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The Art of Looking Sideways (20-copy Tower) [Perfect Paperback]

Alan Fletcher
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Perfect Paperback
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press Ltd
  • ISBN-10: 0714852228
  • ISBN-13: 978-0714852225
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,337,967 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
59 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, thought-provoking and refreshing 3 April 2006
By denitu
Format:Hardcover
This book is Fletcher's unique and personal collection of visual imagery, design articles, factual and cultural curiosities, idea sketchpads - and more - collated and distilled into book form. The book's packaging and presentation is exquisite, while each page is a beautiful example in the use of colour, space, type and imagery.
The size and scope of this book is immense. As a visual design resource, it is an inspiring collection that can be opened at any page for new ideas or direction. Divided over 72 chapters with such diverse titles as "Synchronicity", "Perception" and "Space-Time", the thematic divisions give a helpful structure to this mass of visual and textual information.
To say that this is a large and diverse collection of illustrations or a sketchpad is inadequate and does not do this book justice. This book explores relationships between the word and image - how colour, space, type, and image work together to signify meaning - and present these relationships to the reader in interesting and challenging ways. What at first glance may seem an obvious message, takes on new meaning in a specific context. Fletcher expertly manipulates such contexts to challenge the reader's perception and accepted interpretations of everyday imagery. The reader is cleverly coerced into "looking sideways" at imagery and text. The result is an often suprising, sometimes humourous, yet always enlightening realisation that what we take for granted around us in everyday life has alternative meanings. If only we could learn how to shift our gaze and look differently at the world around us, we may learn something new.
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74 of 75 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Delight to Have and to Hold 12 Sep 2005
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is simply an astonishing book that is a joy to own.
This is a large book with over 500 large format pages. It is described by its author Alan Fletcher as the work of a visual Jackdaw to produce an exploration of the workings of the eye, the hand, the brain and the imagination.
As he describes it 'The book attempts to open windows to glimpse views rather than dissect the pictures on the wall. To look at things from unlikely angles.... The book has no thesis, is neither a whodunit or a how-to-do-it, has no beginning middle or end. It's a journey without a destination.... It is unlike most books, those that are concerned with the mechanics rather than the thoughts, with the match rather than the fire.'
The result is not a book to sit down and read sequentially from cover to cover, rather an environment of ideas and stimuli through which to journey, an exploration in which to become immersed.
Reading the other reviews, many seem to come from graphic designers, indeed the author is a renown graphic designer himself. The result is a book that is a delight to hold. The different paper types and textures, intriguing layouts and inviting formats mean that every page turned leads to new discoveries even before their content is examined. Its merits as an exemplar of the art of design are clear, but this is much more than a role model for designers.
It is a book that in infinite ways serves as a catalyst for thinking. It has a multifaceted ability to present aspects of the world in new ways, that defy you ever again seeing them the way you always have in the past.
Through the imaginative use of images and text, quotations, snippets of information, and a host of other approaches, this is a feast for the mind as well as the eye.
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141 of 144 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All the things people won't teach you 13 Oct 2001
Format:Hardcover
I found out that Oscar Wilde said that the things worth learning are not taught. Read this book and all the weird little things people can't explain will be brought to light. Such as how the symbol ? and ! came about. Lots of images that make you laugh and think (my dad collects lots of peculiar things and i showed him the page of a poster saying 'We buy junk and sell antiques' It made him laugh) This book is all about art (not portraits or paintings but observations) and perception of the world we live. Buy this book and you will learn a thousand different things, all useless but valuable to know, if you see what i mean. The author himself says he sought to learn the things no one could teach him. He certainly gives you an experience, if you are interested in anything peculiar or weird then give this book a whirl. You will gain an insight into a thousand minds in one book, a cool achievement. The book is tremendous value too...
Worth having just for fun quotes like "3 o'clock is too early and too late for anything you want to do" jean-paul sarte or "a person without imagination is like a tea-bag without hot water"
So go on on, add some hot water to your life...
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful book 13 Feb 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book is stunning - a visual exploration of how a designer's mind thinks. It's a must have for all creative thinkers and especially design students. Witty, full of fascinating snippets of information, you can dip in and out of it or sit and peruse it for hours. One of the best things I've bought for ages.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wonderful 14 Feb 2002
Format:Hardcover
this is one of the greatest books i have ever looked at (read is the wrong word). It is a scrapbook, but one that will never get boring.
not abook to read from cover to cover, but one to walk past, pick up, and learn from. you will always open it on a diffrent page, and always find something interessting.
great book
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars For design students only!
This book may prove interesting to students of design but with my general art interest it is not really relevant and boring visually. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mrs. S. Le Masurier
3.0 out of 5 stars Unsure
The book itself is huge and has a lot of images. however they have little or no relevance and in a lot of cases no definition. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Tanya.x
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful book
Utterly absorbing. This highly entertaining compilation of thoughts is just genius. Visually and mentally stimulating, it's a book anyone of almost any age could enjoy!
Published 7 months ago by jade
5.0 out of 5 stars A great collection
A must for any creative, this book is a great reference work that encourages us to look beyond the ordinary and see things from several different perspectives.
Published 8 months ago by terry symonds
5.0 out of 5 stars perfect
i would require better packaging. To be better wrapped and then better place in the box . Mine had a minor damage on the upper corner
Published 8 months ago by constantinos
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous, delightful, endlessly entertaining
Fletchers book is a delightful, slightly bizarre collection of the profound, funny, absurd, whimsical, wise. Read more
Published 11 months ago by bob
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good
The book was everything it said it would be, It offered insight into the Graphic Designers thought process. It's great to dip in and out of for inspiration.
Published 14 months ago by Jane Buckle
5.0 out of 5 stars book review
bought it for my wife to assist with her ongoing degree studies. just loves it and has opened up further areas of research
Published 15 months ago by dicktemplate
5.0 out of 5 stars The art of wow!
Amazing book. Really beautiful to read it gives a lot of inspiration! You should purchase this book. A really great purchase!
Published 15 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars Graphic book
Excellent book with lots of quotes and ideas for students of graphics to use. Very unusual and quirky collection of information and images to use as starting points for projects.
Published 17 months ago by Mrs H
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