App/Filters that made my digital signature look hand written and pretty
February 21, 2013 6:27 PM   Subscribe

I just filled out a tax form with a signature app where I "drew" my signature in the field (with a mouse) and it applied filter "smoothing" and other things to make it look like a real ink signature... It actually looked BETTER than my real hand written signature. Where can I get something like that to make my own ink looking images?

I don't know what software they were using and I cannot get back to that screen. Unfortunately it was a corporate site, so I cannot post a link.

I wrote using my mouse, but it made the long strokes (like the long straight line on my D) perfectly straight, and the loops (like the loop on my cursive lowercase "L") look gorgeous and smooth.

Also, the thickness of the ink tapered off and it made pen-press dots at those locations where I started and ended my strokes.

I think the line changed based on how quickly I drew... I think that is how it knew to make really thin loopy lines for the L and stuff, but thicker less smoothed lines for the other bits.

I'd like to get something like that as a filter I could use in gimp or inkscape or something, so I can create a path of my name, and then apply this filter to clean it up and look nice and use as my generic signature image... as well as other times I want to make something look hand written and don't want to use my ugly ass real life scrawl.

Any ideas? Thanks!
posted by DaftMythic to Technology (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I just googled "handwriting fonts," and I use them for signatures or other stuff I want to look handwritten. I just picked a font that looked the most like my writing does.

I am not sure if this works in GIMP, so I'm sharing, just in case.
posted by 4ster at 6:39 PM on February 21, 2013

Do you use a Mac? Go into Preview -> Preferences -> Signatures, hold up your signature to your Mac's built-in camera, and it'll smooth it out for you for insertion into documents.
posted by I EAT TAPAS at 6:42 PM on February 21, 2013 [3 favorites]

Gimp should have smoothing no? Or a way to delete points?
posted by dame at 6:43 PM on February 21, 2013

1 - Don't have a mac

2 - Thanks but I don't want fonts, I want to create a custom one of a kind Signature, for forms but also for other ideas. Like the super stylized sigs that people put on artwork. So I want something that is dynamic.

3 - I have never used gimp for direct image creation in this way. My knowledge of it is just for making composite images etc.

But this app that was being used for the form was just so damn easy. I've tried messing with paths and stuff before and it is not my forte. I use image programs to hack together "good enough" products and for fun.
posted by DaftMythic at 6:56 PM on February 21, 2013

If you search for digital signature software you'll find products like DocuSign - looks like the Personal version is free. I've never tried any (but I will now!).
posted by humph at 4:02 AM on February 22, 2013

It might be easier to just sign a blank piece of paper and scan in your signature, then manipulate that in GIMP/Inkscape. I'm not sure why you're looking to create a signature digitally with a mouse, then use software to make it look more like your signature, then ship it off to GIMP/Inkscape.
posted by Brian Puccio at 6:19 AM on February 22, 2013

Because I have done that before and my signature looks awful... because I am a lefty and I use a mouse more than I use a pen.
posted by DaftMythic at 8:21 AM on February 22, 2013

DocuSign was a good try, but their "draw" option does not have the filters I was looking for. [EDIT] actually, has no filters, it is just straight draw.
posted by DaftMythic at 8:39 AM on February 22, 2013

I don't know, "looks awful" sounds like a feature for a signature, not a bug... Signatures are supposed to be unique and distinctive rather than pretty.

Otherwise, I suppose you could use a vector drawing package (Illustrator, GIMP, Omnigraffle, etc.) to sketch out a signature equivalent, and use spline smoothing on each line?
posted by RedOrGreen at 11:54 AM on February 22, 2013

There is an iOS app called SignEasy that my realtor used. It looks like the premium version has the capability to export. I don't know for sure that it smooths the signature out, though the signatures on the documents looked nice to me.
posted by theuninvitedguest at 9:08 AM on February 23, 2013

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