When I first started buying fonts, I would look at the preview images and see gorgeous fancy characters that I wanted to have in my collection. But once I bought a font and tried to find the special characters by pressing every conceivable keystroke combination, none of the characters were there, which left me dismayed and thinking that I just got ripped off. The thing is, I didn’t get ripped off. I just didn’t know what I was doing — I didn’t know that there was a way to activate those special characters in Adobe Photoshop. Years later (a couple of months ago), I accidentally clicked one of the mysterious options in the Character Menu and found a submenu that displayed all the “missing features” of my fancy OpenType fonts. One thing I realize now is that some of the fonts I’ve purchased actually came with a “read me” file which I never read. If I had, I would have seen the instructions on how to access all of these special characters.
Access the Character Menu
Window >> Character
Open Variants Menu (i.e. for Open Type)
After you click on the OpenType option, you’ll see a submenu with the available variants in bold. You can try variants individually or you can try to combine them for cool type effects. Note that that not all fonts have these variants. Have fun experimenting with your fonts!
Sample Variants for Mishka’s T Character
mishka from myfonts
futura medium (osx default font)