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Color Design Workbook: A Real-World Guide to Using Color in Graphic Design

35 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1592531929
ISBN-10: 159253192X
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Terry Lee Stone is a design management consultant, educator and writer based in Los Angeles. Stone currently consults to various design firms, including BMW Group Designworks USA. In addition to practicing professionally, Terry teaches at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). Stone has been on the Board of Directors of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) in Atlanta, Los Angeles and Miami, where she also served as the chapter’s president. She served nationally as the president of the AIGA Chapter President’s Council.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Rockport Publishers (January 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 159253192X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592531929
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #384,917 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Terry Lee Stone, is a design management consultant and writer who loves all aspects of design-- whether the delivery media is paper, screens, cake, or yarn. She has worked with top U.S. design firms including AdamsMorioka, Margo Chase Design and BMW Group DesignworksUSA and their clients. For over 12 years, she taught the business of design at the California Institute of the Arts, Art Center College of Design, and Otis College of Art and Design. She is the author of several books on graphic design: the Managing The Design Process series, Logo Design Workbook, and Color Design Workbook. Active in the graphic design industry, she has written for design magazines; served on the Board of Directors of the AIGA in Atlanta, Los Angeles and Miami; and has presented lectures and workshops for numerous organizations, such as AIGA and the Art Directors Club of New York. In addition to her work in graphic design, she is the co-author of Booze Cakes, her first cookbook. She also blogs daily about her current personal obsession, knitting, at Terry lives with her husband and their pugs in the Studio City section of Los Angeles, in The Brady Bunch's old neighborhood.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

89 of 90 people found the following review helpful By Parka TOP 50 REVIEWER on October 26, 2008
Format: Paperback
Length: 0:24 Mins
This is actually more of a textbook than a workbook. But it's not a bad thing and you'll see why.

Foundation concepts for colors are explained. That's the RGB, CMYK and HSV models, color harmony and color meanings.

Chapter 4 is probably the workbook part although they don't exactly give out step by step lesson guides. Chapter 4 is on the 10 rules of colours that should be used for reference when choosing colours. There are however a few lists that describe workflows when creating a palette.

This book essentially teaches through examples and explaining the color concepts behind those examples. The explanation is very clear and that's where most of the learning is going to be. Finally, there are 16 case studies at the end of the book, with the designers talking about the use of colours in their project.

Colors is about experimentation. Every design is unique and has their own set of limitation.

A nice thing about this book is that it has lots of interesting quotes. Such as:

In order to use colour effectively it is necessary to recognize that colour deceives continually. - Josef Albers

In a physical sense, there really is no such thing as color, just light waves of different wavelengths.

Research reveals that all human beings make an unconscious judgment about a person, environment, or item within ninety seconds of initial viewing and that between 62 percent of that assessment is based on color alone. - The Institute of Color Research

This book is perfect for people who want to see examples of how people apply the color concepts to their work.

Here's the list of chapters:

1. What is Color? Apparent Color, The Properties of Color
2. Color Theory.
Read more ›
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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Shashikant Penumarthy on December 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book expecting to find guidance on how colors work and how to use them. The book provides this, but not in the way I expected.

If you are looking for:
- A deep discussion of color theory with specific examples of what works and what does not or
- Insights from industry about how the choice of colors can affect production costs, choice of material, etc or
- Information about tools that can help with color selection, matching or proofing,
DON'T buy this book.

This book is about color palettes only and its approach is to give you lots of examples from the real world, from which *you* must build your own understanding of color. As a survey of the use of color by many well-known designers for clients of all kinds, this book excels. The most valuable parts are not the examples themselves, but the text accompanying them where the designers outline the reasons for their choices. All this is perhaps clear from the title, but I didn't think so.

A severe shortcoming of this book is it provides no examples where a choice of colors failed--for whatever reason.

Since readers have consistently criticized Rockport's use of the word "Workbook" for books in this series, let me suggest a way of looking at it that justifies it. The way I used this book was to go through an example, look at every line, fill, shading or photograph and use the color palette in several ways in some designs I cooked up-- constantly experimenting--until I felt I understood how those colors interacted and changed their overall feel. That's the workbook aspect that totally worked for me so I have no problems with this book being called a "Workbook".

If you regularly read graphic design sites/blogs, you won't find anything new in this book. But if you are starting on the path to understanding color in graphic design, this is a great resource.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By S. Manzana on January 22, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book rocks. Color Design Workbook is exactly what it's title suggests: A Real-World approach to color theory. It breaks down color theory in a totally useful way and has plenty of eye candy for inspiration. It has a bunch of sample projects to walk you through actual applications of the theories it describes. It's like a really smart, down-to-earth graphic designer (and in the case of this book -- world-class graphic designers) whispering trade-secrets into your ear. Definitely one of my favorite books on this subject.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Lori Otto on February 26, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I love colors... probably too much... but I always seem to pick the same color palette when I'm designing things, and can't seem to stray to far from them, so I needed this book. It's fantastic. It shows color palettes that have been put to work in real-world settings. It also has nice explanations on color theories and the meanings of colors. The book is well organized and detailed-- I haven't found an AdamsMorioka book that I didn't like. Great job! PS I got my book from an amazon subsidiary-- it was a used book from warehouse_deals for a smashing $17.08 + nominal shipping. You'd never guess that this book had ever been used. I ordered two other books from warehouse_deals, too... if you can snag a book from them at such a great price, you won't regret it. Their shipping is as quick as amazon's standard shipping. :)
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Michael C on January 19, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a student at the moment, majoring in Painting, and am very serious about color and learning the most I can... well.. I think that the book has great examples, talking about color theory that has been referenced in my color theory class, talking about stuff I have read in other books, basically, it is a great compilation of a lot of different approaches to color and their uses. The major problem I have, and maybe this is a little foolish, but there are colors in the book that are badly printed, particularly with the color blue. There are several examples of the color blue in the book, but it does not look like blue, at best, it is a purple with hints of blue (which is true for an additive color wheel anyways). I have looked at the book in many different lights, asked a couple different people and it is still the same.. the labeled blue, and the examples of blue, are not blue, it is a weird deep purple. If this were anything but a color guide for designers, then I would have easily given this book 5 stars, but the fact stands, a color book should not be something that has bad misprints.
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