Instructions for creating fonts with Corel Draw 7.0

The same general procedures are used in previous versions and also work in version 8. Corel Draw exports single characters to .ttf files. Thus a font is built one character at a time. If the font file doesn't already exist, it is created. Characters can also be exported to existing fonts. Here is the procedure:

  1. Get the template (it is zipped to make sure it transfers correctly; here is Stuffit Expander for Windows if you need an unzip utility). It is a 10 inch x 10 inch "page" with three guidelines. From the top, they are the highest letter, the font baseline, and the lowest descender. They are based on 720 point Arial. These will provide a basis against which to measure your new font, but you can ignore them or change them.
  2. Start Corel Draw and load the template (File|New From Template).
  3. Create a letter or character.
  4. Export the character (File|Export...); choose "Truetype font".
  5. If this is the first character of a new font, a dialog will ask for Family Name - put the name of the font here. You can leave the default values in the other boxes (style, gride size, etc.).
  6. Answer "yes" to "Save changes to font file?"
  7. Choose a character from horizontal scroll list in the next dialog. If this is the first character in a font, it will be the default for all the characters without explicit assignments (you've probably seen this in fonts where high-ANSI characters are rectangles or circles). You can't change this later on, so choose carefully. The characters in the scroll box are originally gray, but they turn black when they have an assignment.
  8. The Design Size is 720 points. Choose Auto Width unless there is a reason not to (e.g. a fixed-width font). If you change width manually, the right vertical guideline on the diagram in the dialog box will shift.
  9. Create the next letter.
  10. Assign it to a character as above in 7.
  11. Repeat until your font is done. Remember that it is a usable font file at any point after the first character is exported, so you can try it out. Whether it is installed or not seems to have no effect on exporting to it.
  12. In "Options" you can change the family name, width of the space character and of individual characters, and delete characters.
I have no connection with Corel Corporation and these instructions are based on my own experience. I like Corel Draw, and I've used it since version 2, but I wish the upgrades weren't so expensive, and I would rather not have to buy the kitchen sink just to get the latest version of Draw.
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This page Copyright © 1998 by Curtis Clark. Last revision Friday, February 20, 1998.