The long, incredibly tortuous, and fascinating process of creating a Chinese font

Nikhil Sonnad for QZ:

The most fundamental unit of a character is the “stroke.” Think of a stroke as a single motion during which the writer does not lift her writing implement. The character for “two” is 二 and, intuitively, contains exactly two strokes. A more complicated character is 灣, the wan in Taiwan, which is made up of 25 strokes.

These strokes come together to form the 214 “radicals” of Chinese. These are usually components contained within larger characters, and each has its own meaning, like “water” (氵) or “fur” (毛) or “speech” (言). A character is usually one or more radicals—which give it meaning—along with other parts that suggests how it should be pronounced. You might notice that the wan (灣) character mentioned above contains the “water” radical on its left side; that’s because this character means “bay,” which is a very watery thing.

I rarely read long articles on the internet, but I read this one line by line.