John L. Renshaw (Spartan)

Options
Hey everyone.

I'm searching for a picture of John L. Renshaw, the designer of Spartan.
A student is making a type catalogue containing 10 typefaces with the designers profile and picture but we can't find any of John.

Thank you! 

Comments

  • Thomas Phinney
    Options
    I found his obituary which has a photo. Sorry he looks so dour!



  • André G. Isaak
    Options
    I found his obituary which has a photo. Sorry he looks so dour!
    "Spartan" might be a better word than "Dour".
  • Fernando Díaz
    Options
    Thank you Thomas!

    Glad to finally see his face.
  • Nick Shinn
    Nick Shinn Posts: 2,152
    Options
    Paul Renner designed Spartan, which was a knock-off of Futura.
  • Thomas Phinney
    Options
    Renner designed Futura (or at least the initial design which was then tamed by Bauer typecutters). I thought Renshaw did Spartan. It is certainly derivative of Futura, so there is every reason to credit Renner as well, and maybe even first.
  • Fernando Díaz
    Options
    Paul Renner designed Spartan, which was a knock-off of Futura.
    Perhaps that order came directly from ATF (or Linotype). He made an interpretation and so I don't think that diminishes his work as a type designer. Follwoing the same reasoning you can say that Helvetica was a "knock-off" of Akzidenz Grotesk :smile:
  • Nick Shinn
    Nick Shinn Posts: 2,152
    Options
    Fonts. com: “The Spartan font family was released by American Type Founders around 1936 as an American copy of Futura.”

    A copy is not an interpretation.
    Props to W.A. Dwiggins and Linotype for designing an original American sans, Metro.

    @Fernando Diaz:
    you can say that Helvetica was a "knock-off" of Akzidenz Grotesk 

    Yes, I have in fact said that, and demonstrated it quite conclusively IMHO—but that’s another story.
  • Nick Shinn
    Nick Shinn Posts: 2,152
    edited December 2021
    Options
    Good point, John.
    I like the “after”, and will add that to my own revivals of other designers’ work.

    Because the present convention is to list the redesigner(s) and the original, as if they are co-designers.
  • Fernando Díaz
    Options
    Nice point @Florian Hardwig!

    And thanks to everyone for the insightful information! 

    Hope you all have a wonderful end of the year <3
  • John Savard
    John Savard Posts: 1,094
    edited December 2021
    Options
    I see that I don't know who to blame for Intertype's Vogue either. That typeface, although also created to rival Futura, is not entirely a copy; it is easily distinguishable from Futura.
    Personally, I disliked Vogue, finding it unattractive. I'm most familiar with it from the pages of CRACKED magazine.
    I would definitely say that however much Paul Renner may deserve the credit for anything good about Spartan, however close an imitation of Futura Spartan may be, the statement "Paul Renner designed Spartan", if it appeared without context and without qualifications, would be highly misleading. But this thread provides context - and through it we discovered that saying that John L. Renshaw designed Spartan is just as misleading... and for the same reason; neither Renshaw nor Renner worked for Linotype.
    The Wikipedia entry on Spartan listed John L. Renshaw as its designer. I've made a correction; Wikipedia got this from Fonts in Use which was its reference.