There are lots of tips on the best way to perfectly kern a piece of type. As with all design, kerning can be subjective, but some is just plain right or wrong. One trick that stuck with me was from the esteemed Maggie Lewis who was the Head of Typography at J.Walter Thompson for many years. She was fondly nicknamed the “Queen of Type” by the industry. I had just finished college and was pounding the streets of London meeting as many agency Type Directors as I could. I was quite nervous about meeting Maggie, but she was fantastic, gave me lots of critique without making me feel I was on a hiding to nothing and was generous with her time. She paid particular attention to the kerning on my layouts. Before the mac, headlines were usually set on a typositor and were cut up by skilled paste-up artists, even to the point where serifs might be shortened to create a better space between characters. Something that can and should be done in Adobe illustrator today.
Anyway she said the hard thing about kerning a word is that you know what it says, and so the subtleties of bad character spacing aren’t immediately apparent. She suggested turning the type upside down, that way you don’t read the word, you merely look at the shapes the characters make and the space that’s created between them. On the computer you can even flip the word as I have done above.
It was a great tip, and one I still use today.