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Scripts: Elegant Lettering from Design's Golden Age Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson; First Edition edition (May 9, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500515689
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500515686
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 7.1 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #822,497 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Steven Heller is the co–chair of the MFA Designer as Author Department at New York’s School of Visual Arts. He is the author of many books, including Comics Sketchbooks, Scripts, and New Modernist Type.

Louise Fili is a New York–based graphic designer specializing in food packaging, restaurant identities, logos, and book design.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 24 customer reviews
They really need to do another run of these books.
D. Alfonso
There is a brief historical introduction at the beginning of each section which provides a context for the images that follow.
Jeffrey C. Devey
Anyone with an interest in lettering, type or design will find something to love about this book.
Curious Art

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Curious Art on September 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As a calligrapher & lettering designer, I'm a glutton for letterforms. I own quite a few books on the subject, but this one really stands out. It offers an enormous variety of script styles & formats--from typefaces to handwriting to neon signs & more-- organized by country & covering a wide time-frame. The design of each page is a beautifully crafted visual treat. I find myself browsing often for sheer pleasure, & it has already been an extremely valuable source of inspiration for my work. Anyone with an interest in lettering, type or design will find something to love about this book.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Trish Marie on May 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Thank you Steven and Louise for sharing from your personal collection that I'm sure has taken a great deal of time to collect. The examples are grouped by country of origin (France, Britain, Germany, Italy and America) and each chapter provides a large assortment of examples. Anyone interested in typography and looking for inspiration for their own hand lettering projects with love this book, I do!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By S.Webb on May 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Since the kindle and the iPad I seldom purchase a hard cover book...this was the excellent exception.
This is an extraordinary collection of the everyday advertising that elevates signage and print into an art form.
Fili has an unerring eye for form and her collection covers the sophisticated to garish.
Highly recommended.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Chuck Green on December 30, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I guess the reason I find ephemera so fascinating is that it freezes ideas in time. Advertisements, specimen sheets, instruction guides, product labels, and other forms of printed matter that were never meant to outlive their immediate purpose, provide a snapshot of the producer's intent and reveal a designer's approach to solving a problem.

If you know the work of Fili and Heller, you might expect they'd have amassed a rather substantial collection of ephemera over the years. Heller, a former art director for the New York Times and well-known lecturer on the history of graphic design, has authored over 100 books on design and popular culture. Louise Fili, formerly a designer for Herb Lubalin and art director for Pantheon Books, has authored another twenty titles, many of them in collaboration with Heller (they are husband and wife).

Fili is among my favorite designers. If you have no idea why you'd want a book of this type, take a look at her portfolio of work. Though she offers a fresh and modern approach, you can't help but see the influences of 19th and early 20th century graphic design and typography.

Discovering, digesting, and deconstructing the work of others -- finding the essence of how disparate elements are arranged in order -- is part of the design mind's blessing/curse. Whether it's a conscious effort or gut-level assimilation, you can't help but absorb the layouts, typefaces, colors, and imagery that pass through your vision each day and mentally store them away. The beauty of this book is that it captures some of the best of what these two experienced designers have found and distills it in a form we can easily access.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By James Breen on December 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book is really a great compilation of old lettering. There's not any real substance or instruction to it, but it will give you a good amount of ideas for projects.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey C. Devey on October 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book for anyone interested in hand lettering and the history of the script. It's easy to be inundated by the sheer number of images in the book (in a good way), which makes it a reference book I'll come back to again and again. The images are from both American and European sources, most of which date to the first half of the twentieth century. There is a brief historical introduction at the beginning of each section which provides a context for the images that follow.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pedro Fontoura on November 26, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a awesome book if you're looking for lettering references from all over europe, it has alot of letter forms its amazing!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Y. Miller on February 27, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent reference book showing historic photos and scans of signs and print material. It served very useful when researching a project requiring an authentic Italian script that was not too fussy. There was enough variety of styles featured to give me a good sense of where we needed the type to be.

This book is a type history mini-course in a book.
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