Food for thought‘[...] do not think that good design can make a poor product good, whether the product be a machine, a building, a promotional brochure or a business man. But [...] good design can materially help make a good product reach its full potential. In short, [...] good design is good business.’
Thomas J. Watson Jr., IBM CEO

A book cover for La Fontaine’s Fables from the 50s

February 27, 2011, 9:10 PM

While I was a kid, and well into my teenage years, I would spend summers at my grandparents’, far into the north of Transylvania, ‘bookworming’ through their large library, trying to beat my own reading records. As my grandmother is half German, half Hungarian and my grandfather is Romanian (mother side), their library was — and still is — packed with Romanian, Hungarian and Russian (because of the long comunist regime) books. Luckily, some of them were translated in Romanian, as I didn’t know the other languages (too young to catch Russian hours in school, not long enough with my grandparents to pick up proper Hungarian from them). Anyway, it was a wonderful thing to be able to read literature from such different countries. Most of the books were from the 50s and the 60s, when my mother and her brothers were kids, but some were even older — grandpa had a large old chest in the attic with books from his teenage years — such a joy to browse through.

Unfortunately, I only have a few photos of them, but here is one that always fascinated me: La Fontaine’s Fables. It wasn’t among my favourite reads, but its illustrations and typography were always a pleasure to look at:

Oh, I don’t think I need to tell you that all those books smelled wonderful, do I? :)



“Voyages Extraordinaires”—16th theme from Design Challenge

December 21, 2009, 8:02 PM

The 16th theme for the periodical Design Challenge was a series of covers for Jules Verne books. The mandatories demanded the design of three jackets, hinting the graphic style for the entire series (54 in total).

Here are my designs:

You can also check out Ciprian’s wonderful solution here.

Design Challenge is a group of creative people that test their wits and talents on periodically-given themes (usually on a two-weeks basis). The themes are given by rotation and are based on less comercial topics like book covers, movie posters, music covers and others (most of us work as brand designers so we try to challenge ourselves with something different from what we do every day).