Q&A with Author Alston W. Purvis What’s new in this edition?
The fifth edition has additional coverage of the Middle East, Spain, Portugal, South America, and China as well as multi-media and motion graphics. Also, much in the last chapters is new, since graphic design history is changing almost daily. The last chapters are always the most difficult since we are living in the same period when things are happening. What are the biggest differences between the last edition and this new edition?
In the last edition, I included many more images and improved the quality of others. Resulting from additional research and discoveries, I naturally made changes to the text, but I essentially maintained the same basic structure of the book. This process continued but far more extensively in the fifth edition. How do you choose the designers who are in the book?
Designers were chosen for having made significant contributions to Graphic Design history. What distinguishes a master from his or her colleagues is both perplexing and difficult. Although every effort is made to avoid this, there will inevitably be the realization that an important figure was omitted. However, the accomplishments of significant individuals that have withstood the test of time will continue to inspire us. With so much information to cover, do you find it difficult to revise this title?
Phil Meggs often said—and I agree—that one of the gratifying aspects of this book was being able to write the next edition, as you find things that you missed earlier and that each issue becomes more refined and richer in scope. Do you receive a lot of feedback from readers?
I welcome and greatly value feedback in every stage of the writing and editing. The feedback I do receive usually involves a point of disagreement, such as having omitted a designer or point. But I welcome any positive or negative input from all sources. Comments from teachers are especially useful, as I find it important to learn how the book is used in classroom situations.
From the Inside Flap
The classic "bible" of graphic design history—now fully revised and updated!
This is the unrivaled, comprehensive, and award-winning reference tool on graphic design recognized for publishing excellence by the Association of American Publishers. Now, this Fifth Edition of Meggs' History of Graphic Design offers even more detail and breadth of content than its heralded predecessors, revealing a saga of creative innovators, breakthrough technologies, and important developments responsible for paving the historic paths that define the graphic design experience. In addition to classic topics such as the invention of writing and alphabets, the origins of printing and typography, and postmodern design, this new Fifth Edition presents new information on current trends and technologies sweeping the graphic design landscape—such as the web, multimedia, interactive design, and private presses, thus adding new layers of depth to an already rich resource.
With more than 1,400 high-quality images throughout—many new or newly updated—Meggs' History of Graphic Design, Fifth Edition provides a wealth of visual markers for inspiration and emulation. For professionals, students, and everyone who works with or loves the world of graphic design, this landmark text will quickly become an invaluable guide that they will turn to again and again.