The Essence of Graphic Design by Rachel Benyon

To me, Graphic Design, or rather design in general, is the ability to see beauty in the mundane, to notice things perhaps most people wouldn’t. I think it’s also the ability to simplify, clarify and communicate. If it’s well designed it should almost go un-noticed: they say that bad design stands out and great design is invisible.

Speaking more specifically about Graphic Design, it is the Graphic Designers’ job to communicate, to visually lay out type/images in a way that the viewer has to do as little work as possible to understand the information presented. Such aspects include type hierarchy, font choice, font size, colours, composition, etc. Graphic design is important because it provides structure, sophistication and a clear message.

Penguin Book Cover, Jan Tshichold

Here you can see some of my personal favourite pieces of design–there’s a real mixture of things–the first two are some great examples of timeless pieces of design by famous graphic designers, the third is a collection of french lettering I came across

Josef Muller Brockmann

One of my favourite pieces of design is the Penguin book cover created by German designer and typographer, Jan Tshichold. His notorious attention to detail and strict standards are strikingly apparent. Collectively, the Penguin books have a consistent look and feel, one of Tshichold’s main goals when creating them. He created the Penguin Composition Rules, a standardized set of typographic rules.

The second piece of design I’ve chosen is a poster by swiss designer Josef Muller Brockmann. Similar to Tshichold’s timeless book covers, Brockmann’s attention to detail is immense. The use of a logical structure is always employed in his work and every element in his work has a reason for its size, and position.

The third design I’ve chosen is a (collection of) old french typefaces. I love to find inspiration in unusual places as well as inspiration taken from famous designers’ work. The colour palette used in these images is great–they are so organic and would provide a great palette to swatch colours from.

French Typefaces

Finally, I’ve chosen a piece of design totally different from the rest – British road signs. I’ve chosen it because it’s a great example of problem-solving design. The planning of Britain’s first motorway instigated a need for change in the existing road sign system. The font used, Transport, created by Jock Kinneir and Margaret Calvert, was specifically for use on road signs. Font style, size, kerning, tracking etc was all very carefully considered to create maximum legibility.

Road Sign

In future, I’ll be bringing you more articles on anything and everything to do with the world of graphic design so be sure to tune in! If you wish to know more about myself and my passion for the subject, click here to see my recent interview with Business Boom Bolton!

Business Boom Bolton are looking for guest writers to regularly feature and provide their own opinions on their chosen hobby or career. Features can be on any topic related to the creative industries, i.e. from photography and film production to art, illustration, design and more. If you are interested in becoming a guest writer for us, get in touch with us via our contact page!

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