Wednesday film: Chip Kidd on design clarity and mystery

12 Aug

When I came across this TED talk from Chip Kidd today, I thought about how it relates to my recent post about ebooks.  You see, much of Kidd’s talk is about designing book covers. He discusses how he came up with the concept for the cover of Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki by Haruki Murakami, a book that I have waiting on my Kindle, and I was struck by two things: how much of his design intent I miss by experiencing the cover in that medium, and how important it is that covers are now made to be meaningful at icon size as well. That’s been true as long as online bookstores have existed, but now they are navigational elements on our reading devices as well as tiny ads.

1 Comment

Posted by on August 12, 2015 in Side Topics, Video


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One response to “Wednesday film: Chip Kidd on design clarity and mystery

  1. mothermi6

    August 13, 2015 at 4:49 am

    The first thing that struck me about this (excellent) talk was that the quality of the speaker’s style was a metaphor for his ability as a designer: those perfectly-co-ordinated clothes, with even one tie stripe an exact match for his spectacle frames. (When looking for blog photos I frequently search ‘metaphor and symbol’ categories.)
    Book covers are – in and of themselves – a great attraction (or otherwise) for a work. When I examine book recommendations on, it is the cover designs I linger over. I don’t have a Kindle (partly due to income – low – partly due to prejudice/fear, and partly due to the human need for an immediacy of colour, scent and texture.) The technology/human interface, for me, constitutes a partial barrier to sensory impact.
    My blog template is free, so there is a limit to what I can do on it, but I did recently change the font (you now can on a free site) and have increased my proficiency with image uploads. I find that, if I am motivated enough, I can just about get over my fear of button-pressing!
    Thanks for the challenges. E


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