In this witty and entertaining book Paul Rand talks about the state of contemporary design, exposes the lack of professionalism and transience of short-lived “fads,” and talks about the specifics of creative work and the kind of professional passion from which good design is born. The author illustrates his thesis through his own works, as well as works of artists and designers whose work he admires.
In addition, Rand examines topics considered relevant to most designers: the basis of aesthetic judgment, intuition vs. thinking in design creation, the relationship between the designer and the client, the role and place of market research, the use of computers, typography and principles of book design.
Design is more than just compilation and arrangement of visual materials. Design is the introduction of values and meanings, education, simplification, clarification, transformation, refinement, exaggeration, persuasion, and perhaps, even entertainment. Design turns prose into poetry. Design expands our perception, multiplies our experience and sharpens our “vision.” The design is the product of the senses and the mind, the product of an idea that emerged in the head of a designer, which (the designer hopes) will engage and captivate the viewer. Design, as we shall see, is also a tool for creating misconceptions. Deceitful design is often more convincing and effective than truthful design. Among its many guises—the lure and the temptation.
From chapter “Form+content”