How to Access Glyphs in Photoshop

How-to Access Hidden Font Features via Besotted

Did you know that there are secret extra characters built into many of the fonts we feature here? You can find everything from ligatures, to alternate characters, to fun ornaments – whatever the font designer felt necessary. These characters are collectively called glyphs, and they are not only fun to use, but they are the key to making a hand lettered or calligraphic font look realistic!

If you are a graphic designer, and glyphs are old hat, you may not know that the latest version of Photoshop (finally) has a glyphs panel! That’s right, you don’t have to open Illustrator, and your command C / command V fingers can take a well-deserved break if you are designing something for web.

View the tutorial after the jump! 

So what do you think? Now that you know the secret, will you give glyphs a whirl?


Here’s the lovely font I used for the demonstration.

Some of our favorite fonts that offer special characters (AKA glyphs):

Beautiful (and popular) casual script font (includes 349 glyphs!)

Hand Lettered Serif (279 glyphs included)

Realistic Handwriting Font (529 glyphs included)

Hand Lettered Display Type  – comes with glyphs, but check out this ornament set the designer created!

Powerhouse font family with script, sans serif, and serif fonts that play nicely together. There are multiple options for building out your glyph collection here, but our favorite is the Catchwords collection.

This elegant wedding font has so many flourishes your head will spin

Author / Miss Michelle P.

Miss Michelle P. is a photographer, and the co-creator of Foto Rx Premium Photoshop Actions. She lives in the Pacific Northwest. Her muse is light.


4 thoughts on “How to Access Glyphs in Photoshop

  1. Really appreciate your sharing these little tutorials. Have been using PS for photo editing, so this is new territory for me. Now I can go back to discover all the extras that I was not using…..thank-you!

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