Thursday, May 14, 2009

Book Review: 1000 Type Treatments

"1000 Type Treatments: From script to serif, letterforms used to perfection" distributed by Rockport is my most recent addition to my inspiration library. This is one of the rare occasions where quality and quantity are both very high. Just thumbing through this book in the store I got more than a few "I wish I had come up with that" moments - which means it's strong design (and also means I wish I had come up with that). The reason I bought it, however, was not to make me feel sorry for myself - but to ask myself the question: "Why is this a strong design?"

The strength of this book is in its focus. This isn't "1000 good designs" or "1000 cool things" this is "1000 Type Treatments"? There is no confusion as to what Rockport thought was the strongest aspect of these designs. This focus helps me answer my question "Why is this a strong design?" with more than just "good typography." Reading this book we know that this is good typography, but what is it about the typography that makes this strong? For me, I tend to look at the relation of the type with other elements of the design as well as other type and copy. I find that color is something that I tend to underestimate in my own design, but one of the top things I notice in strong design. Hand rendered type is another element that automatically adds personality. A good design book makes you say "I wish I had come up with that" - a great design book helps you come up with a good idea.

Until next time,

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