Mike T. Henderson

Design, Art Direction & Illustration

What I’m Reading: The Vignelli Canon

 In Reading

This week I finished reading The Vignelli Canon, a short collection of design advice from Italian modernist designer, Massimo Vignelli. As one might guess, it’s a beautifully designed book with a minimalistic aesthetic. It’s a short book at 112 pages, but packed with invaluable design advice.

Vignelli had an elegant ability to break a design problem down to it’s most basic form to output a simplistically intelligent result. Vignelli was the mentor of Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, another designer whose work I have been influenced by. As I read in the book Steal Like An Artist, The Author, Austin Kleon suggests that you should learn about the people that influenced the people that influence you. Some solid advice.

The Vignelli Canon is a classic collector book, and looks good as a trophy of design knowledge on any bookshelf.

From Amazon:

The famous Italian designer Massimo Vignelli allows us a glimpse of his understanding of good design in this book, its rules and criteria. He uses numerous examples to convey applications in practice – from product design via signaletics and graphic design to Corporate Design. By doing this he is making an important manual available to young designers that in its clarity both in terms of subject matter and visually is entirely committed to Vignelli’s modern design.

Purchase on Amazon

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