Born in Decatur, Illinois, she spent much of her life in Pennsylvania where she was associated with the New Hope School of American Impressionism, the Fellowship of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and the Philadelphia Art Alliance, and what became known as the Pennsylvania Impressionism movement.
She attended the Art Institute of Chicago, the Art Students League of New York, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. During her artistic career she received several awards including the Shillard Medal in Philadelphia, a Gold Medal from the Exposition of Women’s Achievements, another Gold Medal from the Plastics Club of Philadelphia, and the Kansas City H.O. Dean Prize for Landscape. She was a member of several prominent art organizations including the Philadelphia Art Alliance, the Art Students League of New York, and the Philadelphia Ten.
She became well known for her work as a landscape impressionist who painted scenes that were blanketed with snow, such as the villages and farms of Bucks County. Her works included Autumn Gold, Bucks County Scene, Lumberville, Lumberville Cottage, Old House, Spring on the Delaware, The Delaware Valley, and The Delaware Reflections.
Fern Coppedge died in New Hope, Pennsylvania on April 21, 1951 at the age of 67.