Sizes May Vary: A Workbook for Graphic Design

(Click to enlarge) If you are the kind of person who walks into stationery shop and pauses to inhale the smell of fresh paper or spends hours trying to find the ultimate sketching pens, then you will enjoy opening up Mark Boyce’s book, Sizes May Vary: A Workbook for Graphic Design, published by Laurence King. Similar, in some respects, to The Little Know It All, it is a book of sizes and forms for almost everything a designer might need to design for across a range of disciplines. It is...

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Three Books on Colour – Part Two: An Eye for Color

(Click to enlarge) An Eye for Color by the fantastically-named Olga Gutierrez de la Roza is the second in our Three Books on Colour series following on from Kelvin: Colour Today, which we reviewed in Decemeber. I was initially a bit skeptical about yet another book on colour, especially these days with sites like Adobe’s Kuler and Dr. Woohoo’s In The Mod and because Gutierrez de la Roza has created a set of Rolodex cards for each palette, which seemed to be an almost quaint touch...

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Web Form Design: Filling in the Blanks

I hate forms. Germany is full of bureaucrats that love them, but their forms are amongst some of the most poorly designed I have ever encountered. The ones lying under the book in the picture above have been sitting on my desk for a year waiting to find someone who can understand them. A year! What a sad indictment – whoever designed those should be weeping right now. By rights a whole book devoted to Web Form Design: Filling in the Blanks should be as interesting as watching paint dry, but...

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The Back of The Napkin

The subtitle of Dan Roam’s best-selling book, The Back of the Napkin is “Solving problems and selling ideas with pictures” – a reasonable description of what designers do for a living. If you are thinking you have nothing more to learn on that front, think again, because Roam has plenty to help sharpen those skills (and pencils). The Back of the Napkin is squarely aimed at the business community, but it useful to a much wider audience. Books about those two battered and...

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Back on the Grid

I have been off the grid all last week in the Australian bush (see above) and then in the air for the excruciatingly long flight back to Germany, so I felt a little editorial news was in order. I can recommend a week of being unplugged though. The review pile grows ever taller with some fantastic books coming up that will extend the scope of themes we cover – Dan Roam’s The Back of the Napkin is up next. As well as the continuation of the Three Books on Colour series, we are planning a...

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Indexed

Before we begin, I should admit that I think Jessica Hagy is pretty cool and her blog Indexed is not only a regular read, but also one of the things on my far-too-long a list of “things I wish I had thought of”. It is no surprise that Time magazine listed Indexed in their pick of the top blogs. Time also billed it as a “one-trick pony with legs”, which is a fair description except that I thought all ponies had legs, even the trickless kind.

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Shapes for Sounds

Guest Review by David Sherwin A is for Aleph. B is for Beit. G is for Gimel… When I was a child, Hebrew was beaten into me by a series of well-meaning teachers. Upon reflection, they were probably my first foray into hand-lettering type. Sadly, the letters stuck, but comprehension of the words peeled away past my teenage years. I have always had a nagging thought in the back of my head that if I’d seen a clearer historical thread between Hebrew and modern English, I would have...

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Winner of For The Love of Vinyl Competition

The For The Love of Vinyl competition has a winner. What a difficult choice! They were all good suggestions and I was impressed by Colin and Gregory’s analysis of the several covers they chose. Loved Matt’s ELO, Out of the Blue choice for the childhood flashback it gave me (actually rifling through my brother’s albums). Thank you to all of you who entered the competition and offered suggestions, but the winner is: drum roll… Diane Faye Zerr. Here is her comment: If my...

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Coming Up in 2009

Apart from announcing the winner of the For The Love of Vinyl competition, we will be taking a some time off over the holiday season. This might mean some comments take a while to get through moderation, unless you are a regular commenter in which case you will go straight through. We will, of course, carry on reading for the upcoming reviews, so we thought you might like to see what is in the review stack for early 2009. As if the above pile wasn’t enough, Pete Barry’s The...

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