Anisotropic interpolation

Hi, I’m looking to create synthetic small caps. In Fontlab, I have the option to blend fonts separately along x and y, which I would use to interpolate synthetic condensed and small caps in order to be able to scale correctly. In Glyphs, I seem to be able to only find options to interpolate proportionally along my defined weight axis. Am I missing some option? Digging through the forum archives, I found a post from 2013 in which @TimAhrens mentioned blending between background and front layer, but that option doesn’t seem to be at the same spot anymore, or I misunderstood something. Any tips are appreciated! Thank you!

I suggest you have a look at the Remix Tools. The Scaler, Tuner and Monospacer do practically what you describe, but as a one-stop-shop, with some additional capabilities. My original article describes some of the maths inside it.

The RMX Tuner allows to blend in an additional layer if there are any (to be precise, any that are compatible and not identical to the current layer). I found this makes more sense than blending in the background.

Also, the RMX Scaler allows to “blend in” alternate glyphs, so you may want to create .long glyphs with (I recommend exaggerated) longer serifs, which you then blend in while creating the small caps from the regular uppercase.

Thank you very much! Odd that splitting the blend function into two axes doesn’t appear to be possible natively, despite Fontlab Studio 5 (among others) being able to do so. I’ll copy/paste back and forth from Fontlab in that case, although I really appreciate you recommending the Remix Tools. One day soon I will run out of excuses to not have them …

I have never needed it as the Remix Tools implement it so perfectly. You can define anisotropic interpolation for instances with the InterpolationWeightY parameter.

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Remix tools are great but I explained my students today how to make synthetic derivatives “by hand” in order to understand the math and to think about desired stroke weights etc. and how to get there. With the advantage that it already worked in FontStudio from 1991 and any sane font app thereafter.
I think you would have found that InterpolationWeightY parameter yourself Sebastian :wink: These parameters are like a treasure trove, and much easier to handle than one might think at first.

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Personally, I have had very little to do with custom parameters so far and am only gradually grasping the entirety of that said treasure trove. The possibility simply hadn’t occured to me, thanks for pointing it out. Nonetheless, integrating this form of transformation into an editing workflow would seem rather more desirable than digging around in custom parameters to export separate instances by trial and error. I’ll try that way, though, thank you!

And thank you for showing us how to run Glyphs on affordable Windows PCs and helping out with practical Glyphs questions at school :slight_smile:
Actually Jens told me that the separate Y-interpolation is in custom parameters of instances, and then it took just seconds to find and apply it.
As for workflow, I did ask for synthetic glyphs in the font and ideally even in the font format some time ago, but it is not yet there.
For example, when you have Light and Bold and they interpolate well, and you want to add a complete set of superior letters for the Regular weight only, these could be permanently synthetic, with a recipe of X and Y interpolation, X and X scale, Y shift, and LSB and RSB increase numbers.