Chinese and Japanese composition

The rules of typography vary from one language to another. For Chinese or Japanese, the composition may not always be the same as for Roman. Certainly, Chinese and Japanese are far more complex than Roman typography.

The Chinese and Japanese composition includes certain “settings” that need to be considered such as Mojikumi (illustrated on the right), Kinsoku, Bunri-kinshi, Rensuuji, Kinsoku hanging, Tsumegumi (character tracking), Grid Jidori, Warichu, Tate-chu-yoko (also known as kumimoji or renmoji), Ruby, Kenten, Aki, Shatai, ICF alignment…etc.

Apart from the “settings” there are other concerns, for example choosing an appropriate Chinese or Japanese typeface and the manner in which the type is calculated and laid out. This is where my expertise can help.

I care about your work

I can provide a trial sample of your typesetting/DTP work, upon request. Contact me on david@dtsai.uk.


The DTP software that supports CJK language has a preset mojikumi function built in. InDesign has an option to change the desired values for the character spacing and create a new custom mojikumi set, as illustrated below.

Chinese mojikumi setting