Useful Graphic Design Books

A noncomprehensive and biased list of graphic design books. Some of these books are canon and can be found on myriad lists, others are less referenced. Either way, any would be excellent an addition to your design library.


The Elements of Graphic Design by Alex W. White

Design Elements by Timothy Samara

Basic Visual Concepts And Principles For Artists, Architects And Designers by Wallschlaeger and Busic-Snyder

Typography: Macro and Microaethetics by Willi Kunz

Graphic Design, Referenced by Bryony Gomez-Palaci and Armin Vit


Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton

The Elements Of Typographic Style by Robert Binghurst

Typographie: A Manual of Design by Emil Rider

Stop Stealing Sheep and Find Out How Type Works by Erik Spiekermann

Typographic Systems of Design by Kimberly Elam

Typography by Denise Gonzales Crisp

Typography: My Way to Typography by Wolfgang Wiengart

Typographic Design: Form and Communication by Carter, Meggs, Day, Maxa



Making and Breaking the Grid by Timothy Samara

Grid Systems in Graphic Design, Joseph Muller-Brockman


Design Studies: Theory and Research in Graphic Design by Audrey Bennett

Graphic Design Theory by Meredith Davis

Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art by Scott McCloud


Brand Thinking and Other Noble Pursuits by Debbie Millman

Designing Brand Identity by Alina Wheeler

Game Design

Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals by Katie Salen Tekinbas

Web Design

Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug


Meggs’ History of Graphic Design by Philip B. Meggs

Graphic Design History, A Critical Guide by Johannna Drucker and Emily McVarish

Graphic Design: A Concise History by Richard Hollis

100 Ideas that Changed Graphic Design by Heller and Vienne


How to be a Graphic Designer without Losing Your Soul by Adrian Shaughnessy

On Photography by Susan Sontag

Image/Music/Text by Roland Barthes

A Smile in the Mind by Beryl McAlhone

A Designer’s Research Manual by O’Grady

Visual Research: An Introduction to Research Methodologies in Graphic Design by Ian Noble and Russel Bestley

The Visual Display of Quantitative Information by Edward Tufte