Influences and Inspiration:Rand combines language from poetryand business and drew on inspirationthat was as oppositional to business aspossible. He admired and spoke aboutinfluences such as artists including PaulCezanne and Jan Tschichold.
Key question:Consider how the two images ofinpsiration could have turned intoRand’s design?
Bold Collage:While the artform had beenused in the arts for sometime. Rand was one of the1st to collage photographsand combine them withshapes and colours inmagazines to lend weightto editorial, a style takenfrom artists like LaszloMaholy-Nagy. Laszlo Maholy-Nagy
The cover of this PM iswidely recognized as oneof the iconic images of20th-century AmericanGraphic Design.Laszlo Maholy-Nagy
Identities:One of his strengths, as Moholy-Nagy pointed out, was his ability as asalesman to explain the needs his identities would address for thecorporation.
Modernism and Paul Rand:Paul Rand’s ideas suggested that there was a way of communicatingsomething in a perfect way. He thought that ideas could be refined somuch that they would not be confused.Modernist artwork tends to be organised, without clutter and idealistic.He wrote and spoke widely about these kinds of ideals within design attaught these skills at Yale University.
Post-ModernismGraphic design and the arts in general have changed a lot since Randstarted working.The current era of design is called Post-Modernist. It is an era wherepeople have started thinking that there isn’t really a single perfectsolution to a design problem that will communicate the best.Rather, artists and designers now tend to think that there are multiplesolutions for different individuals. Because of this Post-Modernist artand design tends to mix all kinds of different styles together, withoutsaying which one is better.
Post-ModernismAn example of this is Barny Barford’s work that combines classicceramics with consumer branding:
Post-ModernismThe kind of design might be a lot less clear. It may be more layeredand more fractured like this work by David Carson:
Impact of changing attitudes towards design:Because of his high-modernist ideals, Rand became frustrated with therise of Post-Modernist design and even resigned from his teaching postat Yale when they appointed a Post-Modern designer called SheilaLevrant de Bretteville:
Logo DesignPaul Rand is most famous for his timeless logo designs. He summarised what a logo is and does as:• A logo is a flag, a signature.• A logo doesn’t sell (directly), it identifies.• A logo is rarely a description of a business.• A logo derives its meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolizes, not the other way around.• A logo is less important than the product it signifies; what it means is more important than what it looks like.• A logo appears in many guises: a signature is a kind of logo, so is a flag.
Perhaps the most famous logo is the design for IBM
Key questions:• Could you say this about any kind of art form?• How might these principles relate to your own work?• Is there a part of your work that could be refined in the same way a logo could?• What ideas does Paul Rand’s work give you?
Further references:For a wide range of lectures, presentations and writing by Paul Rand on the nature of design go to:http://www.paul-rand.com/index.php