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Joshua Belyeu

Rebuilding Font Collection Legally?

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Joshua Belyeu

Hey, all.

I had a collection of around 2,000 fonts, most of which I know were not paid for. So, I erased the bulk of them this morning from my computer. This now presents a problem: how to rebuild my collection the right way without spending a load of money that would sink the Titanic. Any suggestions?

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Kevin Thompson

Many foundry sites offer free typefaces (either individual weights of larger families or type families as a whole).

MyFonts.com and Fontshop.com are the two biggest I know of, but lots of smaller foundries do the same (check out an international list at Type Foundries Archive). Hanken Design and Blambot are just two smaller foundries where I have found interesting free single weights or complete typefaces. Fontdiner is another good source.

Many other sites, once you sign up for their e-newsletters, will offer links to free type and design resources (Fontbundles, Dealjumbo, etc.). The typefaces aren’t always of the highest quality, but occasionally you can find gems among the rocks.

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Ralf Herrmann

What kind of fonts did you use? 

Getting entire libraries isn’t really a thing anymore. The font market has gotten way too busy for that. Fonts are usually “on-demand products” now. A while ago MyFonts/Monotype had a subscription package to use many of the “classics” but they just stopped that at the end of last year. An Adobe subscriptions gets you a lot of fonts, but those are more contemporary fonts. 

A typical suggestion for beginners was always to get an older CorelDraw package, which contains the Bitstream font library. It contains a lot of classics, even though they have different names. 

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Joshua Belyeu

There wasn't any specific method to my madness; I used whatever I needed at the time and kept it. My main use of Photoshop is doing DVD covers as a hobby, so I collected a large variety of fonts based on film and television. I also used fan-created studio templates as a starting point, so that would include fonts like the Univers line for Universal Pictures as an example. To put it simply, I really want to do this the right way now, and I'm sick of feeling guilty every time I come across a supposedly "free" font that I know MyFonts will charge at least $35 for. Also, I don't have the money to spend thousands of dollars at once, correctly replacing all the ones I erased.

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Greg Yerbury

Well as Ralf said CorelDraw does  contain a number of versions of popular fonts and even has some of the Star trek fonts.
Another source of modern fonts but is a design cuts package.
 

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pereelmagne

Hi, Joshua,

You've been given good advice. I will only remind you about some free typefaces with a large repertoire of glyphs. 

- Linux Libertine: http://libertine-fonts.org/

- Ubuntu: https://design.ubuntu.com/

- DejaVu: https://dejavu-fonts.github.io/

- Source (Adobe): https://github.com/adobe-fonts

- Vollkorn: http://vollkorn-typeface.com/ 

I actually really like Source Serif.

 

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Greg Yerbury

Cassady and Greene fonts might be usable for small private projects as they come in a lot of different styles but they are limited in other ways.

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Riccardo Sartori

My advice would be to not attempt to rebuild an entire collection at once. Look for what you need and purchase just the styles that are essential at the moment: most foundries will still apply a discount if you decide to upgrade to the entire family later on.

Most foundries and retailers periodically (and controversially) offer huge discounts on styles or families (both new or from their back catalogues). There are websites and Twitter accounts that gather and list such deals (example).

As for free fonts, often you get what you payed for, but, as other noted, lately there have been significant improvements. Plus, almost all the overused classics have now at least one open source version. In any case, I would start perusing the recommendations on this very site

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