Graphic Design for Nondesigners
If you have bought this book, or even received it as a gift (lucky you!), then presumably, you have at least a passing interest in graphic design. You’ve probably thought at some stage or other that it would be great if you could design a new business card for yourself, or perhaps that you would love to design the invitation for a friend’s wedding, but you don’t know where to start. Well, we’re here to help you out with that.
When I first mentioned to a couple of friends, who also happen to be graphic design professionals (we’re an incestuous lot you know), that Jane and I were writing and designing a book to teach design rookies how to put together their own design projects, they raised their eyebrows and asked. “What are you trying to do?
Put us out of business!”
The answer is, of course, not at all. It takes years of study and practice to become a professional graphic designer with the expertise to warrant commercial rates for your services, and there is no book I’ve seen on the subject which can achieve that in 224 pages. What this book can do. however, is furnish you with many of the basic theories and tools of the trade that graphic designers use every day to create stationery, newsletters, posters, brochures, logos, and so on.
The first half of the book covers equipment and materials; the techniques that control the use of space and structure in layouts; the use of photography, illustration, color, and type; and the preparation of artwork for printing by a professional printing firm.
The second half consists of 20 typical projects that you might want to tackle yourselves, either because you simply want to have a go at some graphic design, or because you are not in a position to budget for the services of a professional designer. The topics discussed throughout will arm you with the knowledge you need to tackle projects with confidence, and, with some practice and experimentation, you’ll be better placed to create more successful and professional-looking pieces of graphic design.
I started writing with the intention of keeping the book as computer-free as possible in order to accommodate those of you who don’t have access to any relevant software packages. Pretty much everyone has a computer these days, but they don’t necessarily own image-editing or layout software. It’s a fact that most of the subjects discussed in the first half of the book are not at all reliant on available design software technology—they are about space, structure, color, and so on. However, it wasn’t long before I realized
that graphic design and computers are now inextricably linked. I should have realized this from the outset, considering the fact that the first thing I do on an average working day is switch on my computer, and the last thing I do before heading home is switch it off. Therefore, the discussions do, at times, rely on the assumption that you own a computer and that you have, at the very least some knowledge of software that will allow you to edit a digital image or set a line of type. This could be anything from Adobe Photoshop or InDesign down to the most basic word-processing package, as either option can be used to create great-looking graphic design.
All that remains to say, before you head off into the book and begin to learn about the wonderful world of graphic design, is, don’t be too concerned or get frustrated about the way your efforts turn out the first time around. All you need is a little patience and imagination and you’ll be fine. We hope you enjoy what follows.
Tony Seddon and Jane Waterhouse
- Title: Graphic Design for Nondesigners: Essential Knowledge, Tips, and Tricks, Plus 20 Step-by-Step Projects for the Design Novice
- Author: Tony Seddon, Jane Waterhouse
- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Chronicle Books (July 29, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0811868311
- ISBN-13: 978-0811868310
- Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 7 x 9 inches