Graphic Design and Print Production Fundamentals
Wayne Collins, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Alex Haas, Emily Carr University
Ken Jeffery, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Alan Martin, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Roberto Medeiros, Ricoh Canada
Steven Tomljanovic, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Copyright Year: 2015
Conditions of Use
I reviewed this book as a potential textbook for my sophomore Graphic Design courses. This book provides comprehensive introductory to the practice of graphic design, especially in the print production sector of the profession. read more
I reviewed this book as a potential textbook for my sophomore Graphic Design courses. This book provides comprehensive introductory to the practice of graphic design, especially in the print production sector of the profession.
I have not found any factual error in this book. However, some of the links might be directing to the wrong pages. For instance, on page 34, the link to the Manchester Dog Street Life example only directs to the agency's main page, not the project itself. Because websites are changing constantly, it might be better to include some of these images in the book. I understand due to copyright concerns, this might not be possible in all cases. But including more details regarding each examples will at least help readers find them on their own if need be.
Most of the book's content will stay relevant for a long time because it covers many fundamental principles of design. The later chapters (5 through 7) can be updated when new printing and web publishing technologies become available.
This book can serve as a textbook for the undergraduate students because it is written in very clear and straightforward language. I found it easy to read and comprehend. Chapter 5 & 6 contain a lot more jargons and technical terms but they are explained well.
It is clear to me that the book was written with students in mind. Its language is consistently clear, though it was written by different people with different specialty. Chapter 5 through 7 could use more examples though, such as screen captures of certain concepts such as kerning.
The book can be used in several of graphic design courses because each chapter is self-contained. They don't reference to each other and can be used as separate units.
The chapters and subtitles are clear and logically arranged. However, some parts of chapter 3 should be put in front of chapter 2, as they discuss basic visual elements. There should also be some discussion of different collaterals that need to be printed as solutions to design problems, before jumping into the technical details of print production.
The PDF version of this book is minimally designed, which is a bit disappointing as a textbook for graphic design.
I've found no grammatical erros.
As some other reviewers said, this book has not touched upon any design history outside of the western sphere. It does use some design examples from other culture, but provides no explanation to them. However, as a technically oriented book, I don't find this to be a deal breaker.
I approached this text as a possible option for my introduction to print production class in an undergraduate BA program focused on creative advertising. I found that the content varies widely in technical level - from very introductory topics... read more
I approached this text as a possible option for my introduction to print production class in an undergraduate BA program focused on creative advertising. I found that the content varies widely in technical level - from very introductory topics like design principles and elements to incredibly complex print production concepts like how to calculate the difference between lab colors using Delta E. Some of the later chapters cover content far beyond what I would expect my undergraduate students to know. It’s clear that each author is an expert in their respective field, but I’m not sure all the topics fit together as one cohesive textbook aimed at undergraduate students. If the book was geared towards students learning to be print production specialists (own their own print shop, for example), then much of the content feels more relevant (except for the first three chapters, which may not be as relevant since they deal with design history, process, and design elements/principles). Chapter 1: Design History presents a very Euro-centric version of history. As the design industry is grappling with its overly colonized/Western-focused approach to design history, there is a lot of room to grow in this area. If this textbook is chosen, it should ideally be paired with readings that supply additional historical context from non-privileged perspectives. The glossary and table of contents is well-crafted and useful, particularly in the online version. One thing to note is that this textbook uses Canadian/British spelling.
I didn’t have any issues with content accuracy. See note above about Euro-centric design history in chapter 1.
Most of the content in this book is still up to date. Overall, the content could be greatly improved with the addition of supporting imagery. I know that obtaining rights for images is a challenge for open textbooks, but even some commissioned/author-generated graphics would have greatly enhanced understanding of many of the concepts in this book. When this book shines, it is in areas where the text is supported by graphics.
Overall the text was clearly written, though there was a clear difference between the tone used by various authors. The addition of a glossary helps clear up the definitions of technical terminology. There were several places in the book (particularly in the print production section, chapter 4-7), that discussed terms without first defining them. It felt like this text may have been intended for an audience that was already familiar with what terms like, “substrate,” or “imposition,” meant. It would’ve helped if images used were captioned with information about why the image illustrated the point in the text, and also included information about the context of the image (each image was referenced at the end of the chapter, but the reader may have lost interest by then).
There is overall consistency between the topics and terminology of this book; the addition of a glossary was a nice touch. See my comments on “Organization/Structure/Flow” below.
The book is divided into clear topics and sub-topics, and the table of contents clearly outlines those topics and sub-topics so that they’re easily accessible. Professors could easily assign particular portion of the text to students. Topics that really stood out to me as well-done were the description of the design process (chapter 2), basic type classification that focused on the capacities of the printing technology at the time (chapter 3) a good overview of gestalt principles (chapter 3), and the overview of how to choose paper (chapter 6). There are many other discrete topics that could be of use in the classroom in this book, and since the book was written by multiple authors each chapter mostly stands on its own, and could be assigned individually.
To me it felt like there were two distinct parts to this book – a very general broad overview to the history, process, and principles/elements of design (chapters 1-3), and then some very specific information about the print production process (chapters 4-7) that was highly technical and didn’t seem to be written for the same audience as the first few chapters. It’s possible there is an audience out there who could use both of these different knowledge sets, but the two parts did not feel like a natural pairing to me.
There are several different ways to read this book – online, or in multiple downloadable formats including a PDF. The PDF download is very minimally formatted, counter to many of the design principles and elements discussed in chapter 3 (it could use more hierarchy and careful attention to space; text lines were too wide, and there weren’t any call-outs.) The web version is better and includes helpful interface items like a “next chapter” and “previous chapter” link, as well as a button to go to the top of the page (and a sidebar with links to all the book’s contents.)
There were a few spots where an extra space in the middle of a word or in-between words snuck in, but other than that I didn’t notice many grammatical errors.
As mentioned above, the history in chapter one could use some additional cultural perspectives to round out the Euro-centric narrative. I agree with another reviewer that the quote starting out Chapter 1.5 (the section on Dada) should probably be removed/updated.
To represent graphic design comprehensively would require countless books, but for an entry-level book or as a book to review design concepts while really focusing on print production fundamentals, this book provides an adequate introduction. It... read more
To represent graphic design comprehensively would require countless books, but for an entry-level book or as a book to review design concepts while really focusing on print production fundamentals, this book provides an adequate introduction. It is NOT a book about history or the specifics of the elements and principles of design. There are chapters devoted to those topics as summaries. Instead this book really digs into to print production fundamentals--an area that needs to be taught but is often left for the last minute. This book would help minimize that and make it easier for an instructor to teach color management, how to create files for print and web publication, and other techniques related to pre-press.
The authors express some bias by the historical choices made in the Design History section. In choosing the various movements to highlight, they are making choices that give a generic sense of the arc of design history in the 20th century. There are no images to support these choices, although they are easily found online. It would be great to have a list of designers from each era in an appendix, and a list that would try to represent the diverse field of designers in the world. With Print Production--really the heart of the book, it appears to be accurate. At least enough that I would dive in and use it in one of my design classes. Having a resource that defines color management to the degree that this book does is a welcome resource. It is something that I have always struggled to understand. I love having definitions and examples to support learning outcomes not only for myself, but for the students of mine that might use this book.
Print production has shifted immensely over the past 10-20 years, and will undoubtedly do so again. Our role as teachers of design is to give our students the skills to know how to look for the best and newest information, knowing that elements will definitely change. This book does that. I would be inclined to use this book for chapters 4-7. Every design book will have an introductory section, this one lacks images, but they are easily found to support the content provided.
I have no idea how someone who is not familiar with design would read this book. There is a ton of jargon and technical terminology! But I am familiar with design, and see this book as a tool for teaching students that jargon and technical terminology. The authors do a good job at giving the big vocabulary and providing the necessary evidence to support and define it. It would just be great if there was more visual support of the written content.
Given that this book was contributed to by six people, the consistency in writing and ideas is clear and flows from one chapter to another using consistent terminology and framework.
Yes. Totally easily to divide into smaller reading sections. The table of contents links nicely to the various chapters in the book in an effect and supportive way.
Most design books begin with an historical overview, a presentation/summary of the elements and principles of art and design, and a nod to the design process. This book does that and then dives into print production. The flow of print production moves through the steps that one would take as a designer when prepping a file to reproduce through print or web media.
Seems fine, with what is included. I would love more images. There are some chapters that have relatively few--and I'm sure that is because of permissions and licensing. Regardless, it would be great to have more visuals to support the text heavy content.
Design is a really tough field. This book isn't really about a cultural representation, yet, in the introductory design history section the selections focus on milestones by white men. Unfortunately, this is the case with pretty much all design media. Women and BiPOC are often left out of design history. One has to dig and research deeply to find representation, and even then, it's really hard. The fact that it appears that only men have contributed to this book also underlines this.
I'm grateful to the authors for the work they have put into this book as well as that it even exists. Finding quality resources online for design is really challenging. I often have to piece things together to create what I want my students to learn. This brings together some of the concepts that I previously had to link together using various resources. I look forward to using it in one of my classes.
There are areas missing that designers must know. Things like copyright, permissions, trademarks, and the legal issues of being a designer. This is especially important in regards to so much imagery on the web these days. read more
There are areas missing that designers must know. Things like copyright, permissions, trademarks, and the legal issues of being a designer. This is especially important in regards to so much imagery on the web these days.
In the history section is would be good to share about design before the industrial revolution and how things like the new printing methods, inks, paper and so on impacted the changes in the design industry. There are things in some of the sections that make the book seem disjointed. Such as put all information about Color under a heading about Color. It seems to be all over the place. For students in introductory design classes this book would have too much technical information and some early students would be over whelmed.
This does not seem like an easy straight forward book. It is missing the following....bindery methods, green design methods, branding considerations. planning workflow, the various kinds of imagery (good photography, reflective art, vector art, etc.), measuring type, leading, scanning, repurposing print for web, story boarding, thumbnails, mocks, comps, book maps, and a few things about what jobs are available in the industry if one learns all of this.
There is almost too much jargon and no glossary.
There is consistently a lack of imagery for an industry that is very visual. For English as a Second language the writing style would possibly be difficult.
It does offer smaller sections to for breaking out and if for instance I was teaching about color I would need to breakout several sections and jump around.
There is little logical flow in my opinion.
To use the instructor would need to have back up imagery.
it does not seem to. What is hard is the text is weighty for art and design students who what to see things visually.
The quote at the beginning of the Dada movement could be misinterpreted if not read over and over given the current climate of our world.
As a seasoned designer of 40 years I understand the book and it would be too much for most of my first year design students. It is missing too much information and I would need to add too much extra for students to read. It needs simplification.
Overall the textbook covers a variety of important topics related to graphic design including history, process, and basic principles. This is followed by a few chapters on print specifically that focus on technologies, software, and the printing... read more
Overall the textbook covers a variety of important topics related to graphic design including history, process, and basic principles. This is followed by a few chapters on print specifically that focus on technologies, software, and the printing process itself. The initial sections on graphic design cover details like history and basic principles quickly, but I could see using this textbook as a great blueprint for introducing those concepts to students and inviting them to investigate further. Sub-sections like typography and color get further details, although are again fairly brief introductions to the concepts. The print fundamentals sections are very technical and walk readers through the steps more substantially, although their relevance to a particular course is more narrow. Overall I felt the textbook was comprehensive in the topics mentioned regarding graphic design fundamentals, but topics were mostly covered in brief.
Overall content presented in the textbook is accurate, especially on the graphic design side of things. I am less knowledgeable about the print fundamentals side, but all the content is supported by references and a variety of technical illustrations.
I love that the textbook started with a quick run through the history of graphic design. That section, alongside the graphic design process and principles, provides a solid fundamental understanding of the field. I’m not as familiar with the print publishing side of the textbook, but I do wonder if the technical details may fall out of relevance much in the same way a graphic design book with specific tools/software tutorials can become outdated. If those sections could be updated due to the CC nature of the book then I could see the strength of publishing via this model.
Visual examples are used throughout, but sparingly. Sections are well-organized and clear, making it easy for a student to follow along, but I could definitely see the instructor wanting to add additional visual examples to supplement and help explain the topics. The textbook kind of skips to the technical printing material in the second half, which is a bit at odds with the introductory nature of the first half. The technical details of printing, including the software and devices needed, would definitely need to be a part of the course to find those sections relevant.
Framework and organization of chapters is consistent throughout the textbook. The writing in the textbook, however, differs significantly from author-to-author. You can tell it was written by 5 different authors as the chapters have a different tone and focus from the first half to the second.
The textbook is easily modular by following the split between authors. The first 3 chapters serve as a graphic design introduction and could be supplemented by various additions of the latter chapters depending on their relevance to the course. By themselves, though, the first 3 chapters would only serve as a very brief introduction to graphic design.
Overall the organization of the textbook is well done with chapters split by author and grouped together in a logical order moving from graphic design fundamentals to more specific applications of print/graphic design. Each chapter opens with an introduction and provides learning objectives for the chapter. Clear headings and sub-headings allow the reader to quickly navigate the chapter or skim for relevant information. Each chapter then closes with a summary, questions for discussion prompts, references, and further suggested readings. The organization/structure of the book itself is a bit stratified, but the organization of each chapter is very cohesive and provides an excellent guide for those instructors hoping to discuss the reading with students in-class. I also liked that the references and suggested readings were a good mix of academic and more popular sources.
Menus and links are easy to find and navigate to move through the book. Pictures and technical illustrations are included at sufficient size to see the details needed. I appreciate that the textbook has an introductory statement/section on accessibility features of the document.
I did not find any grammatical errors in the textbook.
The textbook is not culturally insensitive or offensive in its presentation of design. On the other hand, the design history presented is very Euro-centric and discussions of intercultural design and cultural awareness are not included.
Overall, I found the textbook to be a good introduction to graphic design basics with some supplemental chapters focusing on print technologies. The organization of the textbook is clear and includes good introductions, summaries, questions, references, and additional readings that help guide students through the text. The textbook is a bit lacking in visuals, so I would recommend an instructor using the text to supplement the readings with additional visual examples (or have students find such examples as part of using the text).
The first half of this textbook is a comprehensive overview of basic design history, introduces visual elements and design principles, typography, layouts, and addresses research and concept generation. This section can be used for both beginning... read more
The first half of this textbook is a comprehensive overview of basic design history, introduces visual elements and design principles, typography, layouts, and addresses research and concept generation. This section can be used for both beginning graphic design students and non-graphic design students alike. The second half of the book is far more technical and geared towards more advanced students that will be working within the industry. There is glossary of terms at the end of the text and links throughout of examples referenced. There could be more images used, especially in the history section. The history section could strengthen the link between past and present by adding a contemporary section. It could also include a non-western histories and examples.
This text gives an accurate and concise overview of many topics. The history section stops short and does not go beyond Post Modernism.
The authors are using up-to-date terms, printing methods, and software. This will always be changing, but can be updated in the future. The history section needs to be updated to include references to contemporary trends.
Some chapters are more digestible than others. Chapter 2 on design process and chapter 3 on design elements, principles, and compositional organization do a fantastic job of walking you through both verbal and visual examples. The second half of the book is very technical and might overwhelm some students.
The first half of the book is clearly geared towards beginning graphic design students, while the second half focuses on the relationship of the designer and the printing industry. The second half would be ideal for more advanced students.
The chapters are arranged in a way that they can be used as supplementary readings or in a nonlinear fashion.
Topics are presented in an appropriate order beginning with design history, process, and visual aesthetics (visual elements, principles of design, composition). The second half of the book focuses on the logistics of production and evaluation of content, looking at color management, substrates, and printing processes.
This text comes in a variety of formats. I have looked at the PDF. Navigation seems to be fine, but this is a textbook on visual communication and it contains very few images or external links to examples. I can visualize the patterns produced by Morris, or punk era posters, but our students can't. If they don't see it or have a link to it, they won't connect with it and the historical summaries lose weight.
I have not encountered any grammatical errors.
This text gives an overview of Western graphic design movements, but does not mention or address any other histories or traditions.
Comprehensiveness: The textbook information on design history, design elements, typography, and design principles, found in the first third of the book, contains useful knowledge for all designers. It has introductory material relevant for... read more
Comprehensiveness: The textbook information on design history, design elements, typography, and design principles, found in the first third of the book, contains useful knowledge for all designers. It has introductory material relevant for foundation courses in design taken by all art majors, not just those working in graphic design. Subsequent chapters become increasingly technical and cover what occurs from pre-press to post press.
The text has content that is accurate.
The text refers to software used by professionals that will continue to meet industry standards.
The material is uniformly well written and clearly presented.
The terminology is used consistently from chapter to chapter and concepts are applied across several areas of design practice.
The chapters address the design process, design elements, design principles, and production processes and procedures.
The content is clearly organized and the sections are thematically unified. There are clear transitions and the flow of the textual passages should be accessible to student readers.
The text provides a number of hypertext links for further reading. The uniform resource locators may have to be updated after a year or two.
There are few grammatical errors. However, “Pre-Raphealite [sic] Brotherhood” should be changed to Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. The spelling of Rossetti should be corrected. The design history section has some awkward phrasing. One example is the use of term “avant-gardes” to refer to Cubism, Futurism, Constructivism, and Expressionism.
The text provides general information about design elements, design principles, the design process, and products that meet industry standards for graphic design.
The treatment of design as a form of communication and the design process as a form of problem solving, make the introductory chapters in the book accessible to students, and should help them better understand the creative process. In subsequent chapters, the authors, all pre-press and digital print professionals go beyond the concerns of desktop publishing to provide information important for using four major imaging technologies: the inkjet printer, the toner-based digital printer as well as lithographic and flexographic presses. The technical advice they provide for resolving common problems when using different output devices for advanced study and professional application, makes this work a useful reference tool.
The book's contents detail what to expect in a logical order. The first chapter, history provides a cursory Eurocentric overview of a 130 year period from 1860s Arts and Crafts Movement to 1980s Post Modern. April Greiman is the only women... read more
The book's contents detail what to expect in a logical order. The first chapter, history provides a cursory Eurocentric overview of a 130 year period from 1860s Arts and Crafts Movement to 1980s Post Modern. April Greiman is the only women mentioned. The last chapter, web2web, details the services this technology provides with a forward-think approach to the printer/client relationship.
The content is accurate and with a valuable resource section at the end of each chapter and an excellent glossary. The history chapter is lacking in any contemporary relevance.
Most of the material is relevant. The book shines when it focuses on technical explanations, like color theory. However, the history chapter, 1860-1980, is obsolete and woefully undeveloped. As previously mentioned, there is only one woman graphic designer and no designers outside of Western Europe, North America borders.
The technical chapters are clearly written and informative. However, it is difficult to convey visual information without visuals. When visuals are provided, as in the section on Gestalt, standard diagrams used to represent the first six principles. However, the next five principles have indirect and vague examples of posters and images.
The book starts weak but excels in the technical chapter. Chapter 4 and 5, pre-press and color management provide detailed explanations on the production process
Excellent modularity with occasional call-outs.
The material flows well from section to section. Links to footnotes would help. For example, (Lupton & Phillips, 2014, p. 13), page numbers appear but on title of the book.
A pdf on design should be designed. The margins which vary from page to page are very distracting. Hard to read, small tightly leaded justified type is 130 characters wide. 45-90 characters per line are standard for legibility. Images float out of context as they are centered in the page. .
Grammar appears fine.
This is not at all inclusive, does not seem to include any examples of a variety of races, ethnicities, backgrounds, and genders.
This book excels in its explanation of prepress and technical processes.
I feel that the text covers the key topics in design from the standpoint of defining the basic principles and concepts. Visual examples are limited and require more concentration on the theories and instructional verbiage rather than illustrating... read more
I feel that the text covers the key topics in design from the standpoint of defining the basic principles and concepts. Visual examples are limited and require more concentration on the theories and instructional verbiage rather than illustrating the concepts as you progress through the text. This text seems to be weighted more heavily on the print production fundamentals than on the graphic design principles. Each chapter is necessary for the student to be introduced to the processes that are available in printing, but it seems to support information for someone studying to become a technical printer rather than a graphic designer.
The accuracy of the information presented is at a high level. I cannot dispute any of the content, however the volume of content is rather limited, especially in the historical section of the text. So many more designers were crucial in the evolution of design and visual communication. As this text has dual responsibilities to the two areas of design (Graphic Design and Print Production), I understand that there is a limit to the volume of references, however, this text simplifies the origin of why and where this industry derives its need and purpose.
The content is relevant to design as it is studied by all design students. The technological information is currently accurate, but because of the rate that technology is advancing, some of the later chapters will become less relevant, replaced by new options and innovation I the printing industry. Given the nature of the Creative Commons structure of publishing, I can see the opportunities for updating the text as advances become standard practices. It is never wasted time to have a historical reference to better understand how the industry has evolved throughout the development of this form of communication.
The text is clear as a simplified introduction to design but becomes increasingly technical as the content progresses towards the printing and production sections of the book. Overall, this text is primarily targeted to a more advance course in technical printing. The glossary is most heavily weighted to the technical aspects of printing and production. This is not surprising given the greater volume of the text that is dedicated to those disciplines.
The text is written to two levels of comprehension that is not consistent in its framework and vocabulary. You can clearly discern the different voices of the authors as their expertise is more relevant and technical in correlation to the nature of the roles that a designer and technician might focus their interests. The best example I can give is that this is a text for printers who can benefit by gaining background knowledge from the historical and conceptual elements of graphic design in order to better serve the printing industry as technicians and sales representatives. I would use the latter part of this book for advanced design students that will soon be entering the workforce and will need to interact with sales and marketing representatives sell printing services to designers and corporate institutions. This is valuable information, but by the time this content is relevant, the students have already studied the history and basics of design and the creative process.
I agree that the modularity of this text allows for non-linear use and can support the assignment of different sections at the discretion and need of the instructor. Chapters 1-3 are necessary to be grouped together, but the best of the text is not reliant on a specific and numerical progression as it is presented.
The organization of the chapters seem to be logical if you were to read them in a chronological order. The flow is a bit disrupted by the multiple voices of the individual authors. This is most illustrated by the division of chapters 1-3 and 4-7.
Given the lack of complex elements and examples, the interface is very straight-forward and lends itself to easily navigating through each chapter and section. The user only has to master the table of contents menu in order to progress through the text.
I found no grammatical errors in the text, however that area of review is not my greatest strength. If there had been glaring examples I probably would have noticed. No text is error free in my experience, but this one presents itself as a confident example of professional writing.
I would say that this text is not culturally offensive or insensitive. I do not see examples, especially historical references, that represent anything other than a western (European) presentation of the history and the evolution of design and production. So much of the richness that we experience through the design world has been influenced by eastern philosophies and technical development and should be represented in a text that is predominantly about the printing industry and technologies.
I am guessing that a lack of comprehensive visual examples is due to licensing issues, copyright conditions and access to open sources of imagery and reference materials. That creates a challenge when choosing a text about visual content and processes that are best understood when you can see the references. Given that this is a digital platform, students could more easily jump to a web search engine as they progress through the text, but this could become cumbersome and time consuming and ultimately could discourage a student from utilizing this as a viable option in learning the content.
The book covers so much of the process that it's tough to cover any aspect with much detail. Some chapters are better than others, but this is a very broad range of topics to be covered thoroughly in less than 200 pages. read more
The book covers so much of the process that it's tough to cover any aspect with much detail. Some chapters are better than others, but this is a very broad range of topics to be covered thoroughly in less than 200 pages.
Accuracy seems good.
Relevant for today's printing tech.
Some topics covered are so technical that it's easy to get lost.
Terminology seems consistent even though there are several authors.
Each chapter is divided into modules or subtopics.
Follows a logical outline from history to production.
It's not very visually engaging. It looks like it's a draft that hasn't yet been designed. There just needs to be more examples and more thought put into the layout.
No significant grammar issues
I didn't detect a problem here.
It feels like this is a good draft, but it's not very visually engaging. Well written, but not well presented.
The Text is comprehensive in coverage of key ideas and concepts related to graphic design. First Chapters give a solid introduction to history of graphic design and design process. Latter chapters are intended for more advanced students and are... read more
The Text is comprehensive in coverage of key ideas and concepts related to graphic design. First Chapters give a solid introduction to history of graphic design and design process. Latter chapters are intended for more advanced students and are focused on printing process. While there is no index, the reader may refer to the chapter titles and the glossaries found at the end. The key terms and questions list at the beginning and end of each chapter was particularly helpful.
The content is accurate and clear, with no evident errors. The study questions appear to be carefully stated and relate to each chapter. More information related to each art movement discussed in the book would be helpful, as well as information that pertains to software used for certain exercises.
The most content is up-to-date and the text is written in a way to easily be updated. Chapters 4-7 will need to be updated in near future.
The concepts were clear to me as a reader, but some of that could be because of prior knowledge of the subject. For a first-time reader, some ideas could be explained better, specifically second part of the book where technical terms are introduced. Students would need to refer to outside sources to fully comprehend the book. More visuals would be helpful.
The writing throughout is consistent and keeps a solid voice that does not confuse the reader. As stated before book seems to be divided into two parts, first part being intended for the beginning students and second part for more advanced.
The book seems to be simply fragmented into small parts to provide foundational knowledge for beginning design students, as well as more advanced students.
The information within each section is generally well presented and organized, however some chapters lack the connection needed for more comprehensive reading.
There are no significant problems with interface. It is very easy to navigate thru chapters. One thing it would be beneficial is to introduce more graphics as well as references in form of video, links to websites, etc.
The text contains no grammatical errors.
The text references mostly European and North American art movements and artist.
The topics covered in this book are comprehensive, but vary in the level of detail and intended audience. It it more of a theoretical guide for the design process, and a technical guide for the printing process. The early chapters about graphic... read more
The topics covered in this book are comprehensive, but vary in the level of detail and intended audience. It it more of a theoretical guide for the design process, and a technical guide for the printing process. The early chapters about graphic design history, process and elements provide a good introductory overview of topics that could each fill an entire book on their own for more advanced students. The later chapters abruptly turn to more technical and in-depth information about printing technologies, from the perspective of preparing completed files for printing. There is very little technical information associated with the design process, and there is no mention of some print considerations that often challenge beginners, such as margins and bleeds. A number of software programs are referenced (such as Adobe InDesign), but without any discussion of the strengths of different software programs and how to set up documents for different projects.
I did not observe any factual errors. There are a few topics where a specific workflow is presented as the best or standard way to do things, when there are other valid workflows (especially in other industries), and some of the historical information is so succinct that it oversimplifies cause and effect. There are very few mentions of web design and web publishing at all, and most of these overplay the idea that the web requires a wholly different approach.
The historic information will remain relevant, and references to software or design standards are up to date with the latest versions. This should be relatively easy to update should any standards change in the future. The final chapter about web2print technologies feels somewhat dated since the ability to order products online (including printed design products) is well-established and not a novel way of conducting business.
A significant weakness in many of the chapters is the lack of visuals, which would greatly improve the clarity when describing visual principles and processes. The chapters with visuals have the best clarity for this reason. The writing styles vary between authors, as expected, but overall the writing is clear and understandable. There is often not enough context for jargon and technical terminology, and some of the analogies are more confusing than helpful — this seems like material that could work well in a lecture format, but is difficult to follow in the text. This is true of both the historic and technological information. It could be a good in-class exercise to have students split up the first chapter and find visuals and supplementary information for the many names and movements that are mentioned.
There are no overt contradictions of ideas or terms, which is a strength considering the multiple authors. The perspectives are very different, however: The initial chapters are written from a creative perspective, and the later chapters are from a technical perspective. The overall structure of each chapter is consistent, with an overview followed by sub-chapters and concluding with review questions. However, there are differences with whether vocabulary terms are in bold type, whether block quotes are used, how material is cited in the text, etc.
Modularity is a true strength of this book. The later chapters on print production have a more limited audience, but the early chapters on design history and process could be relevant for many courses, and are written at a mostly introductory level. Chapter 3, about design elements, would work especially well as a standalone chapter in a wide range of courses. Chapter 2 is also an excellent overview of graphic design as an iterative process, which would be useful in many courses of different levels.
This book is fairly well-organized, but there are some inconsistencies with the chapter organization. For example, Chapter 3 defines typography terms that are used, without definitions, in Chapter 1. The idea of "grid" is discussed several times before it is formally defined in Chapter 3.4. The overview of printing methods in Chapter 6 makes the information in Chapters 4 and 5 much easier to understand. There is some redundant information, such as discussing variable data in Chapter 6 and again in Chapter 7. This is a benefit for modularity, though.
The online interface is organized well and easy to navigate between chapters. The option to increase/decrease font size is a useful feature. There are some chapters without any visuals at all, which is a lost opportunity for a book about visual design.
There are no distracting typos or grammatical errors. Minor errors that other reviewers have pointed out (such as "complrments" in Chapter 3.2) have not been corrected yet.
The book is not insensitive and does not use many examples. The design history is presented from a European and North American perspective, so that could be an opportunity for broader inclusion, but it does not compare unfavorably to similar texts on this topic. Similarly, technical information puts an emphasis on North American standards, but that is appropriate given the expertise of the authors and the intended student audience. The fact that other standards exist in the world is mentioned.
This book is primarily focused on a corporate/commercial design perspective, though this is not stated; small changes in vocabulary or examples could make it more applicable to news design, nonprofit and education design, etc. Adapting the first several chapters of this text for design thinking in different fields would be an excellent collaborative project for faculty in other disciplines.
Approaching design as a problem-solving process is useful and relevant for a range of disciplines and knowledge levels. The coverage of visual elements, compositional principles, and organizational principles is very thorough and provides a... read more
Approaching design as a problem-solving process is useful and relevant for a range of disciplines and knowledge levels. The coverage of visual elements, compositional principles, and organizational principles is very thorough and provides a productive framework for design projects. The information about color selection and production ranges from the introductory to the highly technical. While this content may not pertain to all readers, it adds depth and raises important concerns central to graphic design and may spur readers to ask important questions.
While the text takes a different approach to the principles of design than my current text, the information provided seems accurate, thoughtful, and usable. Frankly some of the technical details about color science were outside my knowledge base; therefore, I cannot speak to their accuracy. The information about the history of design movements also seems accurate although additional examples and justifications for addressing the specific movements covered would be beneficial.
The historical, design process, and design principles content addressed in the first three chapters will not degrade or lose relevance over time. The technical information about color science, graphic production, and web2print covered in chapters 4-7 could become less useful as digital technologies change and progress over time.
Chapters 2 and 3 that address design processes and principles are clear and well supported with specific examples and visuals. For example, the discussion of principles like similarity and continuation are supported by useful and illustrative graphics. The heavily technical chapters are less clear in that they assume more background knowledge and refer to equipment and terminologies, such as equipment like spectrophotometers, with which students may not be familiar. Providing additional explanations and even images of these items could benefit less knowledgeable readers. The section covering history could also benefit from examples and illustrations. For instance, this chapter could reference buildings, art, or other items created out of each design movement.
Each chapter is structured in the same manner, allowing readers to learn how to process the content. The references are formatted consistently, and all images have captions although some could be more descriptive.
The text is modular in nature. Each chapter is separated into sections of a reasonable length, making it possible to assign only some sections of specific chapters. I can envision teaching a document design course using this text, but I might assign chapter 3 prior to chapter 2. Each chapter works well independently and would allow this restructuring. Portions of the more technical chapters would be beneficial for my students. For instance, I might not use the earlier sections of chapter 4 but assign 4.11 as it relates to the applications that we are using in the course.
The information is organized appropriately within and across chapters. While I might teach the chapters in a different order, within the chapters, useful content is connected and ordered appropriately so that readers can gain the knowledge needed to grasp subsequent concepts. The lists of learning objectives, while useful in theory, are too long and overwhelming. The authors might be more selective or chunk the objectives, making them easier to process.
The text could benefit from many more visuals in some sections, such as the section about history. The interface provides adequate blank space, and the content is chunked effectively into sections, making it easy to skim. For a design text, the glossary is formatted in a disappointing manner. Presenting all terms in one long bulleted list makes the items very difficult to process. The items might be chunked by first letter as is typical in glossaries or indices.
As other reviews noted, I detected some editing errors in the text. Overall, the content is clearly written.
The text has a notably Western orientation in relation to the history of design and the design principles addressed. Little effort is made to contextualize the information culturally and highlight the degree to which there are other perspectives in alternate design traditions and principles outside of Western traditions. The text also assumes access to high-level design and printing technologies. Additionally, readers who lack access to these technologies might find the book to be less useful.
The summary at the end of each chapter provides a useful overview of the content. However, the exercises are more like discussion questions than exercises that ask readers to apply the content. The text could benefit from actual exercises and project suggestions that could aid readers to take action based upon the content covered.
This book has some great chapters on the process of concept development and design, that give a great introduction to the design process. The section on design seems to speak to beginners and gives them a good introduction to design and I feel... read more
This book has some great chapters on the process of concept development and design, that give a great introduction to the design process. The section on design seems to speak to beginners and gives them a good introduction to design and I feel that by the time you reach the section on Printing it gets a lot more technical and would speak to someone who is a bit more advanced in their design knowledge.
The information in this book relating to design, printing and the history of design are accurate. One thing that should be mentioned is that they do not mention what version of the software they are using. For example InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator are mentioned multiple times. Without mentioning what version they are using (CC?) some confusion can happen when they are talking about specific functions within these design tools, as the functions or names of the processes being discussed could have changed, if you are using a newer version, or not be available, if you are using an older version.
The section on the history of design is one that will have longevity but I think as technology changes the ones on printing will need updating. As it currently stands the information is relevant although the information on the design process could be updated to the latest design thinking process and the terminology that goes along with it. The process mentioned in the book included the following steps: Define, Research, Develop Concepts and Implement Solutions and the new design thinking process covers more steps including: Empathise, Define, Generate Ideas / Brainstorm, Develop Solutions, Gather Feedback and Improve. The extra steps are included in the text but the new terminology is not used.
There are a lot of technical terms within this book and only some of them are defined in the glossary. It would be more useful too if they were defined within context so you didn't have to keep flipping back to the glossary page as you may need to remind yourself what a certain word means. It was a little bit difficult reading some of the more technical chapters, like the ones on printing, as they were filled with technical jargon and were written for a different skill level than the introductory chapters were.
The book seems to be split on the target audience who would be reading it. The first half gives a good introduction to the history of design and the design process for a beginner. The second half is more in depth and is very jargon heavy, and would be more suited to someone who is more advanced. In terms of using it as a teaching tool I think the first half would be a good resource to point your beginner students too and only utilise the second half for more advanced students or ones who have demonstrated a particular interest in the printing process.
The text is well divided and I can see how it could be split up or reorganised to suit a specific learning environment.
Some work is needed on the overall structure / flow of the book. Because it is already split into blocks I think this could be easily done. Just some small edits could be done to correct these issues. Mainly the issue is that in some sections more advanced information is presented before some more basic definitions and information so that would need to be changed around. (eg the colour management section)
I had a number of issues with the interface, firstly this is a book about design so there should be more visuals inserted into the text. There were also issues with the layout, for example if you look at page 91 and 92. The text on page 91 is indented and the text on 92 is further in. This formatting issue appears all over the book and for me it was a visual distraction moving in and out as you went between pages. As it is a book on design I also thought that there could have been more design involved in the book itself. Chapter pages are just text on a white page and there is no design element involved. It would be nice to see the principals talked about in the book being included in its actual design.
On page 53 compliments is misspelled On page 22 in this sentence: "Defining goals allows you to home in on precisely what to communicate" - Is the phrase hone in?
This textbook covers a wide variety of subjects within it's stated purpose. In some areas, it is comprehensive - color management systems - while in others somewhat more cursory - typefaces. The book does have a glossary at the end . There is no... read more
This textbook covers a wide variety of subjects within it's stated purpose. In some areas, it is comprehensive - color management systems - while in others somewhat more cursory - typefaces. The book does have a glossary at the end . There is no index. The chapters discussing color management seem very detailed.
The book seems accurate and also provides sources, as well as "further reading" lists. Some of the directions for InDesign, PhotoShop, Illustrator may change as new iterations are released.
The chapters on current color management may need updating as soon as the programs and/or technology changes. In some chapters, this may require quite a bit of replacement text.
The color management section requires some technical knowledge. Some of these chapters would take a bit more background knowledge.
The book is consistent from front to back.
The earlier chapters have illustrations that provide reading "breaks." Some of the more technical chapters could use this. For instance, pages 124-128 have a few subheads, but could use some visual breaks for readers.
The book is organized in linear fashion, following the production time line. This makes sense for students.
I viewed the book both as a pdf and from the html file. The pdf is well organized and easy to use. The html file is rather straight forward also, but any images are only displayed flush left (rather than next to each other), which doesn't give it a "finished" professional quality, but is easy to access.
I found no errors in the text. The text does use first and second person frequently.
This doesn't really apply to this text. It does discuss designers, but pictures only one. Examples used for various parts of the book were photos of cars.
I found that this book's focus on color management in the printing process seems valuable to those more advanced students. This would not be appropriate for beginners. In the same vein, beginning students would need more information at the beginning of the book in terms of design fundamentals.
This book gives an introduction to some key principles in graphic design, in printing, and in design business management. It gives an introduction, not a comprehensive study of any of those three fields. Some sections are written to a beginning... read more
This book gives an introduction to some key principles in graphic design, in printing, and in design business management. It gives an introduction, not a comprehensive study of any of those three fields. Some sections are written to a beginning reader while others are written to readers with extensive background already in the subject.
The graphic design information is accurate. The printing information appears to be accurate, but the text doesn't always mention which version of the software they are referring to. I gave the book a "3" for accuracy because of this concern. Since printing and design software can change substantially in subsequent versions, readers will need to know which software version is being discussed.
Some of the information in the book is out of order. For example, the project management information is presented with complex details in one chapter then the foundational information needed to understand those details is in a later chapter. A graphic design student would usually get the information on basic design principles, then some practice, then the really detailed info on project management. The same issue happens with vocabulary. A term is used repeatedly, then in later chapters the same term is bolded to show that it is in the glossary with a definition. Words that need definitions should be bolded the first time they are used since this text uses bolding to show words defined in a glossary. Better yet, the words should be defined in text. Also, some words like incunabula, bespoke, baseline grid, proofer, output device, output profile, color chart, natural base state, patch, option prompts, read head, etc. are either not defined at all or not bolded to send students to the glossary.
Too many technical terms are left undefined, and the ones which have definitions in the glossary are not always bolded on first use (or at all). The text uses bolding of words to show that the words are in the glossary, but many readers would prefer that terms were defined at the chapter level either in text or at the beginning of the chapter. The graphic design chapter is written for a beginning student, but the printing chapters are written for advanced students. A few sentences are hard to read: "“What happens when we project two of the three additive primaries on top of each other? This is the same as removing or subtracting one of the additive primaries from white light. Let’s start with red and green.”
The graphic design chapter is written for a beginning student, but the printing chapters are written for advanced students. This book would be helpful as supplemental reading for instructors, however.
Yes. You will need the modules because the text will have to be separated for different classes. Few beginning graphic design classes will cover the advanced printing information from this text but they could use the graphic design information.
Difficult vocabulary and technical terms are presented in one chapter then defined in later chapters or units. Color management information is presented in fine detail prior to readers being given the goal for color management. Sometimes foundational or background information is presented after the topic has been discussed for pages. However, in spite of the problems, I still learned a lot from chapter 5.
The images and charts that the book has are wonderful. However, this is a graphic design and printing arts book, so readers and instructors will expect many more images than the book provides. The chapter on color, for instance, is in black and white.
complrments is misspelled in the text
The text didn't really have any cultural references that were noticeable.
Table of Contents
- Chapter 1: Design History
- Chapter 2: Design Process
- Chapter 3: Design Elements, Design Principles, and Compostitional Organization
- Chapter 4: Colour Management in the Graphic Technologies
- Chapter 5: Pre-Press
- Chapter 6: Imaging
- Chapter 7: Web2Print
About the Book
This textbook -- written by a group of select experts with a focus on different aspects of the design process, from creation to production -- addresses the many steps of creating and then producing physical, printed, or other imaged products that people interact with on a daily basis. It covers the concept that, while most modern graphic design is created on computers using design software, the ideas and concepts don't stay on the computer. The ideas need to be completed in the computer software, then progress to an imaging (traditionally referred to as printing) process. Keywords are highlighted throughout and summarized in a Glossary at the end of the book, and each chapter includes exercises and suggested readings.
About the Contributors
Wayne Collins completed his Bachelor of Arts in English Language Studies at the University of Regina while concurrently completing a traditional five-year trades apprenticeship in pre-press with the Graphic Arts Union. He moved to Vancouver in 1985 and worked at Zenith Graphics, first as a film stripper and camera operator, and later as a computer systems operator and manager. He moved to Creo in their formative years and helped champion their computer to plate systems across North America. Before starting the Graphic Communications Diploma Program at British Columbia Institute of Technology in 2006, Wayne managed the pre-press department at Hemlock Printers in Vancouver for 15 years.
Alex Haas is a multidisciplinary designer, illustrator, and artist. Her design practice encompasses art direction, typeface design, and image creation. She has a special fondness for book design. She has partnered with Canadian publishers, art galleries, artists, universities, furniture makers, filmmakers, First Nation educators and historians, musicians, the CBC and the National Film Board in her design projects. Alex studied illustration and art direction at the Alberta College of Art and Design, received her design degree in visual communication from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University, and her Master’s in Applied Art, media stream, from Emily Carr University. She has taught various aspects of design at Emily Carr University, Simon Fraser University, and British Columbia Institute of Technology for the past 18 years.
Ken Jeffery instructs in print technology and communication design for the Digital Arts Department at British Columbia Institute of Technology. He holds a Master’s of Arts in Learning and Technology from Royal Roads University, where he researched strategies for effectively implementing social media in the classroom. Prior to a move to the world of higher education, Ken spent over 18 years in the printed communications industry. Starting out composing hand-set type for letterpress, he moved quickly to adopt digital design and web2print workflows. As a business owner working on all aspects of business from sales and marketing to production and fulfillment, he brings hands-on experience to today’s modern classroom, and he is eager to share his experience with the next generation of visual communicators.
Alan Martin has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in printmaking from the University of Victoria. He has been involved professionally in the graphic arts since 1977, first in traditional film assembly and then in electronic pre-press from its early days in the 1980s onward. For the past 11 years he has worked for Kodak, supporting their pre-press workflow products. Alan is currently product support manager for the InSite family of web-based review applications. He teaches several courses at British Columbia Institute of Technology, including Colour Management Systems.
Roberto Medeiros is a production print solution engineer with Ricoh Canada. His career in the copier and digital printing industry began in 1988 as a copier technician. In 2000, his role was transitioned to exclusively supporting colour and production print solutions. In 2012, Roberto joined the Graphic Communications Technology Program at British Columbia Institute of Technology as a part-time instructor teaching Advanced Digital Imaging. In 2015, he achieved his Idealliance Color Management Professional – Master certification.
Steven Tomljanovic has been recognized as a leader in web2print and variable data with over 15 years of experience in IT and almost 10 years of experience in the print industry. He was a part of the first graduating class of the British Columbia Institute of Technology GTEC printing program. Upon graduation, Steven helped companies build their online business presence with great success. He has been honoured with PrintAction magazine’s PA35, awarded to the top 35 industry leaders under the age of 35 in Canada. Steven shares his passion by teaching e-commerce, web2print, and web marketing courses at British Columbia Institute of Technology in the GTEC and New Media & Design Programs within the School of Business. Steven currently works as the web2print specialist at MET Fine Printers, located in Vancouver BC.