Robin Williams Design Workshop

"Includes Design And Typographic Principles "

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type of book

Title:Robin Williams Design Workshop
coverAuthor: Robin Williams and John Tollett
Publisher: Peachpit Press
Publication Date: October 2000
Pages: 280
ISBN: 0-201-70088-3
Price: $39.99

Robin Williams Design Workshop is your own personal guide to style. It describes practical graphic design principles and concepts, and how to apply them to projects. In the book, the authors explain why some designs are more likely to attract attention, and which looks are suitable for specific types of projects, such as business cards, letterhead, brochures, logos, and other advertising. It is full of color design examples, advice, and lessons in composition, visual impact, and design challenges. Robin Williams is well-known for her Non-Designer's book series in which she introduced design and typographic principles to legions of readers. Now with co-author with designer, John Tollett, they take you to the next level of creative design with this well-written, visually impressive design book.
user level
Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced computer users. This book is designed for all computer users.

Robin Williams Design Workshop is divided into four main sections with individual chapters within each section.

Section I: Idea Sparks--ideas to get you thinking about design.

Chapter 1: How Much Do You Already Know--quizzes readers on mostly technical, basic details of design (like dpi).

Chapter 2: Taking Advantage of Clip Art--discusses clip art: what it is; its many forms; different file formats; and how to use clip art to juice up your work, create logos, inspire new ideas, or tie a theme together.

Chapter 3: Working with Photographs--provides information on using photographs in your designs: use photographs to add interest to a design and emphasis to a message; dramatic cropping; interesting filters; or special digital effects; and basic guidelines for planning your photographs.

Chapter 4: Understanding Design Challenges and Approaches--covers how to turn "design problems" into "design challenges;" design limitations and restrictions; budget; client specifications; deadlines; and choosing a look.

Chapter 5: Creating Visual Impact--discusses how to get your reader's attention and create a memorable visual impression; contrast of size, color, direction; and contrast of the expected versus the unexpected.

Section II: Projects--information on specific projects.

Chapter 6: Logos--covers choosing a unique personality for your logo; and common techniques and themes of logo design.

Chapter 7: Business Cards, Letterhead, and Envelopes--looks at designing a cohesive business package for a business that includes: business card, letterhead and matching envelope.

Chapter 8: Invoices and Forms--delves into important information on creating good, usable, clear, and clean forms; avoid problems such as spaces too small to write in, disorganization, and difficulty discerning which parts are pertinent to you; and learn to use your software really well so you can create features like "paragraph rules" so they appear where you want them.

Chapter 9: Advertising--provides information on advertising, copywriting, marketing, and sales; black-and-white ads; and color ads.

Chapter 10: Billboards--discusses different types of billboards--poster panel and bulletins; avoiding the outdoor brochure look; and visual impact outdoors.

Chapter 11: Websites--looks at the process involved in creating attractive Web sites; avoiding the boxy look; and what software to use.

Chapter 12: Tables of Content and Indices--gives you information on creating Tables of Content for books, magazines, newsletters, and other publications.

Chapter 13: Newsletters and Brochures--discusses the challenge of working with a lot of text and seamlessly integrating images into the text; newsletter flags; mastheads; and brochures.

Chapter 14: Flyers--delves into how to use flyers for advertising; and how to use contrast, visual impact, and simplicity to get noticed.

Section III: Designers & The Design Process--This section shows you the work of other designers so you can learn from their processes. The differences between designers, the way they work, and their styles is very interesting, but so are the similarities.

John Tollett, Book Cover--looks into the process of creating a book cover.

Maggie Macnab, Logos and Symbols--offers ideas on logo and symbol design.

Fred Cisneros, Promotional Materials--provides information on promotional materials such as direct mail packages.

Dave Rohr, Websites--discusses Web design.

Carmet Sheldon, Students' Projects--looks at students' projects.

Paul Shaw, Typography--discusses typography and CD cover.

Jason Halstead, Collateral Material--provides information on collateral material.

Section IV: Extras

Fonts Used in Book--list of fonts used.

Vendors Used in Book--list of vendors used.

personal comments
Robin Williams Design Workshop is a visually appealing book filled with illustrations, ideas, tips, and tricks. It is great for anyone creating flyers, newsletters, pamphlets, and advertisements and need to know how to get the best results. It doesn't talk down to beginners but gives you the information in a straightforward manner you can use.
Graphics: Adobe Illustrator & Adobe Photoshop
Web Page Editor: Macromedia Dreamweaver 4
Scanner: Hewlett Packard ScanJet 6250C Professional Series

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