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The graphic design industry is expansive and voluminous in its history. It is a loosely categorized creative process that undertakes to convey a specific message to a targeted audience utilizing visual communication and presentation. Wrapping your arms around the history and breadth of the graphic design industry would be an intimidating proposal, that is until now. Studio 3, an Oslo based student-driven design agency has created A History of Graphic Design for Rainy Days which offers a comprehensive treatment of the graphic design world. It attempts to answer all the questions you always wanted to know about graphic design but were too afraid to ask.


The premise of the book is simple. One fateful rainy day, a bored kid asks his grandfather “what in the world is graphic design?” Using that simple and innocent question, A History of Graphic Design for Rainy Days takes its readers on a “charmingly illustrated and cleverly revealing whirlwind tour through this creative discipline’s milestone developments, personalities, and technologies.

Range of Subject Matter

The book utilizes a creative and engaging design to share funny narratives and enjoyable exercises to entertain and inform about many areas of graphic design. The journey starts in at the dawn of graphic design, during the beginning of the industrial revolution with the onset of typography all the way to the Internet-based font distribution of today. Graphic examples are shared of the first printed Christmas cards from the 1850’s up to David Carson‘s revolutionary layouts of the late 1980s. Graphic styles shared include art nouveau, Bauhaus, Dada, and psychedelic. Individual innovators such as William Morris, Saul Bass, Jan Tschichold, and Jessica Helfand are also covered for their important contributions to graphic design’s development.


For under $20, A History of Graphic Design for Rainy Days is a wonderfully revealing and creative treatment of the history and influences behind today’s graphic design world. Within one book, you can find all the major influences and creative directions that graphic design has covered over the last century or more. Having a sense of where you have come from, gives the reader more tools on where they want to take their interests in graphic design in the future.The title is accepting pre-orders now but will be released on November 28, 2011.


In the meantime, those interested in topography can check out Studio 3’s best selling Hyperactivitypography from A to Z. The 192-page attractively designed children’s book gives a revealing look at the demanding topic of typography. Hyperactivitypography from A to Z is geared to educate children about typography through simple but enjoyable practical handbook examples. The book utilizes appealing illustrations, personal explanations, and entertaining exercises to explain common terms and useful details from the world of typography.

Hyperactivitypography from A to Z is accessible by those new to typography, but also has more advanced examples and information suitable for the experienced typographer to advance their skills while taking away some new ideas. The book uses a casual but insightful approach that doesn’t come off as haughty or aloof. The team at Studio 3 is particularly adept at dealing with youthful audiences, partially due to their close association with Oslo’s renowned Westerdals School of Communication.