Seventy-nine Short Essays on Design

by Michael Bierut

Via Wikipedia: "Michael Bierut (born 1957) is a graphic designer, design critic and educator who designed the logo for Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign. [...]

Bierut was vice president of graphic design at Vignelli Associates. Since 1990 he has been a partner in the New York office of Pentagram. According to his Pentagram online biography: Bierut 'is responsible for leading a team of graphic designers who create identity design, environmental graphic design and editorial design solutions. He has won hundreds of design awards and his work is represented in several permanent collections [...]." Bierut is also known for his involvement in the film Helvetica.

He has published a book called Seventy-Nine Short Essays on Design, which was published by Princeton Architectural Press in 2007. Bierut is a senior critic at the Yale School of Art in Graphic Design and co-edits the anthology series Looking Closer: Critical Writings on Graphic Design, published by Allworth Press. Bierut is the co-founder of the blog Design Observer and his commentaries about graphic design can be heard nationally on the Public Radio International program Studio 360."

Every year I read the chapter My Phone Call to Arnold Newman (page 44) to my students. It reminds me to try and stay humble.


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Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre

by Keith Johnstone

Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre is in my Top 10 of best books of all times. A live changer.

Here is the full English text.

Via Wikipedia: "Keith Johnstone (born February 1933) is a British and Canadian pioneer of improvisational theatre, best known for inventing the Impro System, part of which are the Theatresports. He is also an educator, playwright, actor and theatre director. [...]

Johnstone co-founded the Loose Moose Theatre, and invented his system of training that has been influencing practice within and beyond the traditional theatre for over 50 years. [...]

Johnstone has written two books about his system; the 1979 Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre, and the 1999 Impro For Storytellers. He is known for slogans that encapsulate his philosophy of improvisation, and include:

You can't learn anything without failing.
Please don't do your best. Trying to do your best is trying to be better than you are.
Go onto stage to make relationships. At least you won't be alone.
It's not the offer, but what you do with it.

Thanks to William Bennett!

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