I read A LOT. While it’s not all industry related texts, it is mostly those. And since they’ve been a point of discussion rather often as of late, I thought I’d share a pretty massive list of books worth reading for the curious creative and the adventurous artist. This list is not only books that I’ve read/own, but also books on my own wishlist to make a part of my journey. Perhaps some of them will be a part of yours as well. I’ll try to bold or in some other way call out some mainstays that really every designer should have in their arsenal (in my humble opinion).

 

  • Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality – Scott Belsky
  • Typography Workbook: A Real-World Guide to Using Type in Graphic Design – Timothy Samara
  • Creative Workshop: 80 Challenges to Sharpen Your Design Skills – David Sherwin
  • Logo Design Love: A Guide to Creating Iconic Brand Identities – David Airey
  • Anatomy for the Artist – Sarah Simblet and John Davis
  • Abduzeedo Inspiration Gide for Designers (Voices That Matter) – Fabio Sasso
  • New Vintage Type: Classic Fonts for the Digital Age – Steven Heller
  • Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team
  • The Brand Gap: How to Bridge the Distance Between Business Strategy and Design – Marty Neumeier
  • Creative Advertising, New Edition – Mario Pricken
  • Ogilvy on Advertising – David Ogilvy
  • Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines – Graphic Artists Guild
  • Graphic Design: A New History – Stephen Eskilson
  • LogoLounge 1 – 6 – Various Authors (changes every few volumes)
  • The Best of Brochure Design 11 – Kiki Eldridge
  • Box Bottle Bag: The World’s Best Package Designs from TheDieline.com – Andrew Gibbs
  • Things I Have Learned in My Life So Far – Daniel Nettle
  • Sagmeister: Made You Look – Peter Hall
  • The End of Print: The Grafik Design of David Carson – Lewis Blackwell
  • The Architecture of Patterns – Paul Andersen
  • The Vignelli Canon – Massimo Vignelli
  • Vignelli From A to Z – Massimo Vignelli
  • Paul Rand – Paul Rand
  • Paul Rand: A Designer’s Art – Paul Rand
  • Sparkle and Spin: A Book About Words – Paul Rand
  • Saul Bass: A Life in Film and Design – Pat Kirkham
  • Pocket Pal: A Graphic Arts Production Handbook – Frank Romano
  • Lella and Massimo Vignelli (Design is One) – Images Publishing Group
  • Symbol – Angus Hyland
  • Helvetica: Homage to a Typeface – Lars Müller
  • Helvetica Forever: Story of a Typeface – Victor Malsy
  • Logo – Michael Evamy
  • Data Flow: Visualizing Information in Graphic Design – Robert Klanten
  • Design Is…Words, Things, People, Buildings, and Places at Metropolis – David Carson
  • Posters for the People – Ennis Carter
  • Vintage Type and Graphics: An Eclectic Collection of Typography, Ornament, Letterheads, and Trademarks from 1896 to 1936 – Steven Heller
  • In The Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives – Steven Levy
  • Apple Design – Ina Gratz
  • The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less – Barry Schwartz
  • How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer – Debbie Millman
  • Brand Thinking and Other Noble Pursuits – Debbie Millman
  • Thinking With Type – Ellen Lupton
  • Design Elements: A Graphic Style Manual – Timothy Samara
  • Graphic Design, Referenced: A Visual Guide to the Language, Applications, and History of Graphic Design – Bryony Gomez-Palacio
  • Layout Workbook: A Real-World Guide to Building Pages in Graphic Design – Kristin Cullen
  • Fingerprint No.2: The Evolution of Handmade Elements in Graphic Design – Chen Design Associates
  • Custom Lettering of the 60’s & 70’s – Rian Hughes
  • Graphic: Inside the Sketchbooks of the World’s Greatest Graphic Designers – Steven Heller
  • Type: A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles, Vol. 1
  • Vintage Commercial Art and Design – Frank H. Atkinson
  • Modern Dog: 20 Years of Poster Art – Michael Strassburger
  • Graphic Design Theory: Readings from the Field – Helen Armstrong
  • Graphic Design: The New Basics – Jennifer C. Phillips
  • Handwritten: Expressive Lettering in the Digital Age – Steven Heller
  • Grid Systems: Principles of Organizing Type – Kimberly Elam
  • Making and Breaking the Grid: A Graphic Design Layout Workshop – Timothy Samara
  • The Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage – Roger L. Martin
  • Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation – Tim Brown
  • Design Thinking: Integrating Innovation, Customer Experience, and Brand Value – Thomas Lockwood
  • The Designful Company: How to Build a Culture of Nonstop Innovation
  • Zag: The Number One Strategy of High-Performance Brands – Marty Neumeier
  • Japanese Design Motifs: 4,260 Illustrations of Japanese Crests – Matsuya Piece-Goods Store
  • Pattern Sourcebook: Nature 2: 250 Patterns for Projects and Designs – Shigeki Nakamura
  • Patterns – Macarena San Martin
  • Print & Pattern 2 – Bowie Style
  • Print & Pattern – Bowie Style
  • Naive: Modernism and Folklore in Contemporary Graphic Design – R. Klanten
  • Meggs’ History of Graphic Design – Philip B. Meggs and Alston W. Purvis
  • The Elements of Typographic Style – Robert Bringhurst
  • The Designer’s Guide to Marketing and Pricing: How to Win Clients and What to Charge Them – Illise Benun
  • 2012 Artist’s & Graphic Designer’s Market – Mary Burzlaff Bostic
  • 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People – Susan M. Weinschenk
  • Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks for Designers – Corey Barker
  • Designers Don’t Have Influences – Austin Howe
  • Designers Don’t Read – Austin Howe
  • Trek: David Carson, Recent Werk – David Carson and Jamie Brisick
  • David Carson 2ndsight: Grafik Design after the End of Print – Lewis Blackwell
  • David Carson: Fotografiks: An Equilibrium Between Photography and Design Through Graphic Expression That Evolves from Content – Philip B. Meggs and David Carson
  • Taken by Storm – Storm Thorgerson
  • Art of the Modern Movie Poster: International Postwar Style and Design – Jutka Salavetz
  • Semiology of Graphics: Diagrams, Networks, Maps – Jacques Bertin
  • Pantone’s Guide to Communicating with Color – Leatrice Eiseman
  • The Designer’s Ultimate Index (Design Basics Index, Color Index, Color Index2, Design Essentials Index, Type Idea Index, Photo Idea Index) – Jim Krause
  • Masters of Design: Corporate Brochures: A Collection of the Most Inspiring Corporate Communications Designers in the World – Sean Adams
  • Really Good Packaging Explained: Top Design Professionals Critique 300 Package Designs and Explain What Makes Them Work – Marianne Rosner Klimchuk
  • The Graphic Designer’s Electronic-Media Manual: How to Apply Visual Design Principles to Engage Users on Desktop, Tablet, and Mobile Websites – Jason Tselentis
  • The Best of Letterhead and Logo Design – Rockport Publishers
  • I Heart Design: Remarkable Graphic Design Selected by Designers, Illustrators, and Critics – Steven Heller
  • Typosphere: New Fonts to Make You Think – Marta Serrats and Pilar Cano
  • Typography, Referenced: A Comprehensive Visual Guide to the Language, History, and Practice of Typography – Jason Tselentis
  • Design Matters: An Essential Primer-Brochures, Logos, Packaging, Portfolios – Maura Keller
  • 365 Habits of Successful Graphic Designers: Insider Secrets from Top Designers on Working Smart and Staying Creative – Laurel Saville
  • 1,000 Graphic Elements: Special Details for Distinctive Designs – Wilson Harvey
  • Design Elements, Form & Space: A Graphic Style Manual for Understanding Structure and Design – Dennis Puhalia
  • Design Matters: Portfolios 01: An Essential Primer for Today’s Competitive Market – Maura Keller
  • Graphic Design That Works: Secrets for Successful Logo, Magazine, Brochure, Promotion, and Identity Design – Cheryl Dangel Cullen
  • Colour Mania – Victionary
  • Package Design Workbook: The Art and Science of Successful Packaging – Kai Braue
  • Letterhead and Logo Design 12 – Oxide Design Co.
  • The Design of Dissent: Socially and Politically Driven Graphics – Milton Glaser
  • 1,000 More Graphic Elements: Unique elements for Distinctive Designs – Grant Design Collaborative
  • Brand Atlas: Branding Intelligence Made Visible – Alina Wheeler
  • The Graphic Design Exercise Book – Carolyn Knight
  • Caffeine for the Creative Mind: 250 Exercises to Wake Up Your Brain – Stefan Mumaw
  • Caffeine for the Creative Team: 150 Exercises to Inspire Group Innovation – Stefan Mumaw and Wendy Lee
  • Logo, Font & Lettering Bible – Leslie Cabarga
  • Above the Fold: Understanding the Principles of Successful Web Site Design – Brian Miller Ed. D
  • The Secret Life of Logos: Behind the Design of 80 Great Logos – Leslie Cabarga
  • Logo Design Vol. 3 – Julius Wiedemann
  • The Creative Business Guide to Running a Graphic Design Business – Cameron S. Foote
  • 100 Habits of Successful Freelance Designers: Inside Secrets for Working Smart & Staying Creative – Steven Gordon Jr.
  • Brand Identity Essentials: 100 Principles for Designing Logos and Building Brands – Kevin Budelmann
  • How to be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul – Adrian Shaughnessy
  • Art Direction Explained, At Last! – Steven Heller and Veronique Vienne
  • Life Kerning: Creative Ways to Fine Tune Your Perspective on Career and Life – Justin Ahrens
  • Just My Type: A Book About Fonts – Simon Garfield
  • Illusive: Contemporary Illustration – Robert Klanten
  • Illusive 2: Contemporary Illustration and Its Context – Robert Klanten
  • Mixing Messages – Ellen Lupton
  • The ABC’s of Bauhaus, The Bauhaus and Design Theory – Ellen Lupton
  • Indie Publishing: How to Design and Publish Your Own Book – Ellen Lupton
  • Design Your Life: The Pleasures and Perils of Everyday Things – Ellen Lupton
  • Idea-ology: The Designer’s Journey: Turning Ideas into Inspired Designs – Stanley Hainsworth
  • Brand Bible: The Complete Guide to Building, Designing, and Sustaining Brands – Debbie Millman
  • The Best of Letterhead and Logo Design – Mine Design
  • no Rules! Logos: Radical Design Solutions That Break the Rules – John Stones
  • The Best of Business Card Design 6 – Blackcoffee Design, Inc.
  • The Art of Looking Sideways – Alan Fletcher
  • Threadless: Ten Years of T-shirts from the World’s Most Inspiring Online Design Community – Jake Nickell
  • Forms, Folds, and Sizes, Second Edition: All the Details Graphic Designers Need to Know but Can Never Find – Poppy Evans
  • Identity Crisis: 50 Redesigns That Transformed Stale Identities Into Successful Brands – Jeff Fisher
  • From Design Into Print: Preparing Graphics and Text for Professional Printing – Sandee Cohen
  • Graphic Designer’s Color Handbook: Choosing and Using Color from Concept to Final Output – Barb Karg and Rick Sutherland
  • Logo Savvy: Top Brand Design Firms Share their Naming and Identity Strategies – Perry Chua
  • Do Good Design: How Designers Can Change the World – David B. Berman
  • Glitch: Designing Imperfection – Christopher Murphy
  • Where We Work: Creative Office Spaces – Ian McCallam
  • Graphic Design: A User’s Manual – Adrian Shaughnessy
  • Looking Closer (1-5): Critical Writings on Graphic Design – Michael Bierut
  • Studio Culture: The Secret Life of a Graphic Design Studio – Tony Brook
  • Thinking in Type: The Practical Philosophy of Typography – Alex White
  • Designing Magazines – Jandos Rothstein
  • Art Direction and Editorial Design – Yolanda Zappaterra
  • Editing by Design: For Designers, Art Directors, and Editors—the Classic Guide to Winning Readers – Jan V. White
  • A Guide to Graphic Print Production – Kaj Johansson
  • Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping—Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond – Paco Underhill
  • Talent is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers – Shel Perkins
  • Business and Legal Forms for Graphic Designers – Tad Crawford
  • This is Service Design Thinking: Basics, Tools, Cases – Marc Stickdorn
  • Sagmeister: Another Book About Promotion and Sales Material – Chantal Prod’Horn
  • Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative – Austin Kleon
  • Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team – Alina Wheeler
  • It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be: The World’s Best Selling Book – Paul Arden
  • Work For Money, Design For Love: Answers to the Most Frequently Asked Questions About Starting and RUnning a Successful Design Business – David Airey
  • 100 Ideas That Changed Graphic Design – Steven Heller
  • Information Graphics – Sandra Rendgen
  • The Book of Probes – Marshall McLuhan
  • The Art of the LP: Classic Album Covers 1955 – 1995 – Johnny Morgan
  • Visual Complexity: Mapping Patterns of Information – Manuel Lima
  • War Posters: Weapons of Mass Communication – James Aulich
  • Barbara Kruger – Barbara Kruger
  • Art of Modern Rock: The Poster Explosion – Paul Grushkin
  • A Smile in the Mind – Beryl McAlhone
  • Dada: Art and Anti-Art – Hans Richter
  • Type Matters! – Jim Williams
  • Design as Art – Bruno Munari
  • Naoto Fukasawa – Naoto Fukasawa
  • Designing Design – Kenya Hara
  • Design Disasters: Great Designers, Fabulous Failures, and Lessons Learned – Steven Heller
  • Less and More: The Design Ethos of Dieter Rams – Klaus Klemp
  • Management and Creativity: From Creative Industries to Creative Management – Chris Bolton
  • HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites – Jon Duckett
  • In Search of the Miraculous: Or, One Thing Leads to Another – Milton Glaser
  • Art is Work – Milton Glaser
  • Milton Glaser: Graphic Design – Milton Glaser
  • Nobody’s Perfect: Bill Bernbach and the Golden Age of Advertising – Doris Willens
  • Graphic Design Basics, 6th Edition – Amy E. Arnston
  • Design Basics – David A. Lauer and Stephen Pentak