ATG Book of the Week: Aspects of Contemporary Book Design

by | Sep 9, 2013 | 0 comments

Aspects of book design - www.uiowapress.orgTitle: Aspects of Contemporary Book Design
Author: Richard Hendel
Paperback: ISBN: 978-1-60938-175-2, $29.95 
Imprint: Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2013


“In this manifestly practical book, Richard Hendel has invited book and journal designers he admires to describe how they approach and practice the craft of book design. Designers with interesting and varied careers in the field, who work with contemporary technology in today’s publishing environment, describe their methods of managing the challenges presented by specific types of books, presented side by side with numerous images from those books. Not an instruction manual but a unique, on-the-job, title page–to–index guide to the ways that professional British and American designers think about design, Aspects of Contemporary Book Design continues the conversation that began with Hendel’s 1998 classic, On Book Design.

Contributing designers who focus on solving problems posed by nonfiction, fiction, cookbooks, plays, poetry, illustrated books, and journals include Cherie Westmoreland, Amy Ruth Buchanan, Mindy Basinger Hill, Nola Burger, Ron Costley, Kristina Kachele, Barbara Wiedemann, and Sue Hall, as well as a host of other designers, typesetters, editors, and even an author.Abbey Gaterud attempts to define the conundrum that the e-book presents to designers; Kent Lew describes the evolution of his Whitman typeface family; Charles Ellertson reflects upon the vital relationship between the typesetter and the designer; and Sean Magee writes about the uneasy alliance between designers and editors. In an extended essay that is as frank and funny as it is illuminating, Andrew Barker takes the reader deep into the morass—excavating the fine, finer, and finest details of working through a series design…”

“Rich Hendel begins Aspects of Contemporary Book Design by floating the proposition that, ‘these may be the final days of book design.’ Don’t believe him. For he then proceeds to prove himself wrong, chapter after chapter. Throughout this learned and insightful series of interviews, Hendel and his fellow designers both reaffirm and celebrate the enduring role played by design in uniting the ideas of authors with the enthusiasms of readers. Along the way we enjoy stories and lessons served up by some of the best designers in publishing. The result is a great tour of the very lively art of book design.”—Peter Dougherty, director, Princeton University Press

“In Aspects of Contemporary Book Design, Rich Hendel interviews a number of leading book designers who tell all and show all. The result is a wonderful and inspiring compendium of current book design. Whether you are a student or a professional, you will glean valuable insights to the world of type and book design. Sharply observed, these words are worthy of many readings.”—Tony Crouch, retired director of design and production, University of California Press

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