Aimed at graphic designers – small teams and one-man agencies alike – the book Know Your Onions / Graphic Design takes a look at graphic design projects, from initial commission to finished printed product.
Explaining how a graphic designer is, in essence, a commercial artist, Drew de Soto shares with us his (productive) work methods in the book. Using to-the-point language, examples of ‘good design’ and clear language throughout, the book offers a complete guide to graphic design.
Covering everything from first commission to project management, the actual design process, presenting and printing, Know Your Onions is a comprehensive design aid.
Much of the book contains basic common sense such as ‘keep clients happy’, ‘be proactive’, or ‘allow yourself enough time’ but these elements cannot be stressed enough, according to de Soto.
The first part of the book deals with the management of your projects, with some good examples of how to tackle brainstorming, and what to do when you’re designer’s block starts acting up. A summary is printed at the end of each paragraph in the form of handy tips.
Then it is down to the actual design phase, dealing with type, spacing and colour among others. These chapters deal with the more technical side of design yet also discuss the creative part of the project.
The book then reverts back to practical issues in the form of printing, binding and paper and ends with some lists and practical tips. The guide is not limited to small printed matter – such as booklets or brochures – but encompasses displays, websites and more.
With a great notebook design and featuring blank pages for notes, the focus of the book is obviously at graphic designers, but many other professionals will be able to gain good advise from reading this guide.
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