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I Should Have Honor by Khalida Brohi

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Oct 9th, 2018. Artwork published in
September 2018
    I Should Have Honor by Khalida Brohi
    Source: License: All Rights Reserved.

    Penguin Random House:

    A fearless memoir about tribal life in Pakistan—and the act of violence that inspired one ambitious young woman to pursue a life of activism and female empowerment

    The title is rendered in authentically handwritten-looking letterforms. At least some of them — including the characteristic a and the swash H — are directly modeled on a font, though: It’s Heidelberg, an early digital font made in 1989 by Bill Horton as a refinement of his MacHumaine. Released into the public domain, it was copied numerous times. Today it is probably best known under the name Alpine, which is a revision and extension made by Dieter Steffmann in 2000.

    The book design is credited to Barbara M. Bachman. It’s unclear if she’s responsible for the cover, too. [Edit: The cover was designed by Anna Kochman, using details from an illustration by Peter Lemeunnie, Modele d’indienne (gouache on paper), Musée des Beaux-Arts, Angers/Brideman Images.]


    • Heidelberg
    • Optima




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    3 Comments on “I Should Have Honor by Khalida Brohi”

    1. Here’s a side-by-side comparison that shows a little better what the designer did.

      Top: The lettering from the cover, brought onto one line.
      Middle: Resetting in the Heidelberg font (1989).
      Bottom: MacHumaine, a precursor of Heidelberg with rounder forms (for comparison only).

      The letters u, a, e, (swash) H, n, r are based on Heidelberg/Alpine, sometimes with small adjustments, see e.g. the exit stroke of a or the entry stroke of r. The capital I was probably derived from H and the h from n. All the other letters are either custom or modeled after a different source. The o is too narrow and also much more angular* (especially when compared to S), and the v looks awkward. The ink gradient is a great touch, though, and definitely helps to give the letters a common look.

      *) This might be coincidental, but Alias Text is a typeface that has such an o.

    2. Well done, Florian.

    3. Thanks. I’ve once made a private record cover for a friend using Alpine. It must be 15 years ago, but I’ll never forget that a!

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