Thoughts on Paul Rand and Alvin Lustig

Some moons ago, when I was working for peanuts and chained to the bottom rung of the ladder of career goals, I decided to inject a bit of modernism into the graphics for a particularly hideous finance presentation.

I had been given a fantastic book on Paul Rand – the American graphic designer who along with my other massive favourite – Alvin Lustig –  reached their peak, I feel, in their book jacket design.

Paul Rand homage
Dolly’s homage to ‘The Captive Mind’ 

Anyways, here is little old me, typing away and trying to wake people up after a long lunch and so I became very inspired to take the design ethos and aesthetic of these two masters and apply them to my administrative work.

Pippa is inspired by 20th Century art movements whilst sipping her gin

The problem with this?  Far too enjoyable.  I began papering walls, noticeboards, getting out the paint and glue and generally stepping on toes because nothing screams, ‘please tap me on the back and promote me into a more creative role’ than applying mid-twentieth century design to a PowerPoint.

Did it work? Nah.  Was I cross? Sort of..but extremely grateful for educating myself to the possibilities.  Check them out, the filing can wait.  Spend a glorious afternoon Googling images and I promise that Ariel 12 point and generic templates will never look the same again.

Here ends your tutorial for this week.


Senior Tutor, Artistypist and Vice-Chancellor’s Fool

University of Admin, Narragonia


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