBPENCIL SVG Font

HBPENCIL SVG Font

Almonte – OpenType SVG Font

Almonte - OpenType SVG Font

Pure Heart – OpenType SVG Brush Font

Pure Heart - OpenType SVG Brush Font

Take Charge – OpenTypeSVG Brush Font

Take Charge - OpenTypeSVG Brush Font

Lightbox Color Font

Lightbox Color Font

Atmosfhira Opentype SVG Colorfont

Atmosfhira Opentype SVG Colorfont

Fiesta Color Font

Fiesta Color Font

Abelone

Abelone

Gilbert

Gilbert

Bungee

Bungee

Bixa Color

Bixa Color

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13 Comments

  1. This is a great and awesome post and a couple days i have searched this type of post, Now i am so glad to see these awesome instructions.

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  2. Not such a “late technological advancement” though. In the late 1980s to early 1990s the Amiga computing platform was going strong. There was a font package for it called “Kara Fonts”. While the Amiga computer and the Kara Font package were well ahead of it’s time, modern computers are much more useful. It is refreshing to see that color fonts are finally available to us once again.

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  3. These fonts are awesome! They way they are named makes a lot of sense. Never knew about colored fonts before. I assume they only have specific uses.

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