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Aspects of Contemporary Book Design
edited by Richard Hendel
University of Iowa Press, 2013
Paper: 978-1-60938-175-2
Library of Congress Classification Z246.A79 2013
Dewey Decimal Classification 686.22

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ABOUT THIS BOOK

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.

 

At the heart of this copiously illustrated book is the enduring need for design that clarifies the way for the reader, whether on the printed page or on the computer screen. Blending his roles as designer, author, interviewer, and editor, Hendel reaches across both sides of the drafting table—both real and virtual—to create a book that will appeal to aspiring and seasoned book designers as well as writers, editors, and readers who want to know more about the visual presentation of the written word. 

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