Visual Interaction Design Reading List

UPDATED 2019 – over the last four years, I’ve been teaching Visual Interaction Design at CCA (California College of the Arts) – which is a crash course in visual design for interaction designers. I reference a lot of great books that I think are worthy of having on the shelf as I work up my curriculum and syllabus. Some old standards have gone by the wayside for being too outdated, but many are evergreen as the basic principles underlying good design are timeless. I’m sure I am missing some but here is my reading list for the class: (google doc)

Visual Interaction Design Readings  (from VIXD class at CCA)

Required Texts:
Type on Screen, Ellen Lupton, Princeton Architectural Press

Other Texts:
Thinking With Type, Ellen Lupton,  Princeton Architectural Press

Several of the weekly readings will come from these books.

The New Graphic Design Basics – chapters on gestalt principles
Ellen Lupton & Jennifer Cole Philips, Princeton Architectural Press

Designing with the Mind in Mind – chapter 2 and 4
Jeff Johnson, Morgan Kauffman

The Laws of Simplicity – chapter 2
John Maeda, MIT Press

Understanding Comics – chapters 6 and 8
Scott McCloud, Harper Perennial

Design is a Job – chapters 7 and 8
Mike Moneiro, A Book Apart

On Web Typography – chapters 4, 5, and 6
Jason Santa Maria, A Book Apart

Designing for iOS

Google Material Design

Mobile and Multi-Device Lessons Learned
Luke Wroblewski,

Mapping Experiences
James Kalbach,  O’Reilly Media

Adaptive Path’s guide to Experience Mapping

Online Articles
Gestalt and sketching articles
Why is Sketching Still Important to Design

The Sketch Book

The Benefits of Visual Note taking

Design Elements and Principles

Understanding Visual Hierarchy in Web Design–webdesign-84

Color articles
Understanding the Qualities and Characteristics of Color | Tuts+ Web Design Article–webdesign-13292

Color Usability: 4 Keys to Clockwork Conversion | Three Deep

Color Theory for Designers – Smashing Magazine | Parts 1, 2, 3

Web Developer’s Guide to Color

Branding articles
How to Use Photography in Branding

Branding – Not just a Logo

20 Actionable Tips to Build a Winning Visual Brand Identity

The Impact of Interaction Design on Brand Perception

What Apple and Starbucks Taught Me About Building A Brand

Logo articles
New logo and Identity for SFMOMA done in-house

New Global identity for Netflix

The 7 Step Paul Rand Logo Test

A Lightweight Branding Exercise for Startups

Design System articles
The Rise of Design Systems

Color in Design Systems

Buttons in Design Systems

current: experience matters design :: senior level interaction design and systems strategy consulting former partner, tangible user experience; Yahoo! founder of the public and internal Yahoo! pattern library. design director of ued teams responsible for designing solutions across key yahoo! platforms: social media, personalization, membership and vertical search.


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