The Art of Looking Sideways

The Art of Looking Sideways

by Alan Fletcher


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" The Art of Looking Sideways is a primer in visual intelligence, an exploration of the workings of the eye, the hand, the brain and the imagination. It is an inexhaustible mine of anecdotes, quotations, images, curious facts and useless information, oddities, serious science, jokes and memories, all concerned with the interplay between the verbal and the visual, and the limitless resources of the human mind. Loosely arranged in 72 chapters, all this material is presented in a wonderfully inventive series of pages that are themselves masterly demonstrations of the expressive use of type, space, color and imagery.

This book does not set out to teach lessons, but it is full of wisdom and insight collected from all over the world. Describing himself as a visual jackdaw, master designer Alan Fletcher has distilled a lifetime of experience and reflection into a brilliantly witty and inimitable exploration of such subjects as perception, color, pattern, proportion, paradox, illusion, language, alphabets, words, letters, ideas, creativity, culture, style, aesthetics and value.

The Art of Looking Sideways is the ultimate guide to visual awareness, a magical compilation that will entertain and inspire all those who enjoy the interplay between word and image, and who relish the odd and the unexpected.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780714834498
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Publication date: 08/30/2001
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 1064
Product dimensions: 8.62(w) x 9.87(h) x 2.25(d)
Age Range: 13 - 18 Years

About the Author

"Alan Fletcher belongs to that elite international group of designers who have transcended the conventional boundaries of their craft. He is a founder member of the design group Pentagram, with whom he has stayed for 20 years. He now works independently from his own studio in London. He is consultant Art Director to Phaidon Press.


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Art of Looking Sideways 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Steve55 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is simply an astonishing book that I suggest you should savour. In a sense I feel that there is little more to say than to advise you to obtain a copy.This may not feel like much of a review, and for the left brained reader requiring logic with which to justify their purchase, I will try to oblige, superfluous though this feels.This is a large book with over 500 large format pages. It is described by 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 `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 through reviews of the book on Amazon, all 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 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.It¿s not simply a book that I can¿t stop dipping into, I can¿t stop smiling at the fact that Alan Fletcher took the time, care and attention to detail to share it with me. It is quite simply a pleasure to hold.If you obtain a copy I recommend a pack of post-it notes to catalogue the innumerable pages you will want to return to.
Katya0133 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is one of my favorite books but it's very hard to describe. Overall, it's about design, but it's also equal parts biography, philosophy, and quote book. If you love design and pick it up, you'll have a hard time putting it back down again.
janemarieprice on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a great and inspirational design book. It has some beautiful designs and interesting essays. It is something you can look at from time to time but not something you can sit down with for a long period.
joeltallman on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Something interesting on almost every page. And it's got lots of pages, too.
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iansummers More than 1 year ago
Fletcher is an excellent example of the eclectic interests of a designer. In this huge volume, he vacuum cleans the universe for ideas. He synthesizes ideas and turns them into something new. This book occupies a special place on my bookshelf. I quote from it from time-to-time on my blog.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
For those of you looking to read something truly witty and intelligent. Read this! Full of wisdom, worldly ideas, theories and artful suprises. This book is a conversational gem. Read it for yourself, buy it as a precious gift. Learn, laugh, think and above all-enjoy!