Monday, September 22, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I liked several of the pieces, including the Gutenberg Bible leaflet, most of the contemporary books, and another book written in French I later found out (the one that had the history about everything way back when). The Bible leaflet was incredible! To look close up at the printed section and then compare it to the hand written section you couldn't see any differences between the two. My favorite of the contemporary pieces was the "candy box". How clever and ingenius!
Overall the trip was fun and educational.
Monday, September 15, 2008
This is a great example of what advertising looked like during the Industrial Revolution. Many typefaces were used, and even some were hand drawn. Often times the most important text have shadows behind them. A lot of information was crammed into one advertisement. Some information so small that you could hardly read. I have also noticed that most advertisements during this time used distorted text. Mostly in the shape of an arch or a wave. The ads were very decorative with a lot of detailing, often around the edges. Information, images, and text were placed all over the place with no rhyme or reason. Most things I have mentioned are cons, but there are some pros. For instance they knew that to provide emphasis on something they should make it bigger, bolder, or have shadowing to make it pop out at the viewer. They were able to put a lot of information into one ad and it may not be very successful but they have started to group information together and form the beginnings of a layout.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
The Crystal Palace was a great innovation of the industrial revolution in Great Britain. It was both acclaimed and criticized for its design.
The pros of this creation include:
--It was modular (made of standard units that could be easily constructed)
--It could be (and was) disassembled to function for its temporary use
--Made of fairly inexpensive materials (glass and iron)
The cons include:
--A mechanical design that was criticized for its dehumanization and standardization
Stylistically, before the industrial revolution, buildings were made of concrete, stone, and heavy materials. Gothic Revival architecture was still popular, so this lead to the battle between Gothic and Classical. The Crystal Palace lead the way to the modern style and just as expected, cleaner, simpler forms became popular.
Friday, September 12, 2008
If you Google the Victorian Era, images of fashion arise. Yet if you type in Victorian Era art paintings appear.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
I found this image in the AIGA design archives. This is the cover art (designed by John Gall) for the book Doctor Faustus by Thomas Mann. Doctor Faustus is a work of fiction that follows the life of a German composer in the 1940s.
The typestyle used for the cover is Fraktur, which was based on calligraphy. This particular typestyle was created by a German printer, Anton Schonsperger, in 1506. I think this typestyle works well for the cover of the book for a few reasons:
- This typestyle just looks very German to me (which makes sense, considering that it was created by a German). Without knowing anything about the book, I assumed it was about someone German, or something related to Germany, just by looking at the cover.
- I have not read this book, but all of the reviews I read claim that the book has a very dark and pessimistic feel to it. To me, this typestyle is very dark and ominous looking, which seems to fit the book.
- At the time this typestyle was created, the word Fraktur was not only the name of a typestyle, but also a generic term used to refer to all blackletter type. Blackletter type has a very dark feel to it, which goes back to the dark tone of the book.
I think the designer did an excellent job of conveying the feel of this book. It shows that you don't always have to use a lot of color or pictures to get your point across. You can tell just from looking at the cover that this book is not a fluffy piece of reading, but a very heavy one.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Well, my image wouldn't save either, but to look at it just search the aiga.org design archives and search for the book titled Still Such because the cover is designed in the typeface Sabon as well as the text in the pages of the book itself.
Sabon was designed by German typographer and designer Jan Tschichold in 1966, based on the sixteenth-century typefaces of Claude Garamond. It is classified as Humanist or Old Style and the typeface is frequently described as a Garamond revival.
The typeface is appropriate for this book's cover because the book is about classical literature and Sabon is a classical font. I read a quote from the book and it spoke of "first country life" and "first Europe." It seemed to me that the speaker was inspired by his/her country's rich heritage, enjoyed Europe's beauty and splendor, and had a zest for life. The reading seemed almost poetic and the Sabon typeface shares this tone. Its fluid, organic shape and varied thick-to-thin curves reflect the human form from which it was inspired and it is used successfully in this design.
sources: thinkingwithtype.com, wikipedia.com, aiga.org
I found a book design off of the AIGA archives search engine. It was titled The Potomac Canal and having it set in Jenson typeface is seemed very scholarly. It was a history book and I could tell this by the name, George Washington, underneath the title. And on second thought, the type seemed to disappear into the clouds of the painting that was also on the cover causing a little airy feeling.
I think the designer of the book cover did a decent job. I think the title could have been larger, because the painting becomes the center of attention when first you want to know what kind of book it is. When I first looked at it, I thought it was an art book then I went in search of the title and found it to be a history book.
While the cover is simple it also packs alot of information onto the cover and it makes the reader want to find out more about the Potomac Canal and George Washington.
If you would like to see the book cover simply:
1) aiga.com, and click on the archives at the top of the screen
2) Once inside the archives, search Jenson
3) The book cover was the seventh choice.