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Klaket: The Making of the Modern Ruqah Arabic Typeface

Ruqah is a basic Arabic style that native pupils learn as their first writing. Despite that, its slanted baseline makes it underrepresented in typography, let alone in the digital realm. After his first trip to Egypt in 2016, Toshi Omagari decided to take on the challenge of creating a Ruqah typeface. Inspired by the wealth of classic film posters drawn in Ruqah, he set out to make one for himself. The result of the following five years is Klaket, a display face mechanically faithful to Ruqah but in a slightly unconventional stroke modulation and weight. During this presentation, Omagari will discuss his research and design process, as well as the technical hurdles and solutions to the slanted baselines.

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Speaker

Toshi Omagari

Typeface Designer Tabular Type Foundry/Omega Type Foundry (TTF/OTF)

Toshi Omagari is an independent typeface designer in London. He graduated from the Visual Communication Design course at Musashino Art University in Tokyo in 2008 and the MA Typeface Design program at the University of Reading in 2011. Since Omagari joined Monotype in 2012, he released a number of revivals of forgotten classics, including Metro Nova, the Berthold Wolpe Collection, and Neue Plak, while also working on custom typefaces for clients such as H&M and Sir Quentin Blake. Omagari now runs his own studio. Writing systems of his interest and specialty are not limited to Latin but include others such as Cyrillic, Greek, Arabic, Tibetan, and Mongolian. Toshi is also an avid gamer and has written “Arcade Game Typography,” a specimen book of pixelated typefaces from retro arcade games. Inspired by these old game fonts, Omagari launched Tabular Type Foundry, which releases only monospaced typefaces. His other hobbies include blades and knives, Rubik’s cube, and shrimp keeping. Toshi Omagari is an independent typeface designer in London. He graduated from the Visual Communication Design course at Musashino Art University in Tokyo in 2008 and the MA Typeface Design program at the University of Reading in 2011. Since Omagari joined Monotype in 2012, he released a number of revivals of forgotten classics, including Metro Nova, the Berthold Wolpe Collection, and Neue Plak, while also working on custom typefaces for clients such as H&M and Sir Quentin Blake. Omagari now runs his own studio. Writing systems of his interest and specialty are not limited to Latin but include others such as Cyrillic, Greek, Arabic, Tibetan, and Mongolian. Toshi is also an avid gamer and has written “Arcade Game Typography,” a specimen book of pixelated typefaces from retro arcade games. Inspired by these old game fonts, Omagari launched Tabular Type Foundry, which releases only monospaced typefaces. His other hobbies include blades and knives, Rubik’s cube, and shrimp keeping.