How Cooper Black became pop culture’s favorite font.
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There’s a typeface that has made a resurgence in the last couple of years. It’s appeared on hip hop album covers, food packaging, and advertising. Perhaps you know it from the Garfield comics, Tootsie Roll logo, or the Pet Sounds album cover by the Beach Boys. It’s called Cooper Black, and its popularity and ubiquity has never waned in the hundred years since it was first designed.
In the video above, Steven Heller and Bethany Heck tell the story of Cooper Black and deconstruct all the reasons it’s been pop culture’s favorite font for so long.
Design literacy: Understanding graphic design. Steven Heller, 2014.
The Book of Oz Cooper: an Appreciation of Oswald Bruce Cooper. Society of Typographic Arts, 1949.
Font Review Journal: https://fontreviewjournal.com/cooper/
Fonts In Use: https://fontsinuse.com/typefaces/7357/cooper-black
Letterform Archive: http://oa.letterformarchive.org/
Printing Films: http://printingfilms.com/
Museum of Printing: https://museumofprinting.org/
International Advertising and Design Database: https://magazines.iaddb.org/
Cornell University Library Hip hop collection: https://rmc.library.cornell.edu/hiphop/flyers.php
Additional sources: Getty Images / Shutterstock / Google Books
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