Problem with redundant unicode from Caps to Small Caps?

Hi everyone, bit out of my depth on this one!

I’ve created a font for a client where one of the primary uses is in AfterEffects, which to the best of my knowledge does not provide support for Stylistic Sets or access to the glyphs palette.

My issue is that the AE production folks need to typeset some names (think ‘McEVOY’) with the small caps that I’ve designed specifically for this use. Without OT features support in AE, the workaround solution is simply to copy+paste the needed small caps out of a different software. It’s a niche problem so that could work. However, because I built the font with the smcp/c2sc feature, the small caps glyphs end up sharing the same unicode number with the caps (e.g. the C and are both U+0043?) so both copy+paste or manual ALT+0043 entry just defaults to the large capital version, which doesn’t help me.

The only solution I can come up with is to duplicate the .sc class and give them custom Unicode designations, but this is both super clunky and re-delivering the font files might be troublesome given that the client is already working with them. I also hate the idea of making weird concessions in the fonts themselves as a workaround for insufficiency in a design program, but I need to solve this somehow!

Anybody dealt with a similar problem with stylistic sets sharing glyph Unicodes? Do I just need to include a second set of Small Caps?

Thanks in advance!

I would export a separate font file where the lowercase letters are mapped to the small cap glyphs:

  1. Add a new instance in Font InfoExports
  2. Add a Remove Features custom parameter with smcp as the value
  3. Add a Rename Glyphs custom parameter to switch the lowercase glyphs with the small cap glyphs:
  4. Add a Remove Glyphs parameter to remove the normal lowercase glyphs (which are now stored in the glyphs with names ending in .sc):

Here is a demo file with the setup for the letters A–C:
Demo.glyphs (4.0 KB)

Thanks Florian – I’ve seen this technique of creating separate small caps fonts done in old Type1 families (BQ Akzidenz-Grotesk comes to mind), though it introduces a new problem of using multiple fonts in a single line of text or text box, creating its own issues. But, given that these text boxes might just be a single name, your solution might work better than anything else. I’ll run it by the client and see if this solution fits into their workflow.

If it is specific for one client, I would do with the extra unicode. You don’t need to duplicate the glyphs. You can add a “Reencode Glyphs” parameter.

I was unaware this existed! This would give the same glyph two Unicode numbers without needing to have two instances of the artwork?

You can assign two, but you only need one. You assign the .sc glyphs a private use area code.
And a long time ago, Adobe added PUA codes to their small caps, too. You can find them in this file: agl-aglfn/glyphlist.txt at master · adobe-type-tools/agl-aglfn · GitHub

And there are some unicode points that are small caps but mostly used for IPA. But you could reuse them here, too.