15+ Best Graphic Design Books in 2022

15+ Best Graphic Design Books in 2022

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Graphic design has long been part of our daily lives. Today it is impossible to imagine a successful brand that does not have its own face created by designers. The need for specialists is not decreasing: if you have ever wanted to try yourself in the field, now is the time to give it a try.

In this article, we have compiled a selection of the best books for graphic designers in 2022: it would be impossible to fit all the books worthy of attention into one article.

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There is a lot of specialized literature on the markets, but we have selected the most interesting ones, many that don’t make it on to other best graphic design books compilations.

15+ Best Graphic Design Books in 2022

  1. Grid Systems in Graphic Design
  2. Design is a Job
  3. A New Program for Graphic Design
  4. Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered
  5. Thinkertoys
  6. Steal Like an Artist
  7. The New Typography; A Handbook for Modern Designers
  8. Sketchnote Handbook, The: the illustrated guide to visual note taking
  9. Typographie: A Manual for Design
  10. The Art of Color
  11. Interaction of Color
  12. The Psychology of Graphic Design Pricing 
  13. Graphic Design: Second Edition, Revised and Expanded version 
  14. Thinking With Type 2nd Ed: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, & Students 
  15. How to Be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul

Best Books for Graphic Designers You Can Buy in 2022

1. Grid Systems in Graphic design by Josef Müller-Brockmann

Grid systems in graphic design - Best Book for Graphic Designers

Grid systems are essential for graphic designers as a tool for organizing layout and content. It is the decisive word in the use of grid systems in graphic design.

This is a visual communication guide for graphic designers, 3D designers, and typographers. The book is full of great conceptual examples and also shows why a particular grid choice works best in a given situation. If you want to improve yourself in this area, you cannot simply go through grid systems.


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2. Design is a job by Mike Monteiro

Design is a job

The author, Director of Design at Mule Design, explains how to communicate with customers, deliver presentations and find common ground with colleagues.

The book will help aspiring designers gather important information before doing a project. The more the client tells you before you start, the better the result will be. That’s why a good designer should be able to communicate with clients.

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Design Is a Job
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Mike Monteiro (Author) - Mike Monteiro (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 03/31/2014 (Publication Date) - A Book Apart (Publisher)


3. A New Program for Graphic Design by David Reinfurt

A New Program for Graphic Design

This is a do-it-yourself textbook that combines the practical and the experimental and builds on mid-to late-twentieth-century instructional approaches to teach sophisticated ideas of modern design to a wide audience.

The book covers a broad introduction from Benjamin Franklin to Bruno Munari, Moholy-Nagy to Muriel Cooper, and the Macintosh computer, and is based on three courses (Typography, Gestalt, and Interface) initially established for liberal arts students at Princeton University.


Latest Price on Amazon:

A New Program for Graphic Design
93 Reviews
A New Program for Graphic Design
  • Reinfurt, David (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 255 Pages - 11/01/2022 (Publication Date) - Inventory Press/D.A.P. (Publisher)


4. Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered. Austin Kleon

Show your work

Self-promotion isn’t something that every designer succeeds at. However, without strong promotion and marketing, obtaining enough clients to keep afloat might be practically difficult. Show Your Work! by Austin Kleon offers designers advice on how to share their work and be noticed.


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Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered (Austin Kleon)
  • Binding: paperback
  • Workman publishing
  • Language: english
  • Kleon, Austin (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)


5. Thinkertoys. Michael Michalko

The title of the book clearly demonstrates the importance of a non-standard approach to creativity. Agree, it’s hard to ignore it.

You are wrong if you think that creative thinking is an innate ability. In fact, it can be developed throughout life, regardless of age and ability.

“Thinkertoys” doesn’t just talk about how to nurture creativity. The book contains exercises, puzzles, and tasks, as well as ready-made techniques for generating ideas.

There are also fascinating life stories here that dilute the theoretical material.

The book is not a ready-made instruction, but a tool that will teach you to think and ask yourself the right questions … and then answer them.


Latest Price on Amazon:

Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Business Creativity
  • Used Book in Good Condition
  • Michalko, Michael (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 336 Pages - 11/04/1991 (Publication Date) - Ten Speed Press (Publisher)


6. Steal Like an Artist. Austin Kleon

Steal like an artist

“Steal Like an Artist” is a universal guide for creative people. You are right if you think that there is little unique in the world, and it is difficult to create something fundamentally new. Austin Kleon shares this viewpoint.

But a graphic designer can compile. Look for and save other people’s ideas, study and analyze them, combine them, because we are made up of what we like.

Cleon did not discover America, but he helped the reader to organize their understanding of inspiration. The book does not teach stealing in the classical sense of the word: plagiarism is a crime. But it tells you how to draw inspiration from the world around you and transform it into creativity.


Latest Price on Amazon:

Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative
  • By artist and writer Austin Kleon
  • A collection of positive messages and exercises to realize your artistic side
  • A New York Times Best-seller
  • 10 Things nobody told you about being creative!
  • ERROR:#N/A


7. The New Typography; A Handbook for Modern Designers. Jan Tschichold

Books for aspiring graphic designers almost always touch on the subject of texts and fonts. But we believe that it deserves a separate study, so we recommend Jan Tschichold’s New Typography.

The manual was first published in 1928. The book is large and covers a variety of topics, including art history – it is not suitable for light reading. It may seem boring, despite the illustrations.

Despite its age and abundance of information, “The New Typography” will be useful for graphic designers. It will lay the foundations for what a text is and how to present it correctly.


Latest Price on Amazon:

The New Typography (Weimar and Now: German Cultural Criticism (Paperback))
  • University of California Press
  • Tschichold, Jan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 288 Pages - 09/01/2006 (Publication Date) - University of California Press (Publisher)


8. Sketchnote Handbook, The: the illustrated guide to visual note taking. Mike Rohde

The sketch note

This is an illustrated guide to how to create simple sketches, write down your thoughts, and take notes on lectures and speeches with sketches.

The book will tell you how to draw simple objects and letters to visualize your thoughts and explain ideas to others.


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Sketchnote Handbook, The: the illustrated guide to visual note taking
  • Peachpit Press
  • Rohde, Mike (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 12/03/2012 (Publication Date) - Peachpit Press (Publisher)


9. Typographie: A Manual for Design. Emil Ruder


Another classic work on typography. Despite its considerable age (the original was published in the sixties), the book has not lost its usefulness for novice designers and remains a reference guide for those who want to understand the basics of book typography.

Typography development today is based on the principles described in this tutorial. It will be useful for a young specialist not only to get acquainted with the experience of previous generations (it would not be an exaggeration to say that several generations of designers around the world have grown up on this book) but also to understand how modern design patterns were formed and where they came from.


Latest Price on Amazon:

Typographie: A Manual of Design
  • Braun
  • Hardcover Book
  • Ruder, Emil (Author)
  • Multilingual (Publication Language)
  • 274 Pages - 03/01/2001 (Publication Date) - Niggli Verlag (Publisher)


10. The Art of Color. Johannes Itten

The psychology of color is a whole science. It is capable of evoking associations in the viewer, controlling his mood, and influencing the perception of the product. That’s why experienced designers pay a lot of attention to the creation of a palette.

If you don’t know how to do it and want to improve your skills, Itten’s “The Art of Color” is the best fit. Itten himself created the Bauhaus course, used in many design schools, and developed a color wheel familiar even to those distant from design.

The book covers not only the subjective attitude to color, but also the physics of light, harmony in combinations, and the basics of composition. A must-read for any designer.


Latest Price on Amazon:

The Art of Color: The Subjective Experience and Objective Rationale of Color
  • Hardcover Book
  • Itten, Johannes (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 160 Pages - 12/01/1997 (Publication Date) - John Wiley & Sons (Publisher)


11. Interaction of Color. Josef Albers

Joseph Albert’s Interaction of Color is widely used in art education. Albers explains the complex principles of color theory, and it is considered the “last word” in color theory.

Because it is intended as a guide and textbook for artists, teachers, and students, this highly influential book is easy to read and understand with good examples. If you want to learn more about color and improve the way you interact with it, this is a must-read.


Latest Price on Amazon:

Interaction of Color: 50th Anniversary Edition
  • Yale University Press
  • Albers, Josef (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 208 Pages - 06/28/2013 (Publication Date) - Yale University Press (Publisher)


12. The Psychology of Graphic Design Pricing by Micheal. C. Janda

Pricing is an important factor to be considered by freelancers, especially graphic designers. So, Micheal. C. Janda has explained well about improving profitability in each project through this book. 

The main purpose of the book is to help freelancers and agencies in charging the cost to clients. It gives brief guidelines about the variables of pricing used in graphic designing. It helps readers learn and understand the calculation of the production cost, the market value, and the client’s budget. 


Latest Price on Amazon:

The Psychology of Graphic Design Pricing: Price creative work with confidence. Win more bids. Make...
  • Janda, Michael C. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 206 Pages - 02/07/2019 (Publication Date) - Independently published (Publisher)


13. Graphic Design: Second Edition, Revised and Expanded version by Ellen Lupton and Jennifer Cole Philips

It is the revised edition of Graphic Design, written by Ellen Lupton and Jennifer Cole Philips.  The main purpose of the authors is to educate graphic designers about the new basics and concepts to be noted. The book shares knowledge about the elements of two-dimensional design and visual demonstrations. 

The book has replaced and added some new chapters to the original publication. The additional chapters are all about visualizing data, typography, Gestalt principles, and representation modes.


Latest Price on Amazon:

Graphic Design: The New Basics
  • Princeton Architectural Press
  • Lupton, Ellen (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 264 Pages - 07/14/2015 (Publication Date) - Princeton Architectural Press (Publisher)


14. Thinking With Type 2nd Ed: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, & Students by Ellen Lupton

Thinking with Type is one of the beneficial books by Ellen Lupton about typography. The book shares good knowledge about the essentials of typography. It includes typefaces, type families, kerning, tracking, etc. It gives a clear idea about the alignment of letters, words, and paragraphs. 

The revised edition has additional information about using ornaments, captions, small caps, enlarged capitals, etc. This book is a helping hand to many beginners and professionals from graphic designers to writers. 


Latest Price on Amazon:

Thinking with Type, 2nd revised and expanded edition: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers,...
  • Lupton, Ellen (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 10/06/2010 (Publication Date) - Princeton Architectural Press (Publisher)


15. How to Be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul by Andrian Shaugnessy

This book is a great source of knowledge for graphic designers and it’s written by Andrian Shaugnessy. It helps beginners and professionals to be successful in their careers. It shares a complete explanation of professional skills, strategies, and tips to run a studio. It also gives tips on collaborating with clients. 

It shares the inspiring interviews of famous designers such as Ben Drury, Paul Sahre, Sophie Thomas, etc. 


Latest Price on Amazon:

How to Be a Graphic Designer without Losing Your Soul (New Expanded Edition)
  • Princeton Architectural Press
  • Shaughnessy, Adrian (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 176 Pages - 09/22/2010 (Publication Date) - Princeton Architectural Press (Publisher)


Frequently Asked Questions

Is graphic design difficult to learn?

Learning to design is not difficult, but it requires creative thinking, an aptitude for art and design, and time and dedication. It also requires tools to learn and apply the principles and theories of design. It is also best to read about the subject or take classes to understand it in-depth.

While not any degree is required, the job just requires skills and creativity. The best qualification is a bachelor's degree in graphic design, web design, or art, and the larger companies require it.

Is it possible to learn graphic design in a month?

If you have a good grasp of graphic design basics, you can learn it in two months. However, it takes several months or years depending on your abilities to master the methods of your skills.


Best Graphic Design Books in 2022

For graphic designers, the best books are ones that are written and compiled to keep building promising designers. Technology is rapidly altering our relationship with the arts, but many of the principles we’ve come to apply still ring true in the beautiful world of brand and design.

All things considered, we hope our round-up of books helps you narrow down your market search. Keep it creative!

What did you think of our best graphic design books compilation? Have any more to add?

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