Sighting: Buccaneer in Starbucks
It seems our fonts have invaded the world of “corporate coffee.” Earlier this week, while picking up a coffee for my daughter at the local Starbucks I noticed that they were selling mugs labeled “Austin,” presumably in an effort to make them seem less corporate and generic and more tied in to our local culture.
Having no larger interest in coffee or its marketing, the interesting thing to me was that the font they picked for the word “Austin” was our Buccaneer font, one of the featured fonts in our Howard Pyle collection. Even more interesting was that Starbucks, which turned a profit of over $150 million last quarter, apparently as a result of radical cost-cutting measures. Sadly one of the areas where they appear to be economizing is in the graphic design department, because based on subtle hints in the appearance of the letters it’s clear that they are using the shareware version of the font released way back in about 1994 rather than springing lose $24 from their corporate profits to actually pay for the font.
When Buccaneer was first released as a shareware font on AOL it had a very poorly executed capital “A” which is stood out like a sore thumb. It was quickly replaced in every commercial release of the font, including the version shipped to those who registered the shareware with a different version of the “A” which fits in better with the rest of the characters. As is the nature of the internet, that old version is still circulating 15 years later, probably stripped of its documentation and maybe even the headers with the registration info.
Starbucks or their design minions are hardly the first people to use a font without doing due diligence and checking to make sure they had a legitimate version of the font, but it seems ironic given their enormous profits and mercenary corporate image — perhaps doubly ironic that they should be trying to endear themselves to the Austin community while exploiting the work of a member of that community.
October 12, 2009 | Filed Under Uncategorized
New Font: BigBlok
A great many years ago when working in game publishing I had a real fascination with doing titles in a strong, super-bold font called Bolt Bold. The truth is I rather overused it. In doing some research I find it on more than a dozen different game books I wrote in the early 80s, all quite collectable and out of print today.
BUY NOW TRY DEMO We have done a number of fonts based on unique, historic movie titles. The most well known and widely circulated is our Captain Kidd font, but we have another historic movie font based on an even more famous movie, our Locksley font which comes from the titles of the Adventures of [...]
It's time for something new and strange, our new and original Monstrous font. Monstrous is a titling font which offers a striking look and special features which make it truly unique. The characters are stylized and super-bold, but what really sets the font apart is that there are two complete character sets w[...]
In an article last week we explored the origins of the font used in Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained and a bit of the history of the Django genre of films. That was part of the process of the development of an original font based on the lettering used in the original Django, a process similar to what was p[...]
Langdon is our first new font of 2012. It's based on samples of hand-rendered poster lettering from the early 1900s by J. M. Bergling. It has a strong, distinctive look with demi-serifs and an art nouveau or art deco look. It's very much the kind of font which we might include in a new release of our Steampunk co[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Yancey is a new font based on a hand-lettered design by Samuel Welo in the late 1920s. It is very much in the tradition of Art Deco designs of that period and designed for decorative titles of poster design uses. Yancey includes two versions of the character set,[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Script fonts can be a real challenge to design, especially when they are designed to have interconnecting characters which require exacting kerning and character positioning. When we first developed Orphiel we did a lot of kerning work on it, but despite a g[...]
In the week leading up to St. Patrick's Day it's all about Celtic design, so our featured classic font has to be something with a Celtic theme. That being the case, there's no better choice than our bold and beautiful Padstow font. It's named after the town with the most famous festival in Cornwall and has a uniq[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview There's a peculiar style of letters that seems to only show up on some signs and letterpress posters and it caught my eye when I saw it being used in the recent poster for the National Day of the American Cowboy. It's like a western style "egyptian" font with big [...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Our Munich font was first released in 1998 and has been revised several times since then. This latest version includes substantial improvements in the outlines of the characters and a new set of simple upper case initials. Munich is based on one of the classic lettering styles used on[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Lyceum has the stylized shape and look of a font designed for the program at a lecture hall, hence the name. It is super bold but remains highly readable at fairly small sized, though the contrasts are dramatic. It features only an uppercase characters set because the st[...]
Engrossing is one of our earliest fonts, originally released in the early 1990s. It is based on one of the very first examples of printed type in a script style. The historic source design was derived from common 17th century calligraphy, simplified for conversion to type and it became the precursor of all of t[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Cosmic Dude was designed as one of the special original fonts developed for our Modern Poster Fonts package. The character forms are based on samples of hand lettering from a late 1970s rock show poster. The character set includes numbers, punctuation, uppercase letter[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Potsdam was one of our earliest font releases, first produced in 1992 based on samples of 19th century decorative German type. It was one of our first fonts designed for MacIntosh computer users and follows the naming convention for Mac fonts of that era, being named after a city. [...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Escargot is based on lettering from the cover of an early pulp novel I came across a couple of months ago. It's a strong example of a distinctive style of sign and poster lettering from the 1930, characterized by super high contrast between the weighting on the le[...]
I was watching the television show Sons of Anarchy and on looking at the logo for the show I was struck by the similarity between the lettering used for the name of the titular motorcycle gang and our Posada font. Clearly their lettering derived from that same neo-gothic southwestern tradition. The main differe[...]
Our buccaneer font is peculiarly popular for pirate themed designs, which explains why it is prominently featured on the absurdly named "ARRR BARRR" pirate inspired nutty chocolate bar with a "Scandalous Activity Kit" inside. I admired the packaging in the store but not enough to sample one of the curious confections.[more]
At the very beginning of the summer Disney released Maleficent the first in a series of films retelling the Disney versions of classic fairytales from the point of view of the villain. Maleficent is a visually stunning film combining high end CGI animation with live actors and Angelina Jolie with unbelievably accent[more]
It's been a while since we released any new art from our collection of fairytale books illustrated by Charles Folkard. So it's about time we make available this collection of his illustrations for Grimm's Fairy Tales. This mini-package includes 8 beautifully drawn and colored images from stories by the Brothers Grim[more]
Walter Crane produced a series of small pamphlets in the 1890s based on popular fairy tales, done in large format with 6 pages of illustrations and about an equal number of pages of text. They were rather like the 19th century equivalent of comic books, in the same vein as what Howard Pyle was doing across the Atlantic[more]
Citing the boring sameness of their web presentation, the management of social media giant Facebook has contacted us here at the Scriptorium to purchase two new proprietary colors and 3 new custom fonts for $1.2 billion. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg observed that now that his company has topped the $100 billion mark[more]
There are many good things about Typecon and many nice things I could say, but instead I find myself seized with a compulsion to recast Typecon like old metal type that's melted down and mold into a new font. I've got lots of experience with conferences in a number of different industries, as an attendee. a sponsor,[more]
Click any font to see a larger sample. The new second edition of our Arts & Crafts font collection features 15 fonts based on designs from the Arts & Crafts movements of the late Victorian period. They are derived from designs from several branches of the movement, and demon[more]
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