Books Every Graphic Designer Should Read
Books led me to typography and graphic design. Love of reading became love of the medium in which the words are printed, of the type that composes these words, of the substrate that supports them, of the page layouts that give form to narrative and argument, of the covers and bindings that hold these texts and pictures together, of the lettering and imagery that seek to express a book’s essential nature.
Graphic design books are a kind of meta-book. These are the publications in which the art of making books (as well as other graphic media) is discussed. Any graphic designer who read only this kind of book would have a severely limited view of the world. On the other hand, any graphic designer who made a point of avoiding books about graphic design would have a highly circumscribed view of the discipline. For this reason, I have concentrated here on graphic design books and have resisted the temptation to dilute the mixture by including volumes about other aspects of art and visual culture that might also be relevant to graphic designers. To be useful, such a list would need to be three times as long.
Several of these titles are books of particular significance to me, but none has been selected only for that reason. These are contributions that form a vital part of the literature of graphic design, to be consulted wherever the subject is taught, thought about, or discussed. There are other core texts that could have been included in a longer list, and many other monographs, though the five below are all significant. My particular interest is in the history and criticism of graphic design, and I have not included books about design techniques and practice. Many of the titles here would also, I hope, be interesting to non-professional readers.
- Book List of the Week: Fiona Raby
- 12 Books on Love, Design, and Designers
- Thomas Girst’s Book List: Art and Cars
- 21 Books on Frank Lloyd Wright
- Book List of the Week: Anthony Dunne
- Book List of the Week: Dan Formosa
- 25 Books on Car Design
- Quote of the Day: Dan Formosa & Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire
- Quote of the Day: Phil Patton & The Afterlife of Emerson Tang
Browse by Discipline
Community Book Lists
Add your favorite design books to our
CreativeMornings Community Booklist No. 4: Rebelling and Creativity CreativeMornings Community Booklist No. 3: ChildhoodCreativeMornings Community Booklist No. 2: Make The Best Books for Freelance DesignersCreativeMornings Community Booklist No. 1: BraveryFavorite Design Books of 2013Favorite Design Books of All Time More...
Community Book Lists