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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 25 September 2014
Despite having only ninety-six pages and using a grid that uses about three-quarters of each page (and not forgetting the text in a large point size) this can be a useful book for a designer new to publication grids. Hurlburt was a great Art Director who elevated the every two weeks Look magazine into a must-see for designers. His books always looked beautifully designed but I always thought they were rather lightweight in content -- like this grid book.

The contents look at the use of grids in newspapers, magazines and books but there really aren't too many examples shown and nowhere is there a page or spread from a publication with a grid laid on top to show exactly how the grid helps create the page design. On page fifty-eight there is a whole page illustration of a grid for the German magazine 'twen' which would be much more informative if it was laid over an actual 'twen' page showing how the headlines, columns of type and pictures conform to the grid. It's slightly annoying that most of the grids in the book are in sort of muddy mid-brown panels with black lines for the columns.

The lack of thoroughness in Hurlburt's book is really brought home if you look through Josef Muller-Brockmann's suburb book about grids Grid Systems in Graphic Design: A Handbook for Graphic Artists, Typographers, and Exhibition Designers. Here you'll find page after page of detailed information about the subject: grid construction; type faces and sizes; the use of images. Consideration is also given to using grids with posters, all kinds of printed matter and exhibition design.

Hurlburts book is lovely to look at but there is no comparison with Grid systems by Muller-Brockmann.

I bought a paperback copy of this book recently but it was a print-on-demand inkjet copy which I thought was very poor because it's black only so that the mid-brown second colour in the original hardback is reproduced as grey. The reproductions in the original were not that good to start with and made worse in the inkjet copy. I think it's worth looking around the net for the original hardback copies from Van Nostrand (1978) or this copy from Barrie & Jenkins (1979). My inkjet reproduction copy is of a Wiley paperback published in 1982.
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on 22 April 2014
This book taught me more about the principles of design than any other that I have read. Love it recommend it
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