January 18, 2020 81

How to Buy Fonts

How to Buy Fonts

– Hey guys! I’ve gotten a lot of
questions about fonts lately. So today, we’re gonna go
through where to get them, how to buy them, how to organize them, and all of that super fun, fun, fun stuff. So what websites are even out there? For free fonts, dafont.com is probably one of the most comprehensive. I’ve been using dafont
since probably, like, 2005, and I still use a lot of the fonts that I’ve downloaded from there. However, even though all of
the fonts are free to download, it does not mean that they’re
all free for commercial use. If you’re just using the
fonts for personal use, or school work, then go
ahead, use whatever you find. But, if you’re using
it for commercial use, look at the top right
above the download button and stick with fonts that say either Free or Public domain. Or get in touch with
the designer of the font to get permission to use
it for commercial use. You also have to be careful
with free font sites because generally the quality of the fonts aren’t as good as the
ones that you pay for. Just like everything in life, go figure. Sometimes the glyphs are beautiful, but all of the kerning is really off. Or sometimes you won’t
have alternate glyphs that you could really use
for a handwritten font. It’s kind of hit and miss, but there are definitely
some good ones on there. Okay, so let’s say you’re
ready to take the next step and actually buy a font. FontShop is great, but I
actually like the design of MyFonts a lot better. They have a huge library
of all kinds of fonts, and they’re always adding new ones and having really good sales. A little trick. If you’re a student or
if you’re really cheap and only want free fonts, you can actually search by price. Go into Advanced Search, and set the fields to say
price is at most zero. Generally, you can get a
single weight of the font or the ornaments set for free with the expectation that you’ll come back and buy the whole family
if you like it enough. Another thing you can do, if you’re not sure if the font
will work for your project, is to enlarge the preview, take a screen shot and
paste it into Photoshop. Use the magic wand to
get rid of the background and put a color overlay on it to see if that’s really the font that you want to use for this project. I am not advocating doing this
instead of buying the font. But, if you just want to check if it’s right for this project before you spend all that money, then, you know, it works. Another site whose fonts
you’re probably seeing all over the place these days is the Lost Type Co-op. They don’t have a huge library, but what makes them unique is their pay what you want model. They are no minimum or
maximum amounts to pay. You just pay what you think
the font is worth to you, and the site doesn’t take
any cut of the money, so everything that you pay,
goes straight to the designers. Okay, so you’ve bought a font. You downloaded it to your computer. What did you actually get
and what do you do with it? Well, generally, you’ll get either a .ttf or a .otf file. TTF stands for TrueType, and OTF stands for OpenType. If you’re really interested, you can read all about it on Wikipedia, what the differences are, but for now, just know that those are
the two standard font files. In your download folder, you’ll also probably get a text document that explains what your
license is to use the font. If you’re using the
font for anything other than just personal use, it’s a good idea to just
take a look over that to make sure there isn’t
anything crazy in there that you weren’t expecting. So, okay, now comes the fun part. Font management. If you’re using a Mac, your computer comes with a program called Font Book, which is fine, but as you start building your library, you’re probably gonna want
something a little more powerful. Dafont.com has a great compilation of a ton of font management programs for both Mac and PC, but the one that I use is called FontExplorer X Pro. It’s distributed by Linotype and it costs $80. This software is really great because you can activate
and deactivate fonts with one click. To add a font to you library, it’s literally as simple as just clicking a font file and
dragging it into the library and then clicking the
check box to activate it. The other really cool thing is that you can separate
your fonts into groups. I have mine sorted into Calligraphy, Decorative, Dingbats, Foreign, Modern, Sans Serif, Script, Serif, and Slab Serif. That way if I know that I need
a Script font for a project, I only have to browse
through 117 font families instead of my entire collection of 992. It is a bit of work at the beginning sorting all of your existing
fonts into these categories. I think I probably spent about a few hours each day for two days
doing it at the beginning, but as you keep adding fonts, you can maintain it by just
sorting them in the right place, and it saves you so much
time in the long run. And finally, I just want
to bring up something that has been a mystery to me for ages. And that is why is there no
glyphs palette in Photoshop? If you go into Illustrator or InDesign, you can open up a glyphs palette which shows every single
character in a typeface, even the less common ones that you can’t just type on your keyboard, and you insert them by just
double-clicking on the glyph. But in Photoshop, this panel
is nowhere to be found. So, if you want to use
a lesser known glyph, the best work around I’ve found is to just type it in Illustrator, and then copy and paste, but that seems really convoluted, and really unnecessary to
have to use two programs to do something so simple. So, I don’t know, if you
guys know the answer, let me know. So anyway, I hope this
was useful to you guys. I’ll have links down below to everything that I talked about, but let me know in the comments below if you guys have any questions. Also, if you want to check out some of my favorite fonts of all time, you can head on over to my Subblime page. I just put up a list showing them all in one lovely page, and we’re also doing a giveaway of a (beep) So, if you want to head on over there you can enter that with just one click. So, if you liked this video, you might also like my previous video, which is the history of the
best punctuation mark ever, the interrobang. You can watch that right here, or if you’ve had your
fill of fonts for now, and you want to hear
all about my recent trip to Maker Faire, you can check that out right here. Thank you all so much for watching. I will see you all next time. (techno music) I’m sorry if I was a little hoarse here. (coughs) I was like coughing
between every single take because I have a really bad sore throat, but I overcame that so that I could talk about fonts with all of you. I just, I love you guys so much. Thank you for watching. I’m gonna go drink some tea.

81 Replies to “How to Buy Fonts”

  • Tamar McMahon says:

    I don't even want to do it but SECOND!

  • PerpetualMotion says:

    Wow! I've never been this early! Awesome!

  • Shaena Harasty says:

    this helps so much 🙂 :). i really needed this

  • Jonny Eveson says:

    The League Of Movable Type is a brilliant free font website, not sure if you've used any of them before. Like with LostType, not many to choose from, but all a good quality 🙂 Great video! Love all your Type ones.

  • Whitney Sews says:

    Very interesting! Thanks for all the info! I'm going to be making a new youTube banner soon and need to find a font I like for it 🙂

  • William Marler says:

    Veer has a great video on their channel about OpenType fonts. 🙂

  • Ciccarello says:

    If your using windows and don't want to use one of the programs just drop your fonts in

  • Connor Clary says:

    That bleep at the end scared me to death.

  • Jack Oliver says:

    wh.. why was the poster giveaway bleeped?

  • Karen Kavett DIY says:

    I'm sorry, originally we were going to give away something else, but that didn't work out so we had to change it after I already filmed this.

  • Alec Dollar says:

    Nice job.

  • Jack Oliver says:

    No worries, it's been less than 20 minutes and I've already downloaded over 20 fonts, you've sent me on a download-frenzy! 🙂

  • Ben Grieve says:

    Thanks for the video! I think I've watched all of your typography videos and I really can't get enough. Now if only I had all the money in the world to buy fonts…

  • Ben Grieve says:

    Oh, and what free fonts do you recommend? I use Open Sans, Sans Serif, Lato, and Cabin a lot.

  • memyselfiamweird says:

    Why the bleep? But this is very useful, thanks Karen :3

  • imabearRAWRR says:

    I'm not sure why Indesign has the glyph palette and not Photoshop but my design professor always tells us to use photoshop for just images and use indesign for type. I guess type is easier to be dealt with in indesign but thats kind of silly that photoshop doesn't have it

  • Bappy Hashem says:

    Don't really know if you use a Windows PC as well, but for special characters, you can use Character Map under All Programs. Tiny little one, very handy application.

  • a girl watching vidoes says:

    How do you keep track of the license information after downloading tons of fonts?

  • Jaylen Fast says:

    perhaps that app she uses can have a separate section for license documents. Others just make a folder on you computer and drag them all in with the fonts name

  • TheKayDrew says:

    What do you think of Corel Paint Shop Pro XI for digital editing?

  • LeisureReader says:

    "giveaway of a BLEEEP" haha

  • Quixotic1018 says:

    So you're giving away something vulgar? I kid, I kid.

  • Brian Rodriguez says:

    Organic Lemon Echinacea Throat Coat tea is the best! Get better soon.

  • Rwededyet says:

    I was thinking about your cross-country trip and was wondering if you knew of Nerdish By Nature? They are a German girl and a Dutch boy living in Columbus Ohio who are trying to organize a trip down Route 66. It could be a good cross-country collaboration as well as making your trip safer and less expensive. They are Doctor Who fans and love thrift shops and crafting too.

  • Max Brown says:

    I love how enthusiastic you are about fonts.

  • GracefullyPantsless says:

    Fonts are so interesting, but so intimidating.

  • Ibrahim Sha says:

    i want more vids about logos fonts and design

  • Geschmack says:

    FontShop has student and ONG discounts.

  • Thatssojodi says:

    That ending i love you

  • KidHaru says:

    Why are you always sick, Karen?! haha

  • OnTheNerdySide says:

    Karen, thank you for answering my question from Tumblr about font management. I've selected a program not on dafont to try out for my Windows computer. It's called NexusFont and it comes highly recommended by CNet and looks & feels very similar to FontExplorer X Pro except it's completely free. At this point in my life, I can't see spending $80 for a font management tool, especially when something like this should be built into the Adobe suite.

  • justinlately says:

    Don't ever use DaFont. Ever. Use font squirrel if you want free fonts. DaFont is good for mediocre fonts. I'm not trying to be rude but those fonts are not designed well, at all. Trust me, I study comm design at Syracuse University.

  • Simon Adriaensen says:

    If you have a mac and don't want to sort all your fonts out manually: FontCase does the job for you. Plus, it's a beautiful application.

  • Mason Matlock says:

    I have had issues with MyFonts in the past in relation to the weird installation executable they use…it never completes the install properly, and uninstalling took a huge amount of work. Do not recommend based on that anecdotal issue, but I'm also the only person I've heard of that's had the problem, so…yeah.

  • serenitysky2 says:

    Typography game!
    I feel anyone watching this video might enjoy this 🙂

  • psiops277 says:

    I feel your pain about photoshop not having that panel. I have found a work around tho. While it is a pane in the A** if you hold down (one key at a time for different symbols ) shift, option, (alt) or command (control) and press some different letters and other keys like "option (alt) z" will give u Ω or "option (alt) ;" will give u … so u don't have to push … three times… or "shift+option+k" will give u  hope this helps someone… 🙂

  • Juanita Hizon says:

    I love ur videos 🙂

  • TheMattieBoosh says:

    You gave away my secret! haha … I'm a font thief oops

  • Nicolas Howden says:

    Can you give some tutorials on designing tips on Photoshop? Like stripes (something that took me FOREVER to figure out) or other things‽

  • Rick Blanco says:

    Great video. Suggestion: make a video about how to create custom fonts (including softwares available and how to do the spacing)

  • Aisha AB says:

    THAAANK YOUU for this !!

  • Rachel Kate Macleod says:

    Goodness me this was helpful

  • Miles Cochran says:

    I know when I am trying to get to odd glyphs or hard to find ones you can use the MAC Character pallet to get those. In your System preferences open Keyboard and there is a check box for "Show Keyboard & Character Viewers in menu bar" which may help solve this issue in photoshop, it certainly makes finding those foreign glyphs when i am writing a lot easier at times. It also includes easy ways to get to emoji in different apps as well as the pictographs and dingbat type glyphs.

  • sarah says:

    Oh my gosh your dress is gorgeous! Where did you get it from? (sits here hopeful It's from somewhere accessible from UK)

  • Devynn Munroe says:

    I believe that's the dress she got from Belk, which is a mainly southeast US department store. But you may be able to order it online 🙂

  • NickCil says:

    thank you SO much for making this video!!!! It could NOT have come at a better time 🙂

  • savfromsopn says:

    Karen, I need your help! I have photoshop elements, which like full PS lacks a glyph option. However, once I suddenly managed to type an alternate a on a font. I haven't been able to do this since. I've tried all sorts of keyboard shortcuts. But it means that there IS a way. I've googled it, and found nothing, but surely someone out there knows how. Help me figure this out?

  • AlExAkE says:

    I like your videos 🙂 very entertaining and actually useful 😉

  • Corey Cadigan says:

    How did you make that rainbow jar?!

  • Steph Nii says:

    Talking about fonts even though you have a sore throat is always worth it 🙂 I really like your videos recently. It's so nice to find someone else who likes geeking out over fonts, colors, and ampersands! :3

  • mellystar92 says:

    There are so many fonts to choose from, but I loved learning about them!

  • Zayrha Rodriguez says:

    I love your t-shirt were did you get it??

  • Christopher Warters says:

    My corel suit comes with symbol manager, and font navigator… Adobe vs. Corel… hmm, maybe that could be a video?

  • Vimzycal says:

    You totally remind me of Laci Green from D News

  • Jordan Lopez says:

    Vsauce Font! 1:48

  • Jimmy Slaughter says:

    I've wondered about the lack of a Glyphs panel in Photoshop too! Hopefully someone from Adobe will see this video and that feature will get added to the next version.

  • Christopher Hammerschmidt says:

    Hi Karen, I'd just like to point out a detail about font files: when you said that TTF stands for TrueType and OTF stands for OpenType it's half true. Actually, TTF files can be OpenType fonts too. This is a TrueType flavored OpenType font (quadratic splines, TT hinting etc.). Bringhurst explains it in a clear way and even a brief look at Wikipedia shows that. An OTF file is a PostScript flavored OpenType (cubic splines, PS hinting etc.). That's it. Thanks for the video!

  • Majumi29 says:

    YOU ARE AMAZIIIIIING!!!!! *loving your job*

  • douma234 says:

    In the future you could probably do a voice over instead of a bleep.

  • Christopher Taylor says:

    Another way to view and add Glyphs is to go into your keyboard settings (on a mac) and check the box to "Show Keyboard & Character Viewer in menu bar" with that you can then view and insert any available Glyph.

  • The Backmasker says:

    Hi Karen, I'm not sure if anyone has commented about the glyphs but I do the following on a Mac:

    1. Activate the 'Character Viewer' menu bar by Spotlight searching 'Keyboard' System Prefs and checking the "Show Keyboard and…" box
    2. Simply learn shortcuts for most used characters! Search for a list but basically it's Option + Key. e.g. (TM) is Opt + 2.

    And for Windows I use Microsoft Word. It has a great, organised collection too!

  • Eamonn Doyle says:

    thank god, I thought it was something muuucchhh more sinister 😛

  • Sarah Croughwell Lincoln says:

    AHHH GLYPH PALETTE not in photoshop I'm glad I'm not alone in these struggles

  • Lexi B says:

    Lost Type Co-op requires a donation of $30 or higher for commercial use. It's not strictly free unless you only use it for personal projects.

  • trunksdbzful says:

    I love dafont it's 100s of fonts and highly recommend

  • SugarHighDD says:

    Hi Karen! I have a question about the font called Garamond. Just the simple (probably classic) Garamond. Some authors on CreateSpace say you have to buy it if you want to use it commercially, and others say you can use it if it comes with your Windows version or your Office 2003 or above, and it's a "technical issue" rather than a "legal" one. Do I have to buy it for a book I will self-publish? I don't have a card/Paypal yet, so I can use the free Gentium Basic for now. Thank you for your time!

  • Mini's Miniatures says:

    Hey! I REALLY hope you find this comment! I found the best website for 100% free fonts: fontsquirrel. com!!!! 🙂 i would love for you to check it out

  • Crazcompart says:

    I find that many, unless they really need a specialized one, do not, and will not buy fonts…they either go to the free sites, concoct their own either through a font rendering program, or raster or vector image components…

  • Gene Paolo Gumagay says:

    Village is also a good co-op of designers. I bought Tiempos Text and Headline by Kris Sowersby there. Really great stuff.

  • Gene Paolo Gumagay says:

    Just for the information of everyone, not all fonts areavailable in MyFonts and FontShop. Some are sold exclusively on designer's websites. Most prolific for this is Hoefler & Frere-Jones, who designed and sells Gotham, and Commercial Type, a venture between Christian Schwartz and Paul Barnes who designed and sells the Guardian Collection and Neue Haas Grotesk (a recreation of Helvetica).

  • Poamrong Rith says:

    Awesome I needed this

  • Brian Tate says:

    How have i just discovered this channel… SHE IS AWESOME!!! #NerdWin

  • Today Tamara Forever says:

    So wish I would have saw this before I purchased my first ever typeface (and ran into the problem with glyphs; such a pain!!) Great vid as always 😛

  • curlyQ7 says:

    I recently spent $80 dollars on a beautiful script font that displayed many alternate versions of letters in the family. When I opened it, I thought I had been totally ripped off — I had no idea how to get to those letter alternatives… Until you casually mentioned the glyphs panel. OHMYGOD. Seriously. Thank you.

  • Eddy Bautista says:

    You should make a video fo how to organize all your design graphics (icons, templates, etc.). That would be really helpful!

  • Newecreator says:

    This is the first year I actually bought fonts and all of them were in sale at that time. The most expensive one I bought was 45 bucks but it's better to buy it now than wait for it to be 300 bucks. Quite worth it because it was a big font family.

  • Frédérique Banicles says:

    Thanks Karen 🙂

  • Udaya krishna Upadhyaya says:

    keep up your great work you are doing. You inspire many designers from your natural expression and ideas 🙂

  • Ian Tamondong says:

    Hi, I don't know but…you try to look nerdy but you're cute. Keep it UP.

  • Eva Maria says:


  • saiful's dream says:

    so funny presentation. please be smart and find out how the audience will get your information easily

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