The very first line of Adrian Shaughnessy’s new collection of essays reads: “Why would anyone want to read about graphic design?” It’s a bullish opening gambit to introduce 400 pages of graphic design writing, but of course the answer is fairly obvious – when it’s this darn good. Scratching the Surface is the latest release from the Unit Editions publishers and brings together articles from the past 18 years split up into sections including profiles, education, music and reviews as well as graphic design and illustration.
From pieces on Vaughan Oliver and Neville Brody to The Apprentice and the Royal Family, Adrian’s trademark sharp, erudite and witty style is present on every page and it’s not hard to see why he is widely considered one of the best design writers working today. His pieces are constructed in a way both designers and civilians can enjoy and engage with, reflecting his ongoing battle against the ghettoisation of the craft. It’s also – as one would expect – very well-designed with liberal use of hot pink and a good image section to contextualise some of his thoughts.
- Cornelius de Bill Baboul’s Peelosophies is toilet humour at its finest
- Director I Saw John First creates animated video for Jack Steadman’s solo project, Mr Jukes
- Carlín Díaz expands his practice to psychedelic paintings and animations
- Atelier Brenda: the alter ego of three female designers you need to get to know
- Artist Crys Yin adds comical elements to her simply-executed paintings
- Grilli Type designer Reto Moser shares the books that inspire him
- A new national identity: Smörgåsbord Studio rebrands Wales
- Graphic design gems: Chicago gang business cards from the 1970s and 80s
- Photographer Dougie Wallace captures the super rich spenders of “Harrodsburg”
- “Romance in a sort-of fantasy world”: photographer Molly Matalon's new work (some NSFW)
- Studio Michael Satter’s sophisticatedly simple graphic design portfolio
- Harry Pearce and Pentagram create a new identity for Pink Floyd’s record label