What's wrong with Copperplate?!

umlautthoni's picture


Personally, I have always enjoyed Copperplate. Am I so wrong? So misguided?

Joe Pemberton's picture

I like that thread a lot. It sums up an overly used typeface really nicely. It's a good example of a typeface with a lot of heritage that shouldn't be thrown around. It takes a delicate hand (restraint!) to use.

Anybody know who did the Copperplate refresh for Rembrandt? http://littlefury.com/_1b.html

brampitoyo's picture

Says it right in the site. It was Mother NY, a branch of the London office.

Joe Pemberton's picture

Pasting my comment from Speak Up:

"...Copperplate was designed for letterpress (as all the type of it's time was, obviously). But, it was specifically designed to feel like a sans serif, yet hold it's crispness at small sizes. This is the reason there was no lowercase... The metal simply would not have held the small shapes. This explains it's very wide with very fine serifs.

"It does what it was designed to do very well. It was never intended to be a display face. (Same with Bank Gothic and Bell Gothic!) Fred Goudy must roll over in his pantheonic grave when Copperplate ships on hard drives everywhere.

"With this context I actually think it's a bit of genius. Makes me want to take a second look at the Goudy stuff I usually pass over.

satya's picture

Copperplate Gothic is one of those famous faces i dont like.

Quincunx's picture

I don't really like it either. (Nor do I like Speak Up, it looks good, but I can never figure out where I am on that site. It needs breadcrumbs or something like that.)

brampitoyo's picture

My problem with SpeakUp is more than just navigational. Yes, I highly enjoy their brutal critiques of everything design, but sometimes they are rife with inconsiderate anarchism and lack of appreciation for the past (which are not present in this article, by the way.)

However, they are a good reading if the client just rejected your third comp and you want to get back at the world in a witty, intelligent manner ;-)

Paul Cutler's picture

Nothing is wrong (or right) with Copperplate. It merely exists.


dcastillo's picture

Was out and about and noticed some new Copperplate use by a new Ralph Lauren division. I'm not too much of a Copperplate fan (there are just some characters I just cannot get with), but I think they did good with this one. Always nice to see it in 3D:

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