A treatise on the development and practice of the graphic design discipline.
About Design offers an enlightening and opinionated, albeit concise, excursion concerning many facets of the field of design. It emphasizes the discipline of graphic design, while incorporating a taste of the author’s makeup. It is a definitive, expansive observational, and knowledge-infused treatise that is expected to be particularly engaging for students and educators as well as for design practitioners. However, much of the content could tempt any readers who may be marginally inquisitive concerning visual art, design, and the web of “creativity.”
This informative, and sometimes scrappy, expedition is founded on the author’s fifty-five years’ entrenchment in design practice and higher education. Consequently, there are many pointed and sometimes novel perspectives, but it is essentially grounded on the commonly acknowledged doctrines that exist within the field. Some of the particular chapter topics deal with:
defining the elements of visual form
an analysis of the concepts of aesthetics and creativity
establishing some usable guidelines for effective designing
outlining many factors that are involved with design education, including a sketch of its history
miscellaneous related subjects, such as considerations of what makes something exceptional
The aforementioned themes, along with others, are interspersed with interludes that challenge certain long-held assumptions, provide contextual references, offer insights and suggest some fresh ways to analyze how we see, choose, inspire, and do.
Insights and Provocations for Graphic Design Enthusiasts
By Gordon Salchow, Foreword by Michael Bierut, Afterword by Katherine McCoy
2 October 2018
6.12 x 6.12in.
About the author
Gordon Salchow is Professor Emeritus at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning. He is recognized as a pioneer of modern graphic design education in America, having conceived and then orchestrating the philosophy and the components’ structure of its comprehensive and influential professional program. Gordon has been a prolific guest-lecturer, designer, author, and awards recipient. He was past Vice President of Education for the AIGA/National as well as having been named as an AIGA Fellow and has served on numerous panels, including the National Endowment for the Arts. The author resides in Cincinnati, Ohio.
“The topics in About Design are the reason I’m a designer—without question. I came to the University of Cincinnati knowing nothing, and I left with an informed point of view about visual communication. In an age of Pinterest and Instagram, this book is critical to the next generation of young designers.” —Jesse Reed, co-founder of Standards Manual and partner at Order
“Gordon Salchow celebrates a half century of teaching and design experience. Part biography, part history, and part tutorial, About Design is an engaging philosophical dissertation on design education.” —James Craig, graphic designer, author, and educator
“What Salchow has distilled from his distinguished career is not your standard design ‘how-to,’ but something more like a memoir or even a philosophy of visual form—clear, quirky, personal, and humane—filled with inspiring insights for teachers and for their students.” —Chris Pullman, AIGA medalist and senior critic, Yale MFA Design Program
“Impassioned and vivid, Gordon Salchow’s About Design condenses decades of insight into an eloquent analysis of graphic design—balancing purpose with artistry, intellect with spirit—and allowing for creative magic along the way. Its invaluable perspective is truly a gift from this master educator to all of us who strive to articulate and inspire.” —Nancy Skolos, author and professor, Rhode Island School of Design