Mobile Web Design by Cameron Moll

Mobile the user; not mobile, the device. Mobile is more than just being wireless. Mobility transcends freedom from wires; it suggests an entirely different user experience. This quote from Mobile Web Design by Cameron Moll sums up the essence of his book perfectly. When designing for mobile devices, designers and developers need to think about more than just aesthetics. The portability of mobile devices has placed a much greater need on designers to understand the context of use, and how...

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The journey of larks, Life and Punctuation..?

I have been delaying reviewing User Design’s – aka Thomas Bohm’s – series of self-published illustrated books, The journey of larks, Life and Punctuation..?. Partly this has been a lack of time, but partly it is because I’m not quite sure where to situate them. I’ll take each book in turn: The journey of larks (Click to enlarge) The journey of larks is a play on collective nouns: “a failing of students,” “a snooze of lectures,” “an...

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Organic from Kapitza

Organic is the second release from the London-based Kapitza studio, run by sisters Nicole and Petra Kapitza. The book is 224 pages filled with colorful patterns inspired by the Kapitzas’ love of chance and randomness in the natural world. The patterns, which range in shape and scale, demonstrate a playfulness with color, layering and proportion. Organic is a paperback volume, handsomely printed on a soft, uncoated paper which makes the book a delight to handle. In his introduction to...

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Characters: Cultural stories revealed through Typography

Review by Veronica Grow Like most typo cognoscenti, Stephen Banham is fondly known for being somewhat fanatical and nerdy on the subject of type and letters. In my opinion, it takes the obsession of one such fanatic to compile such a vast treasure of information, so clearly, in the form of this fascinating book named Characters. Characters focuses on the cultural role that typography plays (especially in the guise of signage) in defining the flavor and character of the City of Melbourne...

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Function, Restraint, and Subversion in Typography

If you are a fan of minimalism, modernism or brutalism you will find Function, Restraint, and Subversion in Typography especially intriguing. The book, by J. Namdev Hardisty, surveys contemporary examples of the styles by detailing the work of many modern design studios. Many of the studios were familiar names in the design world, some were more foreign but still recognizable, and many were names I had not encountered before. (Click to enlarge) The emphasis is, of course, on typography and...

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Take a Line For a Walk: A Creativity Journal

This isn’t your typical sketchbook. Robin Landa, Professor of Design at Kean University in New Jersey, collaborated with some of the nation’s top creative experts to bring readers a brainstorm session in the form of a journal. Contributors include Rick Valicenti of 3st, Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, and design critic Jessica Helfand, among other well-known artists and designers. “Consider this journal your creativity coach or personal exploratory zone sans pressure,”...

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Magpie Studios Christmas Book Honours the Postie

A nice little book from Magpie Studios honoring the postmen and women – in the UK we say “posties” – who are working so hard at this time of year (we hope): At some point growing up, we stop listening out for sleigh bells and start listening for door bells. Our Santa still wears red, still fights the elements and the clock, still strives to deliver Christmas joy. Here’s to the humble postie. Working with photographer John Angerson, this year’s card is a...

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Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

This is going to be a short review because there have been so many reviews and commentaries about the Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson (Amazon: US|UK|DE) that it seems there is almost nothing left to say. The question this review sets out to answer is, “why should designers read Steve Jobs’s biography?” On a personal level, reading through the history of the development of Jobs’s main two successful companies, Apple and Pixar, was fascinating and at times moving...

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A History of Graphic Design for Rainy Days

Who can resist a book that provides a paper doll of Saul Bass? Jam-packed, whirlwind, and charming are the three best words to describe A History of Graphic Design for Rainy Days from Gestalten Press. On a rainy afternoon “somewhere in some country” the reader is introduced to the two main characters, Gramps and Kiddo. The young bored Kiddo ventures into the office of his Gramps, who is working on a letterpress machine. Kiddo asks the simple question, “What in the world is graphic...

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How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer

“I often get questions like this from students, and whenever I do, I get the sense that they are fishing for a recipe to become a successful designer.”  Steff Geissbuhler Critically prefaced via email correspondence by designer Steff Geissbuhler, How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer by Debbie Millman, claims not to provide a recipe on how to think like the extraordinary designers interviewed in this book but rather proves to be “a glimpse into the minds of these revered...

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