Jost Hochuli: Detail in Typography

Or to give it it’s full title: Detail In Typography, Letters, Letter spacing, words, word spacing, lines, line spacing, columns. (Amazon UK US) Detail in Typography… is one of the more recent publications by Hyphen Press, the imprint set up by Robin Kinross; typographer, author & critic. Published for the first time in English in 2008, Detail in Typography… was first published in Switzerland in 2005 and it’s translation to English has given this slim book a...

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Talent is Not Enough: Business Secrets for Designers

“Long term success requires both creative ability and business acumen.” In one succinct sentence, Shel Perkins gets to the point. Author of Talent is Not Enough: Business Secrets for Designers, Perkins is a design educator, chairman of the AIGA Center for Practice Management, and has more than twenty years of experience managing the operations of creative firms in the U.S. and U.K. Perkins understands this business. Practical and approachable, there is a reason the book is currently in its...

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Graphic Design: A User’s Manual

Graphic Design: A User’s Manual is a book I wish I had when I started out as a designer. In the follow-up to his previous work, How to be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul, Adrian Shaughnessy focuses less on the nuts and bolts of the studio and is more contemplative, drawing upon his significant experience as a working designer to offer equal parts direction and discussion. The book is visually striking, set in a monospaced typeface and very deliberately accented with one...

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Sketchbooks: The Hidden Art of Designers, Illustrators & Creatives

Sketchbooks: The Hidden Art of Designers, Illustrators and Creatives Review by Jennifer New Repository, Incubator, Laboratory, Sketchbook I had to chuckle when I read DRoB Editor Andy Polaine’s recent take on the creative process his review of Designers Don’t Read: “Over my own years of writing, I have learned a great deal more about the creative process as a designer than I have through designing.” The statement seems to hold a truism since as I writer I can invert it and...

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The transformer: principles of making Isotype charts by Marie Neurath and Robin Kinross

Transforming (Tranformator) – “The process of analysing, selecting, ordering, and then making visual some information, data, ideas, implications…” I have been waiting for the publication of The transformer: principles of making Isotype charts (Amazon) for a while now. I first became aware of the Isotype (System Of TYpographic Picture Education) work of Otto Neurath while working on data visualisation as the Head of Design at Lateral. At first I was excited about the visual style...

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Seeking Contributors for the DRoB

I could use some help. When I started the Designer’s Review of Books, I had a bit of time on my hands and managed to keep a steady flow of weekly reviews. I have been helped along the way by some generous guest reviewers and to them I am very grateful. However, since starting a more time-consuming day job the pile of books to review on my desk has grown alarmingly large. Regular readers will have noticed that the stream of reviews has grown to a trickle and that’s no good. I do...

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Design is the Problem

Review by David Sherwin “Would you like a paper or plastic bag for your groceries?” Seems like a simple question, doesn’t it? Paper should be a better choice, because it will biodegrade. Plastic will go on forever in landfills and choke our oceans. Well, my answer isn’t very well informed. There are major trade-offs in the consumption, production (and related pollution), and recycling opportunities for every seemingly simple decision that we make throughout our...

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Fully Booked: Cover Art & Design for Books

Prepare for this review to become rather meta. Gestalten’s Fully Booked: Cover Art and Design for Books is a design book about book design also containing six essays, three apiece by Katherine Gillieson and Maria Fusco, one of which is an essay about the difficulty of producing a book on books. Phew. As with all of Gestalten’s output, Fully Booked is a well-produced, finely printed and sturdy affair – regardless of the content, their publications never fail on the production...

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Designers Don’t Read

I wanted to read Austin Howe’s Designers Don’t Read just to be contrary. I read a great deal, as you might imagine writing these reviews. Indeed, one of the main reasons for starting The Designer’s Review of Books was a complaint about the paucity of writing in many design books. Howe is a Creative Director and “design advocate”, but most importantly he is a writer. So, I had high hopes for the book, not all of which were dashed, but a few worries about the title...

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Green Graphic Design

Review by Virginia Sasser We know that sustainability is an urgent design issue, despite the fact that some of us are tired of mainstream “greenness” blanketing our consumer landscape with tree frogs and leaf icons. But are we as designers aware of all the realistic ecological options that exist in our field? Doing the right thing is tough, especially when clients and budgets are involved. Brian Dougherty’s book Green Graphic Design is a useful read for any designer who wants to learn...

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