Don’t Think but Look!

2018/ Book Design/ 11” x 11”/ Digital Offset Print/ Rendezvous Super White Paper

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This book explores how sequential information can be organised in the structural layout system of a book to tell a compelling story. The book discusses Ellsworth Kelly’s approaches to composition and colour.

Ellsworth Kelly was an American artist who is known for his monochromatic, vibrant shaped canvasses. His style is both minimal and abstract. He had a strong inherent understanding of form and colour. He associated shapes and colours to certain memories and would bring this out in his work. The abstract and irregularity of his shapes would often leave the viewers confused over the correct orientation of the paintings. Kelly’s use of space was spectacular. For him, the hanging wall for the painting became a part of his composition. The placement of his work on this wall created a strong relation between foreground and background.

Utilising his approaches to his work, I borrowed characteristics and practices of his work to create a design layout for the book.

The layout was organised on a three column grid.
The images and text were treated as abstract shapes that would arrange themselves on to the page.
The placement of these images and text are important with relation to the negative space tension it would create.

The text was organised horizontally and vertically, to treat them as abstract shapes that force the viewer to physically interact with the book by changing their orientation. The text boxes varied in size, the texture they created, by manipulating the leading to create varied textural shapes.

Each page is treated as an abstract painting while remaining structured and controlled. The pages have a number tally system to create shapes as a part of the page layout.

© Naomi Shah 2021

© NAOMI SHAH 2022.