A Papyrus Caveat

Papyrus. A fun word. A word that makes one think of the earliest days of the written word. Organic, leafy, ancient, Egypt, & beautiful calligraphy are what should come to mind. But not for me. Oh no. When I hear the dreaded word, I think ugly, overused, tacky. Why, do you ask? Because Papyrus is also the name of a font that every single one of you probably has as a default on your computer.

It is a silent killer of art.

Take this as a warning! : steer clear of this font! It appears ‘fitting’ with that new eastern spa down the street, it seems like a good idea to use as the one and only font on your local gardening shop’s recent fliers for BOGO garden orbs, it looks like it should flow effortlessly on that label for your delicious green tea beverage…beware! It is tacitly pulling you in. Slowly, it will desensitize you to all other gorgeous fonts. Soon, all you will want is papyrus – and you won’t even notice.

“Why is she so worked up about this? Could it really be everywhere like she says?”

Yes, my dear reader, it really is everywhere. Keeps your eyes wide open, and you will find.

Exhibit A:


Exhibit B:

Wall Hangings

Exhibit C:

Yes, my friends, even Movies

So please, lovely people, do NOT use Papyrus for your various power points and other font needs. I ask you to join me in this boycott. There are many lovely fonts sitting in your library just waiting for you to see all of their potential. We can defeat this silent killer. We will be victorious!


Perhaps I have become obsessed. I will simply say, in conclusion:


4 thoughts on “A Papyrus Caveat

  1. nmwally says:

    Beautiful. I am crying a little.

  2. Donovan says:

    I hear your plight cousin, and I’m torn. You have established well the ubiquity of the font Papyrus but I fail to see a connection between its quantitative usage and the qualitative proclamation that “this font sucks.”

    Furthermore, despite the prevalence of Papyrus it still looks fantastic to me. Regardless of whether I see it on the big screen of Avatar or the campy wall hangings of numerous relatives, it still triggers those ancient, organic, rugged, and simple feelings. Do people resort to it too quickly? Yes. Should people take the extra 5 minutes to be creative with other fonts? Yes. But, in a pinch, when people want that antique-y look, is Papyrus our “go to” guy? Absolutely. And with good reason: it rocks.

  3. krdugan says:

    I shudder at your words, but I see your point.

    It is a matter of opinion, so I must say; when used properly & in moderation, it isn’t terrible. But that’s just the problem, it can’t be the “go to guy” because 99.999% of the time it ISN’T used properly or (obviously) in moderation.

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