Street Smart Design

Reviewed by Daniel Sigmon


Street Smart Design is a book that looks at the concepts and techniques of graphic design used on T-shirts, posters, flyers, and other such things. The book talks a lot about “guerilla graphics” and its somewhat unconventional approach to the graphic design industry. The book talks about how “street smart” designers choose their images. Methods include using items such as scissors, stencils, and typewriters to make their images pop, and give them a vibrant yet gritty feel. The next section of the book talks about how the designers choose their color. The colors generally chosen have somewhat of a synergy, but also the complete opposite. The colors chosen all generally seem to stand out individually and simultaneously sync with the other colors. The book also talks a lot about type and how “street smart” designers approach it. Rubber stamps, labelmaking, and photocopying are all techniques used but the way they are used in this case, is a little unconventional. For example, the designers use handwritten crude looking fonts or multiple different fonts, and in some cases the words aren’t even completely visible, but instead covered up partially by an image or other text. The book as a whole was a great and interesting read, filled with exampled of less than ordinary graphic design. The methods used and discussed really make the reader think outside of the typical graphic design box. This book will open your mind to different ways of thinking and approaching future projects.