Paragraph 1: Information about the designer
The Rockwell typeface in the incarnation we know today was produced in 1934 by the Monotype Machine Corporation under the hand of Frank Hinman Pierport, a veteran type designer of the period. The Monotype Machine Corporation was founded by Tolbert Lanston in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1887. It remains a prominent type foundry to this day, being the home of such fonts as Times New Roman, Arial and Grill Sans. Their font library, developed over the past 100 years is renowned for its strength and depth in book printing and newspaper publishing.
Paragraph 2: Information about the typeface
Rockwell is a slab-serif typeface. Its geometric design, with perfectly round circular letter-forms and no slant in ascenders of decenders gives it a mechanical precision. It was, infact, designed for metal machine printing originally. It’s monoline construction, with little or no differentiation between stroke weight gives it a bold, heavyset appearance. These attributes gives Rockwell a similar style to common sanserif typefaces of the period, such as Franklin Gothic and Futura. A mark of how popular the typeface has remained, is the fact that it has been widely digitised to make it more accessible. It’s main distributors include Adobe, Fontshop and Linotype.
Paragraph 3: The context of its use
Rockwell is a bold, weighty typeface which makes a deep impression on a page. For this reason it is ideal for short headings and logos. It’s attention grabbing and so in small doses can be highly effective at drawing the eye of a reader. For this reason it’s widely used in product logos, ranging from Malibu Rum to Marshall Amplifiers, as well as numerous posters and book and magazine covers. What makes Rockwell so effective in this context is the contrast it brings to a page. It’s boldness and slab-serif design, however, makes it impractical for large bodies of text. It’s non calligraphic nature gives it a clunky look and would take away from the enjoyment of a reader if it was used too extensively.