The lettrine package is very useful to typeset initials (or drop caps) in LaTeX. However, in order to get very nice initials, you might want to add some colors to them.
Georg Duffner, the creator of the EB Garamond open-source font, while adding initials to EB Garamond using a 16th century French Bible, had the idea of creating two fonts to typeset initials: one font for the background ornaments, and one font for the foreground letters. This way, you could color them in different colors and typeset much fancier initials.
I then worked on a LaTeX package to make use of this technique and ease the typesetting of colored initials in LaTeX. By loading the two different fonts with fontspec and superimposing them with \rlap, it is easy to superimpose the two characters:
The fine-tuning can be done by using the lettrine.cfg configuration file:
The font is far from finished. As of today, only 3 initials are ready to be used (A, G and T) and adding new initials requires a lot of work. The LaTeX package can be found on github and will be on CTAN once the alphabet is complete.
Filed under LaTeX