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Typography (Graphic Design in Context)

Denise Gonzales Crisp, Meredith Davis

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A fresh and engaging introduction to typography - and its context - in the digital age


The practice of typography has been radically transformed in the digital age, and this book is set to become the classic introduction to the field. The authors emphasize the practical concerns of designing with type: how to maximize legibility; identify the elements that make up a letterform; organize the reading space; design for both printed and screen-based output; establish a hierarchy of elements; and work with different grid systems.

Above all, the book emphasizes the importance of context in its broadest sense and of understanding the related systems, such as audience, technology and language, within which typography functions.

Readers are introduced to the fundamentals of pre-digital typographic technology, and learn to situate their work within a history of type design stretching back to Gutenberg and beyond. But they are also encouraged to think critically about typography: how are messages encoded in type and decoded by the reader? How do production constraints affect design practice? Do standard measurement systems aid or impede the designer?

Primers to each chapter offer concise definitions of key terms, and the text is illustrated throughout with hundreds of inspirational examples of typographic design. These key features ensure that the book will be used as an essential reference tool, as well as encouraging students to be creative and exploratory in their own practice.

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Size: 27.0 x 21.0 cm

Extent: 256 pp

Illustrations: 320

Publication date: 1 October 2012

ISBN: 9780500290507

Contents List

1. Relational Typography: Primer; Interconnection; Systems and Contexts; Formal Systems; Typographic Messages • 2. Reading:Primer; Expectation; Traditions and Tastes; Reading Tolerance: Legibility and Readability; Leading the Reader; Interpretation; Unwritten Messages • 3. Formal Systems: Primer; Manners; Mediating Formal Systems; Pattern, Variation and Contrast; The Form of the Grid; Form and Cultural Messages • 4. Materiality: Primer; Touching and Seeing; Production and Reproduction; Means and Medium; Materiality • 5. Language: Primer; Saying and Playing; Rhetorically Speaking; Abstract and Mimetic Type; Visual Style, Rhetorically Speaking; Message Systems • 6. Disorder: Primer; Containing; Measurement Systems; Classes, Nomenclature, Name Calling

About the Author

Denise Gonzales Crisp is Professor of Graphic Design, North Carolina State University.

William Temple is an independent design scholar.

List of Contributors

William F. Temple

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