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Pique font specimen
Pique font specimen
Pique font specimen
Pique font specimen

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Pique: A fast moving brush script

Some type designers swear by fleshing out ideas on paper before putting beziers to screen. Others ditch the analog altogether and embrace the computer’s infinite undo to turn their ideas into reality. Pique, on the other hand, takes a hybrid approach and combines marks on paper with the seemingly endless possibilities of the digital realm. The result is a script with a crisp energy and buoyancy that only the collaboration of paper and screen can lay claim to.

Pique, marker first design.

Plenty of marker pads were filled up with the raw material of what would become Pique. However, it’s not quite Pique until the shapes are reinterpreted and regularized in a font editor. Here, the uppercase O begins to take shape.

Without a doubt, Pique’s character is rooted in the brush marker. Its staccato clip and slicing rhythm come from the fast movement of marker on paper. The down strokes are emphasized, giving it a punch on the page while making way for some of its more idiosyncratic characters like the lowercase o, e or &.

Pique o, e, &

A little creativity was required in designing these characters since their natural shapes were at odds with the primarily downward strokes that make up Pique.

To keep the typeface from reveling in nostalgia or completely disintegrating into a mess of unrelated shapes, the brush was our trusty guide rather than absolute dictator. Details were gently stripped, corners sharpened, and shapes regularized or re-imagined. The exuberance and familiarity we love about brush scripts remains intact but a contemporary aesthetic finds its way into the mix.

Pique Small Caps

Pique features an extended Latin character set along with small caps, small cap numerals and related punctuation. Stark capitals were initially designed to work in all-cap settings but the results left us cold when set with the lowercase. Instead, small caps were created for all-cap settings allowing the uppercase the freedom to be as swashy as it liked. Although designed to integrate with the entire typeface, the small caps are a distinct design all their own and provide welcome typographic contrast. As such, they’re included as a separate font file for webfont use.

Designer: Nicole Dotin
Released: 2014
Weights & Styles
Language Coverage
Extended Latin
Format Options
PDF: Pique
Webfonts: Pique
Desktop License Agreement
Webfont License Agreement
Trial Fonts
Test and rent Pique with Fontstand, a Mac app.
Semi script

Sure, it’s a script typeface but not every letter connects. Certain letters — like the o, e or r — don’t have final, joining strokes.