Orphan Linked

The design of Orphan Linked

1. String art image by Personal Creations

Using OpenType font technology to make an idea work.

This type proved an interesting commission. Creative agency Nitrogen developed a brand and campaign for the charity Orphan Europe. Inspired by string art, the design uses a thread wrapped around pins to make images and letters. Based on the letter shapes of Erik Spiekermann’s typeface Unit, the agency mimicked this look to produce headlines [fig 2].


2. Initial lettering developed by Nitrogen


3. In our font there are four versions of each character — the first has no join whereas the other three each have a different join allowing connections to a variety of shapes.

Orphan Europe needed a working font for their use, so we took these initial ideas and made them appear more fuzzy and hairy to better replicate a thread. Then programmed the font to link together when typed, so giving the impression of a continuous thread being used [fig 3].


Typeface details

Orphan Linked is a single font with 526 glyphs

Completed 2013