Imre Reiner: Grafika (1947)

Grafika: modern design for advertising and printing (1947)

19/09/11 – Selections from Imre Reiner’s Grafika: modern design for advertising and printing published in New York in 1947. English edition limited to 1000 copies. (more…)

Karl Gerstner: Kompendium für Alphabeten (1972)

Karl Gerstner: Kompendium für Alphabeten

15/08/11 – Excerpts from Swiss artist and designer Karl Gerstner’s Kompendium für Alphabeten published in 1972 by Verlag Niggli AG. (more…)

Books from 1960s Czechoslovakia: part 2

Czechoslovak books (1960s)

27/05/11 – Second installment of book covers, dust jackets, endpapers and title pages from Czechoslovakia circa 1960. (more…)

Books from 1960s Czechoslovakia: part 1

Czechoslovak book covers

20/05/11 – A selection of book covers, dust jackets, endpapers and title pages from Czechoslovakia circa 1960. (more…)

The Penguin Poets redesign by Jan Tschichold (1948)

penguin-poets-comp

15/12/10 – Two early examples of titles from the Penguin Poets series: (left) John Overton’s [?] original design of 1946 and (right) Jan Tschichold’s reformed design of 1951. (more…)

The Penguin Classics redesign by Jan Tschichold 1949

The Penguin Classics: 1945 & 1949

25/10/10 – Two early examples of titles from the Penguin Classics series: (left) John Overton’s original design of 1945 and (right) Jan Tschichold’s reformed design of 1949. Both feature circular illustrations (roundels) by William Grimmond. (more…)

Jan Tschichold: Penguin composition rules (1947)

King Penguin standard (detail)

18/10/10 – One of the first tasks Jan Tschichold set upon himself after becoming head typographer for Penguin Books in 1947 was to create the Penguin composition rules, a document outlining the core typographic standards to be practiced across all Penguin publications. (more…)

Jan Tschichold’s redesign for Pelican Books 1949

pelican-compare2_500

11/10/10 – Two examples of early Pelican titles: (left) Edward Young’s original horizontal grid design of 1937 and (right) Jan Tschichold’s reformed design of 1949. (more…)

The Penguin Shakespeare redesign by Jan Tschichold 1949

The Penguin Shakespeare: 1947 & 1949

27/09/10 – The Penguin Shakespeare series: Edward Young’s [?] original design (1938) and Jan Tschichold’s revision (1949). (more…)

Penguin’s horizontal grid design and Tschichold’s reforms

Penguin Books: 1938 & 1958

31/08/10 – Two examples of early Penguin paperback covers: Edward Young’s horizontal grid of the 1930s and Jan Tschichold’s reformed design of the 1950s. (more…)

1960s & 1970s Scandinavian design logos: part 3

Scandinavian design logos 1960s & 1970s

19/04/10 – Third installment of 1960s & 1970s Scandinavian design logos on Flickr//. The collection features the logos and trademarks of furniture, textile, glass, ceramic and general housewares manufacturers. (more…)

Karl Gerstner: The forms of colour (1986)

gerstner-spread_1000

25/03/10 – In his book, The forms of colour, Karl Gerstner examines the complex interaction between colour and form and develops his own system: ‘The Colour Form Model.’ (more…)

Eric Gill: An essay on typography (1936)

Eric Gill An Essay on Typography

16/03/10 – A selection of excerpts from the second edition of Eric Gill’s An Essay on Typography (1936). Gill’s frequent use of the ampersand (&) retained throughout.

The Theme
Even if a man’s whole day be spent as a servant of an industrial concern, in his spare time he will make something, if only a window box flower garden. (i)

The application of these principles [i.e., the the industrial and the 'humane'] to the making of letters and the making of books is the special business of this book. (ii) (more…)

1960s & 1970s Scandinavian design logos: part 2

1960s & 1970s Scandinavian Design Logos

31/08/09 – Second installment of 1960s & 1970s Scandinavian design logos on flickr//. Includes logos from a variety of furniture and textile firms. (more…)

1960s & 1970s Scandinavian design logos: part 1

Scandinavian Design Logos
24/08/09 – First installment of a collection of Scandinavian design logos/logotypes circa 1960/70 on flickr//. Initial assortment strictly Danish furniture and textile firms. More to come from Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway. (more…)

Ladislav Sutnar: Design and paper, number 13 (1943)

Design and paper: number 13
17/07/09 – Selections from Design and paper number 13: controlled visual flow by Ladislav Sutnar, Marquardt and Co., New York (1943). (more…)

Ladislav Sutnar: Design and paper, number 19 (1945)

Design and paper: number 19

16/07/09 – Selections from Design and paper number 19: shape, line and colour by Ladislav Sutnar, Marquardt and Co., New York (1945).

Design and paper was a series of softcover booklets produced by New York paper wholesaler Marquardt and Co. between 1937 and 1952(?). Its production ran quarterly for 39 issues and was printed at a very high standard. The series showcased the finest papers for printers, art directors and others in the printing trade. After number 7, issues were primarily devoted to individual artists and designers. Ladislav Sutnar featured in numbers 13 and 19.

In issue 19, Sutnar gives a brief and illustrative lesson in the use of shape, line and colour for organizing and presenting information. Sutnar’s characteristic style is evident in the bold use of colour, dynamic spreads and organizational signposts.

Issue 19 colophon:
Cover: Crysteel Bristol – High Plate – 22.5 x 28.5 – 200M
Text: Dullbrite White – Substance 25 × 38–70
Plates by Royal-Jones Photo Engraving Corp.

Numbers 13 and 19 were accurately reproduced in 2003 from the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague// by Fraktály Publishers. (more…)

Karel Teige a typografie: asymetricka harmonie (2009)

28/06/09 – Monograph for Czech artist and designer, Karel Teige (1900-1951): Karel Teige a typografie: Asymetricka harmonie (2009) by Karel Srp, Polana Bregantova and Lenka Bydzovska. Text in Czech. (more…)

J. Hochuli: Detail in Typography

Jost Hochuli: Detail in Typography

18/05/09 – Excerpts from Jost Hochuli’s Detail in Typography: Letters, letterspacing, words, wordspacing, lines, linespacing, columns (2008): (more…)

Typographic Study: Square with 3×3 Grid [Ex. AH-25]

Fig. AH-25-2.1a

14/04/09 – Formal typographic study of the square with 3×3 grid and variations in ratio/proportion and orientation. (more…)

Oliver Tomas

  • Design historian and archivist based in Vancouver, Canada.
  • info[at]olivertomas[dot]com