Building a Library of Design Resources
The key points from this assignment.
- Start building a modest library of design books
- Be guided by your interests and goals
- Use the recommendations in this assignment as a starting point
Image credit: Karolina Grabowska
Design has a rich history, and we do well to immerse ourselves in the wisdom of those who’ve mastered design before us.
It’s a good idea to begin building a modest library of books about design. They’re great for reference when you’re researching how others have tackled design problems, and having them visible on your bookshelf can also inspire you to keep going when you feel stuck.
How you begin building your library is up to you, and it will depend on your goals for the course, what area of design you’re particularly interested in, and how much money you want to spend.
Check out our list of recommendations below, and start putting together your own stack of resources!
- Graphic Design Visionaries by Caroline Roberts
- Visual Grammar by Christian Leborg
- Graphic: 500 Designs that Matter by Phaidon
- Thinking With Type by Ellen Lupton (free online)
- The Visual History of Type by Paul McNeil
- Making and Breaking the Grid by Timothy Samara (2nd edition)
Digital Product Design (also known as UX/UI Design)
- The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman (Revised edition)
- Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug
- Hooked: How To Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal
- Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All by David Kelley and Tom Kelley
- Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation by Tim Brown (Revised edition)
- Sprint: How To Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days by Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, et al.
Design Ethics and Design Manifestos
- The Shape of Design by Frank Chimero (free online)
- Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do to Fix It by Mike Monteiro
- Less But Better by Dieter Rams
Focus and Productivity
- Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport
- The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller
- Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain
Other useful books
As you move through the course, you might also want to refer to our further resources page — but be careful not to go down too many rabbit holes.
Up next is another icebreaker exercise. It’s time to describe your idea of design!
Assignment version 1.0
Last updated 7 June 2021