Tag Archives: peter hall

Tibor, Steven, Louise, and Debbie: New Additions to the Family

Book spines: Tibor, Stylepedia, How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer

Thanks to a particular financial institution in the world which shall remain anonymous (which is also related to why I haven’t posted in a while: relatives visiting from afar resulting in a decrease of the usual access of my room and computer), I was able to add three books to my Design Library: Tibor Kalman, Preverse Optimist edited by Peter Hall and Michael Bierut; Stylepedia: A Guide to Graphic Design Mannerisms, Quirks, and Conceipts by Steven Heller and Louise Fili; and How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer by Debbie Millman.

Why I Got These Books

Tibor Kalman, Perverse Optimist

I had probably heard about this guy here and there but never really paid attention to it, until I saw this interview of Stefan Sagmeister where he mentioned that he had worked for Kalman and praised him of his work as if he was an influence. And if you haven’t figured it out, I am currently obeying to Sagmeister’s words on design and life, for he seemed like the ultimate “do-gooder” of design ever since I read the Nov 2006 CommArts article on him and his “touch people’s hearts” class. But yeah, I felt that Tibor was Sagmeister’s Sagmeister, so it’s like “doubled the good.”


I heard about this book on Sept. 5 from the Core77’s 2007 Hack-2-School Guide according to my GTD notes. It wasn’t really one of my first choices of books to get, but I couldn’t find any other first-choice books in the store (again, little respect). I figured that it would be a book to acquire once I get the philosophical/conceptual side of design down, when I have more experience in design where I could get more inspiration from this collection of styles. But I guess it’s still good to have around.

How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer

My first choice in this book shopping spree was Debbie’s book, and I was fortunate enough to find it the second (more like fourth) time I looked in the Art section at Borders. (By the way, I feel that not even major bookstores respect design as much as they should.) I heard about it on design blogs about the book release party and on the BADCast when the guys in the Midwest interviewed Debbie about the book. And from how Debbie describes the interview process, it should be pretty interesting to read.

I read the introductory e-mail that was replied to Debbie about the idea for the book, and I feel a little guilty for wanting to buy a book where I am “‘fishing for a recipe for becoming a successful designer’” (Geissbuhler qtd. in Millman 1). But then again, I don’t think it hurts to learn from the masters.

I am glad to have added these three books to my collection free of charge (except for the anonymous financial institution), and I predict a great enrichment of design knowledge for my noggin over the next few months.


P.S. No, I did not steal money from the anonymous financial institution.

P.P.S. Yes, I MLA cited that quote. I am that nerdy.