Bad Fonts Used Well

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Joel C. Salomon's picture
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Joined: 23 Jul 2007 - 1:10pm
Bad Fonts Used Well
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 As a follow-on to [[http://typophile.com/node/39210|this thread]], here's a challenge of my own: Can folks find examples of "bad fonts" (defined however you will) used effectively? Or beaten-to-death fonts used in new and interesting ways?
 And just to get them out of the way, I already know about [[http://bancomicsans.com/home.html|ban comic sans]] and [[http://www.iheartpapyrus.com|I ♥ Papyrus]]. I'm not looking for irony but for actual effective uses of these beasts.

—Joel

75th Trombone's picture
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Simon Daniels's picture
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Joined: 11 Apr 2002 - 6:37pm
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I've posted this one before, but what the heck...

Type Directors Club Ad from 2005

I think this one works well too.

Mike Diaz's picture
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Joined: 14 Apr 2006 - 12:43am
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If you ever have the pleasure (or displeasure) of browsing the page after page of art gallery ads in ARTFORUM magazine then I'm sure you've seen Times and Arial used there. In many instances Times is used so well I don't recognize it. I say to my self "What is that efficient scotch"? The brain kicks in: "Oh, Times". So bad its good. I guess that's makes appropriate for galleries.

http://www.artforum.com

Mikey :-)

Mike Diaz's picture
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Simon Daniels's picture
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I'd also add the use of CS in SouthPark as a high-point too.

David Rault's picture
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Joined: 12 Jun 2007 - 3:44am
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Even the most skilled of every designers in the whole known universe could ever, ever make comic sans look good.

dr

Luke's picture
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Joined: 24 Aug 2003 - 3:21pm
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creative review organised a clever little idea where they invited several designers to do posters using only comic sans. I have to say most of the poster were attractive in themselves.

Arun's picture
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Joined: 6 May 2007 - 11:40pm
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"I have to say most of the poster were attractive in themselves..."

By any chance, have a link to where it can be seen?

Listening to Comic Sans being beaten up so much you sometimes begin to feel sorry. On one of those ocassions I had thought of running a competition like that to redeem it!

Simon Daniels's picture
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Joined: 11 Apr 2002 - 6:37pm
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>Even the most skilled of every designers in the whole known universe could ever, ever make comic sans look good.

Wah, wah, wah! Doctor, the haters thread is over here... http://typophile.com/node/39210

David Rault's picture
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Joined: 12 Jun 2007 - 3:44am
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Simon, are you a close friend of vince connare? i mean, do you always have to come barking at me when I say comic sans is not nice? how come you dont answer to anyone else saying the same thing but just me? are you turning obsessive? well if that can make your day more exciting, feel free, i really don't mind. you're welcome. be my guest.

dux: I have this copy of creative review somewhere, but in my humble and personal opinion, the posters are really bad.

I really feel that I actually can't have any productive discussion with graphic designers who actually think that comic sans is nice, or can be nicely used. It's just another useless waste of time.

dr

Arun's picture
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Joined: 6 May 2007 - 11:40pm
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I don't know the background David, but I think the whole tone of the thread is just part-serious.

Of course very few professional graphic designers consider using Comic Sans in real life.

I feel Comic Sans exists primarily to make us graphic designers feel good about our presumed better taste ;)

David Rault's picture
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Joined: 12 Jun 2007 - 3:44am
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"I feel Comic Sans exists primarily to make us graphic designers feel good about our presumed better taste ;)"

hahahaha that is a really nice quote, I'll use it again (with your permission)

dr

Dan Reynolds's picture
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Joined: 20 Jul 2002 - 11:00am
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Well, Vince is a good guy, and an active member of our type and typohile communities. Isn't isn't nice to bash your friends, or people who support your field.

Sii also works for Microsoft. Personally, I'm glad we have anyone from MS here on the boards at all. It is only natural for him to remind us of how Comic Sans came about, and why. Vinny's brief certainly wasn't "create a new typeface that will destroy western typography and civilization as we know it." Yet, sometime we treat it like that was exactly what some old guys in big suits around a table must have been thinking.

Someone needs to open up a reality check on the truth of the matter. Sii might be the one to do this over and over again. But only because someone else invariable feels like devoting a thread to the evils of Comic Sans every six months. or six weeks ;-)

David Rault's picture
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Joined: 12 Jun 2007 - 3:44am
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Dan:

I know the story, Vince made comic sans almost as a private joke in a couple of hours, and it made its way onto windows, and blablabla. I dont blame him for that. I blame the world and MS, let's say. but, I dont like the way Vince defends himself, "everyone talks about my type so it's the best in the world", "i dare you, i double dare you"... reminds me of samuel jackson in pulp fiction. i mean, we are getting close to ridiculous on this one.

I dont see, in Vince's comments, anything which support our field. telling every typographer here that comic sans is superior to everything they might create because people will talk about it for centuries is quite an insult, according to me- "quantity wins over quality". and that's exactly what he said, in another topic - by the way, i'm answering posts here, but i know it is not really the right thread to do so: i'm sorry.

cheers,
dr

Dan Reynolds's picture
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Joined: 20 Jul 2002 - 11:00am
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I recommend travelling to a type conference or some other typographic event where you could meet Vincent in person. Then you might realize what a benefit to our community he is. We all get pissed off sometimes in these impersonal forums. I certainly have! People still seem willing to talk to me anyway!

I know I'd start opening up a lot of cans of whoop-ass left and right though if I had designed Comic Sans and had to read comments like the ones on this thread every other time I came to a typography forum :(

David Rault's picture
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Dan, you are very right, reality will always be better to experience than forums, where harsh comments are easy to throw. I'll be more gentle in the future.

dr

Ricardo Cordoba's picture
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Joined: 6 Jun 2005 - 6:57pm
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I recommend travelling to a type conference or some other typographic event where you could meet Vincent in person.

Or Si, for that matter. :-)

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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I used Comic Sans many times as a way of putting printing specs on artwork. It is casual and gives the feel of a written note but is much easier to read than my writing! I used it to indicate Pantone color specs, creep bleeds, or varnish KOs. It separated itself from the text of the piece enough to be clear that it was not part of the printed piece. The beauty is that everyone on earth has it so you know it will show up. It has its uses for others but can also be abused by those who wouldn't be able to do a decent job with any type either. It has been bashed so many times that you wonder why some people just can't let it go. Of course I bash Bush all the time without mercy so maybe I am just as guilty so I will shut up before I start in on him again.

ChrisL

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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I have never met Vince in person but I have met Si a couple of times. He is a terrific guy and a good sport with the greatest sense of humor. He would do anything to help out a friend. He is also a loving father, which counts a lot in my book.

ChrisL

David Rault's picture
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Chris, that was so much off topic.

dr

Dan Reynolds's picture
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Joined: 20 Jul 2002 - 11:00am
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Really? I found it spot on :(

William Berkson's picture
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Joined: 26 Feb 2003 - 11:00am
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Here's another example of comic sans well used.

Here the sign is for classes for children, and the "ductus" of comic sans exactly matches the ductus of the ancient "seal script" style of Chinese characters on each side of the Roman.

Arun's picture
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What is ductus?

Eben Sorkin's picture
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Joined: 22 Jan 2004 - 4:19pm
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Bill's right. They both have a similar faux primitive feeling. Nice one!

Eben Sorkin's picture
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Joined: 22 Jan 2004 - 4:19pm
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RE: Ductus

Try this or do a site search on google of typophile with the term.

http://typophile.com/node/13877?

Arun's picture
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I should have thought of that.

Thanks.

Simon Heptonstall's picture
Joined: 14 Mar 2007 - 3:43am
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I've always loved Armin Hofmann's use of Comic Sans on his famous "Giselle" poster.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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LOL!

ChrisL

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Simon,
Did you make the adaptation yourself or find it online? That is a scream :-)

ChrisL

Simon Heptonstall's picture
Joined: 14 Mar 2007 - 3:43am
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Cheers Chris, It was either that or redoing a Josef Müller-Brockmann 'Musica Viva' Poster in Papyrus (not quite as funny).

Thomas Binder's picture
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@sihep
GREAT, haha!

Vincent Connare's picture
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Joined: 6 May 2005 - 4:33am
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nice use of Belwe

Luke's picture
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BjornH's picture
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Joined: 12 Nov 2007 - 11:38am
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Comic sans, I allways looked at it as something liquid floating on top of the paper like this:

Jan Erdmann's picture
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Joined: 6 Mar 2007 - 8:36am
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> nice use of Belwe

Is Belwe such a bad font?

paul dean's picture
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Joined: 14 Nov 2007 - 7:03pm
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I always thought Papyrus looked pretty good on Milton Glaser’s Dylan poster. (Thank you Si for the inspiration. . . .)

Wesley Marc Bancroft's picture
Joined: 20 Apr 2007 - 8:37pm
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I laughed out loud when I saw that perverse travesty of Hofmann's Giselle poster.

Classic.

Fredrik Andersson's picture
Joined: 10 May 2005 - 11:13am
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dr: I really feel that I actually can’t have any productive discussion with graphic designers who actually think that comic sans is nice, or can be nicely used. It’s just another useless waste of time.
May I, with your permission, quote You on that one? And use a funny voice while doing it?

David Rault's picture
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fredo:

Be my guest.

dr

Simon 'Sye' Robertson's picture
Joined: 21 Jul 2005 - 12:42pm
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@BjornH - i've never thought of inky comic sans, i like that! it does make it more appealing to me!

Shawn Sepehry's picture
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I didn't catch on with the 'Giselle' poster but the 'Dylan' poster raised eyebrows.
This would be an interesting experiment to to see how 'perversely' we can destroy other classic posters using comic sans or other hated typefaces.

Open invitation.

Mike Diaz's picture
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Joined: 14 Apr 2006 - 12:43am
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I love that last one!!!!