- Paperback: 312 pages
- Publisher: CRC Press; 2 edition (February 17, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0240824148
- ISBN-13: 978-0240824147
- Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 104 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,489 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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White Space is Not Your Enemy: A Beginner's Guide to Communicating Visually through Graphic, Web & Multimedia Design 2nd Edition
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"This is a lavishly illustrated and 'well finished' book that will repay careful study...Useful and inspiring." - I-Programmer
"I found myself very engaged in spite of the fact that as a design professor I know this stuff already" --Jennifer George-Palilonis, Ball State University
"The mix of traditional and new media...is excellent. This is what makes this text good and unique."--Scott Farrand, University of South Carolina
"Even if you walk away with 'only' a couple of good ideas or corrections to your present modus operandi then you will have got your money's worth. This is a book that is capable of so much giving if you let it."--Darren Ingram, NetGalley
"Instructors, students, and professionals will value WSINYE for its concision, lively tone, direct, practical advice, plethora of examples, and a helpful glossary." -- Donald R. Riccomini, Santa Clara University
About the Author
Rebecca Hagen taught public relations and design courses at the University of South Florida School of Mass Communications. She is currently the president and principal designer of Sky Lake Design Studio, a graphic design firm in Tampa, Florida.
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For beginners, I recommend reading The Non-Designer's Design Book for a firm foundation on the core principles of alignment, proximity, repetition, and contrast. WSINYE might be useful for intermediate designers and web developers or freelancers who are looking for professional production tips.
The chapters are organized so they build upon the knowledge you gain from the previous one, however if one were to skip ahead you won't be lost. I'm sure you can start from the end, but that takes the fun away from starting at chapter one. This book teaches you the do's and don't's when creating designs. Starting with the mistakes every beginner will most likely make, duh. While you won't be creating some professional looking brochures or posters, you will have knowledge of what makes a design pleasing to an audience. There are several devices it presents that are useful and can be built upon should you proceed in that direction. I like to look back at the book too, I usually just skim the pages. The images themselves are nice to look at and can get those creative juices flowing.
And always remember that white space isn't your enemy.
The book lists the proper procedures for every chunk of design as a whole, in the proper order that the chunks should be learned. Starting with an explanation of what design actually is, the book leads readers through detailed explanations and examples of brainstorming, research, layout, layout sins, all the way up through storyboarding, web design, and print.
The format of each chapter makes it easy for readers to understand the information conveyed, and the typography communicates the information in the least-strenuous format for the eye, which speeds up rate of comprehension and increases the ease of reading. The lists of important information are concise and specific, elaborated on later in great detail alongside pictured examples and helpful captions. The images in this book provide comfortable breaks from the well-spaced reading.
Even when I simply flip through the pages, my eye is greeted by pleasing visuals and comfortable reading space that capture my attention. I have had an easier time reading this class-required book than most others that I have been assigned to read. Over the years, a few of them have quite literally put me to sleep in multiple instances, no matter what way or position I read them in. I find that this is likely due to the poor, typographic layout coalesced from too many columns, minuscule type, congested margins, pages overstuffed with type, bland wording on the subject, and a lack of visual breaks from the reading.
In terms of effectiveness of communication, this book has convinced me it is worth a read. In terms of interest generated through text, I am also sold on the friendly, but professional tone the text communicates while teaching. Whether you are a visual or textual learner, the book should satisfy both, and help make you a better designer in the process.
What's good in this book is the logical flow of information. There are some gold nuggets in the early chapters especially. As someone working in the web design field I can appreciate the realistic viewpoint of the "works every time layout". All of the basics are covered in this book as advertised. Later chapters do have some good information as well, but seem to lose steam.
What's not good in this book is the fact that it loses momentum. Again, it's a good book, I just wanted more. More in depth analysis of why a layout works and why it doesn't. There is some of this in the early chapters and it is done very well, however I really wanted more than is presented. Also some chapters seemed to be going through the motions for me and I found myself skimming them out of annoyance. Lastly, some of the advice presented to web designers is questionable, i.e. designing for 800px by 600px is not a good practice as only a very small percentage of internet users have this monitor size. The advice given to learn to design websites in flash as opposed to HTML is potentially life threatening.
Other than that it is a solid book and I would probably buy it again if I had the chance (I just wouldn't read all of it). Good yes. Five star, "my mind is swelling with knowledge", "lets go forth and design" good... no.
3 stars may be a reaction to all the careless 5 stars out there I admit it, but still I stand by it.