10 Best Books on Design

  • Ametora

    W. David Marx

    Look closely at any typically “American” article of clothing these days, and you may be surprised to see a Japanese label inside. From high-end denim to oxford button-downs, Japanese designers have taken the classic American look—known as ametora, or “American traditional”—and turned it into a huge business for companies like Uniqlo, Kamakura Shirts, Evisu, and Kapital. This phenomenon is part of a long dialogue between Japanese and American fashion; in fact, many of the basic items and traditions of the modern American wardrobe are alive and well today thanks to the stewardship of Japanese consumers and fashion cognoscenti, who ritualized and preserved these American styles during periods when they were out of vogue in their native land. In Ametora, cultural historian W. David Marx traces the Japanese assimilation of American fashion over the past hundred and fifty years, showing how Japanese trendsetters and entrepreneurs mimicked, adapted, imported, and ultimately perfected American style, dramatically reshaping not only Japan’s culture but also our own in the process.

    @digitallynativ @RoamResearch Trust me, I know when RL started, that would be 1967. I have written about it. 1968 is the most famous image from the book. That photo, alone, would go on to inspire dozens of brands. Really surprised that you didn’t know that. Be well, read Ametora. https://t.co/9QU2V0nOBq https://t.co/AQGRbnxeJN

  • A playbook for creative thinking, created for contemporary students and practitioners working across the fields of graphic design, product design, service design and user experience. Design is Storytelling is a guide to thinking and making created for contemporary students and practitioners working across the fields of graphic design, product design, service design, and user experience. By grounding narrative concepts in fresh, concrete examples and demonstrations, this compelling book provides designers with tools and insights for shaping behaviour and engaging users. Compact, relevant and richly illustrated, the book is written with a sense of humour and a respect for the reader's time and intelligence. Design is Storytelling unpacks the elements of narrative into a fun and useful toolkit, bringing together principles from literary criticism, narratology, cognitive science, semiotics, phenomenology and critical theory to show how visual communication mobilizes instinctive biological processes as well as social norms and conventions. The book uses 250 illustrations to actively engage readers in the process of looking and understanding. This lively book shows how designers can use the principles of storytelling and visual thinking to create beautiful, surprising and effective outcomes. Although the book is full of practical advice for designers, it will also appeal to people more broadly involved in branding, marketing, business and communication.

    @erinlynnyoung @halvorson I mean, @kimgoodwin's "Designing for the Digital Age" is THE essential text. @ellenLupton "Design is Storytelling" is fantastic and economical.

  • How to

    Michael Bierut

    @berkun How To See by George Nelson https://t.co/dkmoEJOTGA How to Use Graphic Design to Sell Things, Explain Things, Make Things Look Better, Make People Laugh, Make People Cry, and (Every Once in a While) Change the World by @michaelbierut https://t.co/xUr7ZJJQxr

  • The Curated Closet

    Anuschka Rees

    Presents a strategic approach to identifying, refining, and expressing personal style and building the ideal wardrobe to match it, with every day style and shopping strategies.

    44. The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees. Over the last 2 years, I've enjoyed figuring out what my personal clothing ~style~ is and learning from ppl who seem to have it figured out more than me. This was an okay read, didn't teach me anything I didn't already know *shrug*

  • How to

    Michael Bierut

    @ColbySat I love the @michaelbierut book How To as well but it’s not strictly typography.

  • Creative Selection

    Ken Kocienda

    An insider's account of Apple's creative process during the golden years of Steve Jobs. 'If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to work in a hotbed of innovation, you’ll enjoy this inside view of life at Apple. Ken Kocienda pioneered the iPhone keyboard, and this book gives a play-by-play of their creative process –from generating ideas to doing a demo for Steve Jobs.' Adam Grant Hundreds of millions of people use Apple products every day; several thousand work on Apple's campus in Cupertino, California; but only a handful sit at the drawing board. Creative Selection recounts the life of one of the few who worked behind the scenes, a highly-respected software engineer who worked in the final years of the Steve Jobs era, the Golden Age of Apple. Ken Kocienda offers an inside look at Apple’s creative process. For fifteen years, he was on the ground floor of the company as a specialist, directly responsible for experimenting with novel user interface concepts and writing powerful, easy-to-use software for products including the iPhone, the iPad and the Safari web browser. His stories explain the symbiotic relationship between software and product development for those who have never dreamed of programming a computer, and reveal what it was like to work on the cutting edge of technology at one of the world's most admired companies. Kocienda shares moments of struggle and success, crisis and collaboration, illuminating each with lessons learned over his Apple career. He introduces the essential elements of innovation, inspiration, collaboration, craft, diligence, decisiveness, taste, and empathy, and uses these as a lens through which to understand productive work culture. An insider's tale of creativity and innovation at Apple, Creative Selection shows readers how a small group of people developed an evolutionary design model, and how they used this methodology to make groundbreaking and intuitive software which countless millions use every day.

    What's amazing today is that when you read a book you love that no longer has to be the end of your experience with the author. You can follow them on Twitter and keep engaging with their ideas. Creative Selection and @kocienda is my most recent favorite example.

  • Creative Selection

    Ken Kocienda

    An insider's account of Apple's creative process during the golden years of Steve Jobs. 'If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to work in a hotbed of innovation, you’ll enjoy this inside view of life at Apple. Ken Kocienda pioneered the iPhone keyboard, and this book gives a play-by-play of their creative process –from generating ideas to doing a demo for Steve Jobs.' Adam Grant Hundreds of millions of people use Apple products every day; several thousand work on Apple's campus in Cupertino, California; but only a handful sit at the drawing board. Creative Selection recounts the life of one of the few who worked behind the scenes, a highly-respected software engineer who worked in the final years of the Steve Jobs era, the Golden Age of Apple. Ken Kocienda offers an inside look at Apple’s creative process. For fifteen years, he was on the ground floor of the company as a specialist, directly responsible for experimenting with novel user interface concepts and writing powerful, easy-to-use software for products including the iPhone, the iPad and the Safari web browser. His stories explain the symbiotic relationship between software and product development for those who have never dreamed of programming a computer, and reveal what it was like to work on the cutting edge of technology at one of the world's most admired companies. Kocienda shares moments of struggle and success, crisis and collaboration, illuminating each with lessons learned over his Apple career. He introduces the essential elements of innovation, inspiration, collaboration, craft, diligence, decisiveness, taste, and empathy, and uses these as a lens through which to understand productive work culture. An insider's tale of creativity and innovation at Apple, Creative Selection shows readers how a small group of people developed an evolutionary design model, and how they used this methodology to make groundbreaking and intuitive software which countless millions use every day.

    @sriramk @stevesi @sachinrekhi @kevinyien @JeffBezos Read Creative Selection. You measure quality and depth of thinking.

  • Keep It Simple

    Hartmut Esslinger

    Introduces the success story of Apple from the viewpoint of Hartmut Esslinger, who as an external designer in close collaboration with Steve Jobs was essentially responsible for the design of Apple products. His authentic perspective dispels many a myth - a must for all Apple enthusiasts.

    @BosleyBeats @verge Esslinger book http://t.co/uDrRrKPhRF is good, But very worth trying to find affordable copy of Kunkel's, "Apple Design"

  • Shaping Things

    Bruce Sterling

    A guide to the next great wave of technology—an era of objects so programmable that they can be regarded as material instantiations of an immaterial system.

    If you don't have time to read Bruce Sterling's 152 page Shaping Things, make it. If you really don't have the time… http://t.co/uyNjsFT0AY

  • The Pencil

    Henry Petroski

    Henry Petroski's witty and unexpected history of the pencil includes a wide range of characters: from the American philosopher Henry David Thoreau, and Toulouse-Lautrec, who declared, 'I am a pencil', to the great nineteenth-century manufacturing families, such as Dixon and Faber. Petroski charmingly celebrates the design history of one of mankind's most essential, and yet undervalued, tools. 'One of those great books that starts a genre. A witty liaison between folk history and deconstruction, it manages to be both wide-angle lens and microscope. Enthralling.' Stephen Bayley

    Gift idea for the stylus/pencil/pen user on your list (including yourself): Petroski's classic history of the pencil: http://t.co/8mPK45ZjIO