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The Non-Designer's Design and Type Books, Deluxe Edition 1st Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0321534057
ISBN-10: 0321534050
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robin William s is the author of dozens of best-selling and award-winning books, including The Non-Designer 's Design Book, The Non-Designer's Type Boo k, The Little Mac Bo ok, Robin Williams Mac OS X B ook, Robin Williams Design Wo rkshop, and Web Design Worksh op. Through her writing, teaching, and seminars, Robin has influenced a generation of computer users in the areas of design, typography, the Mac, desktop publishing, and the Web.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Peachpit Press; 1 edition (October 25, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321534050
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321534057
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This volume is two books bound as one: a new (2008) third edition of The Non-Designer's Design Book and the 2006 second edition of The The Non-Designer's Type Book, 2nd Edition. These are excellent books for non-designers or in fact for anyone who has to deal with desktop publishing. They teach you how to get control over the design process by verbalizing what you are trying to accomplish, and learning to trust your eyes. Also: by not being a wimp.

The Design Book is specifically about page layout (not graphic design in general), and mostly about laying out bodies of type. The most interesting thing about this book is that it (gently) rejects the idea that design is strictly a knack or an intuitive process, and emphasizes verbalizing what you are trying to accomplish. "Once you can name the problem, you can find the solution." (p. 10) "You must know what the rule is before you can break it." (p. 49) The book enunciates several principles of good design. Through many examples of bad design and better design the book shows you how to check whether the principles are being violated and how to correct the violations.

There's a very clear chapter on the categories of type (Oldstyle, Modern, etc.): how to recognize them and when to use them. Very Good Feature: each page names the typefaces used in the examples.

The only real weakness of the Design Book is the chapter on using color. It was clear enough but did not seem integrated into the rest of the book.
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Format: Paperback
I wanted to write a quick blurb about this little book that has gone a long way towards teaching me proper design.

I've been dabbling seriously in graphic design for about a year now and find it one of the most frustrating things I've ever done and also one of the most satisfying. It's very subjective, hard to describe, very time consuming, very sensitive, and totally maddening. When it works, it really works but when it doesn't work, it shows you the highest level of frustration possible.

Robin explains all the basics very well which puts you in a position to begin to experiment. If you just stick yourself in front of Photoshop and try to bang out a business card or a menu or a technical document (which you really wouldn't do in Photoshop), it's probably not going to work out well unless you've had some experience. If, however, you read this little guide and try it, you're going to have a few more ideas and at least understand the constraint you're working with in terms of color, alignment, etc.

This book is great for people without any experience in design who want to improve the way their documents, webpages, application screens, and printed material looks. You're not going to win any contests with this knowledge (and neither are her examples) but what you produce will immediately look better. The writing style is a bit goofy but I use what I learned every day in everything I produce from graffiti to webpages to technical documents to resumes.
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Format: Paperback
I just can't say enough about how much this book has helped me. I've been writing copy for promotional materials as part of my job for years, and I assumed knowing how to put stuff on a brochure or flier and print it out was enough. I had no idea how dull and uninspired my designs were until I picked up this book. This is the third book I've purchased by Robin and I think I learned more from this one than the two on web design. If you're looking for an in depth explanation of what works, why it works, and what DOESN'T work, this is the book for you. It's concise and comprehensive and I'll be using it as the first reference book I pull from the shelf from now on.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the best books I have ever purchased in my life. I love reading it and studying the examples.
This book is the marriage of two books in one.

I have an educational background in Visual Communications Technology, however my heart is in graphic design. I bought this book because I learned so much from Robin's earlier book, The Max Is Not a Typewriter. This book is excellent. She goes into detail concerning design principles with excellent examples. The second book is very detailed concerning the art of typography and the many punctuation mark methods used in the past by professional type setters. Lastly, she provides excellent examples to help the beginner designer learn how to become a professional graphic designer.

I have taken as many graphic design classes as I could as an undergraduate student. Yet I could not get admittance into the typography classes. I will say that the information in this second book is educating me in the art of typography so much so, that I do not feel a need to take a course in it. I will now purchase Robins Design Workshop Book, which is written for new graphic designers.

I can honestly say that this book is great. It is so refreshing to purchase a book in which the author not only cares about good design, but is willing to share her knowledge and expertise, as well as the expertise of her her design associates, of which she give credit to in her captions when she used the word, "we".

If you purchase this book, I am sure your will not regret it.
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