erik spiekermann interview

But we believe in those kinds of dreams and so I keep investing, and reinvesting, and reinvesting.”, “If people don’t like the pictures, I don’t care. It was quite beautiful and refreshing. I am interested in designing the actual words, adding an aesthetic dimension to the text while making it easily readable and appropriate to the medium.”. The Berlin-based creator designed the famous classical font FF Meta and is the author of various typography literature. What little I’ve seen made me despair. For 25 years you're working with small projects, domestic projects. You’re not supposed to be happy all the time. You suddenly realize what you have in common, rather than what divides you. The Big Interview Erik Spiekermann. You know, I was born in the late forties and grew up in the fifties, and there were very few cars around in my childhood. I certainly couldn’t. It felt like some of the city belonged to us again. Are there e-reader settings you believe enhance the reader experience? Follow the things that you are intensely passionate about. By the time most first-time indie authors reach the phase of book development generally reserved for design, they are chomping at the bit to see their book finished. That cut was too deep to ever heal. The whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God. You will always find something new to go after.”, “It’s a huge peace to allow yourself to be vulnerable. That's what it’s all about.”, “I think all actors have to be dreamers. People are more eager to buy well designed books - I love and seek out those published by the Folio Society. Timing in many ways is key.”, “I always try to concentrate on the process and where the real goal is, which is trying to get up every day and be the best possible version of myself and do the best work I can do.”, “Everyone’s life comes to an end. It is like tuning a violin. Erik is a world-famous art historian, typographer, designer and author who says he is “suffering from typomania: a sickness that is incurable but not lethal.”. I just let my intuition go in situations of fear. Learn the fundamentals of book design, from creating beautiful covers to formatting and typesetting professional-grade interiors. If I add some aesthetic, to make it pleasant, nice to look at, that’s added value, because when things look good, people use them. It’s hard to hear “no” all the time. It would be a shame to waste our snippet of time on this planet being afraid.”, “It's just so boring listening to false modesty. Today, our CEO Emmanuel has the amazing opportunity to interview Erik Spiekermann. You once famously said, “Make sure you have a good idea that can survive, even badly designed.”. That’s not happiness.”, “You better make every moment count. The point is that you must work every day if you ever expect to let the vision take hold of you.”, “I have a tattoo that goes around my right wrist that looks like barbed wire, but it’s actually ANDAND linked together, which stands for “A New Dawn, A New Day.” It’s about waking up every day knowing that you have a chance to start again and forgive and be forgiven and to let go of yesterday.”. Success only comes in one form. What about indie authors? Erik is a world-famous art historian, typographer, designer and author who says he is “suffering from typomania: a sickness that is incurable but not lethal.”. And I think that really takes you forward! It literally is all judged through a piece of glass. You don't communicate. As a human being it is the same thing: wherever you put your attention is probably where you are going to find yourself.”, “The recognition of luck is extraordinarily important — as well as making the best of it and creating to the best of your capabilities on that one opportunity you’re given so that it doesn’t end up in the museum of errors.”, “I think you get more confident as you get older. So, it’s totally the opposite of a business. Before that, the colors ranged from lemony yellow in the East, to orangey and beige yellows in the West. 00:00 / 00:00 / 26 April 2015. If I ever self-publish I hope I will team with a truly professional typographer and designer. An unfortunate development like this pandemic is making us rethink city planning and speeding the process. Followed by over 300,000 people on Twitter, he is frequently asked to contribute to books and magazines on a range of topics from visual language to bicycles (he owns 13 of them). But since this was a political device, we deliberately decided to leave those lines because it was symbolic of the city coming together. We’re all going to come to the same fate. And similarly in the West, all the drivers suddenly needed maps after the unification, because most of them had never been to the East before — it was like a foreign country! If you stop dreaming, it’s over.”, “I feel very lucky. That’s what religion’s about, that’s what literature’s about, it’s what life’s about: the stories that you build.”, “I am tireless, I’m relatively fearless. I’ve noticed that suddenly a lot of cars disappeared! Creating the BVG was my best and favorite job ever. When you visit, The Talks uses cookies to process your data in order to analyze our traffic. It’s like when you are riding a horse and you want it to go to the left, you look to the left first and then pull the horse’s head. Can’t wait to share your children's book with the world? What we realize in times of crisis is that it’s really, really important to talk to each other. I’m looking forward. As a more general question, what are the innovations in the publishing industry you find most interesting? Could you give us an example of a beautiful novel and tell us a little bit why you like its design? Which e-reader has the best typefaces? ... Name: Erik Spiekermann DOB: 30 May 1947 Place of birth: Stadthagen, Germany Occupation: Graphic designer, typographer. And if you live up to your own moral standard, you’re going to have a more comfortable life.”, “It’s important to say no – especially earlier in your career – because life is short and you want to be proud of things that you have done, not ashamed of them.”, “My work is integrated completely into my life and vice-versa – I’ve been working since I was sixteen and my work is my life and my life is my work. My job as a designer is to take information and translate it to the user. You can’t help but put yourself into your work.”, “I act on intuition. It doesn’t teach you anything. Well, if you look at the Berlin transport map now, there's five parallel lines going from the Westkreuz in the far west, all the way to Ostkreuz, in the far east. And then, the main thing that I give myself most credit for, was making everything yellow, which of course became the Berlin color. And then you mature at 50 and you're given your first projects.”, “There is a thing called discipline. It freed me.”, “I just keep imagining myself thirty years from now thinking, ‘Why didn’t you take advantage of all the opportunities you had? Only time will tell if something becomes a trend. To find a home for your book check out our who's-who guide to Christian publishers. Other cities like Paris and Barcelona are already doing it! 15. Work, work, work, work. You’ve successfully designed brand identities for companies like Audi, The Economist, and Bosch. You go home crying and your parents almost want you to quit but then you just do it. (Laughs) That’s one reason why I like riding a bike, so I'm a little above the cars and can actually see the streets. The printer will warehouse the books for me, so all I have to do is pay someone to do the shipping. 28 minutes ‘The Big Interview’ is Monocle’s bold new series of in-depth interviews with inspirational names from global politics, business, culture and design. Yes, but the same one as always. I’m not going to quit.”, “There is something quite beautiful with the art thing, that you can only hold it back for so long and then you have to do it.”, “If you have to defend something that you like, it makes you to like it even more. It’s shocking the extent to which our cities are dominated by cars nowadays. The fact that I don’t really need a publisher anymore, except perhaps for distribution. You learn by failing.”, “Follow the things you love! That’s why I now have this tattoo that says “Carpe Diem.” That’s what we should live by!”, “Writing itself should be so extreme, so wild, and so much fun that it doesn’t matter whether or not you ever sell the book.”, “Right now we are 40 people working in Osteria Francescana, for 28 or 30 covers a night. Interview Directory; World Guide; The Talks Interviews Art Erik Spiekermann. Why can't we learn? Most editors don’t and seem to consider designers a nuisance and a superfluous expense. In a way, every project fails every day until it succeeds! Those are the projects that I love: figuring out what might just be possible but hasn't been done yet.”, “Wherever any of us have been wounded, if we dive into what those wounds are, if we go down into and do the hard work within those wounds, we’ll actually find ourselves, we’ll find our real giftedness, a sincere, true giftedness.”, “I was a soldier in Korea and I got into a situation where I knew I was going to die. The same with everything else: politics you don’t like, products you don’t like, people you don’t like, you just swipe them away. Thank you for this interview and article. We've worked with hundreds of first-time authors, and we're here to break down the process for you. I chose to do things that I embrace, that I feel passionate about for whatever reason and I create my freedom around that.”, “It’s hard to watch the misses, it’s hard to be criticized. There is a certain something about the ever-present danger of death that makes living so great.”, “I give my best performances when I am almost snapping. But it needs an update. Failure kind of comes in all sorts of ways, and teaches you all sorts of things. But in the end, those experiences made all the difference. I think every citizen of every kind of society has to dream. 20 of the best LGBT publishers, all devoted to the publication of queer literature, or actively seeking new voices from the LGBTQ+ community! You do have to read the book (if only diagonally) and you have to know your typefaces and how to use them. Do typographers and book interior designers have a new role with the progressive switch to ebooks? I know the difference between right and wrong, I know what I feel comfortable with. I don't believe in timelessness in design, because I don't know what's going to happen in 20 years time… You know, now that we all read screens — who could have foreseen that in 1990 or 1991? Guest Author-16.07.2019. You share your time between San Francisco, Berlin and London. It may still be nourishing, but my appetite is gone. Time is something that changes every moment, it’s never repetitive — I try to follow this example.”, “We're not having to run from predatory animals like we did for hundreds of thousands of years before. And then when we’re performing, I want to do it a bit more. Are some publishers better than others at publishing nicely designed books? I wasn’t accepted in the kitchen initially, I wasn’t part of the system; the other chefs didn’t welcome me. Episode 1. I will continue doing things the way I have done them my whole life. One morning, the Gendarmenmarkt looked like an engraving from 1750: you saw the two churches, the French and the German Dome, and there was only one person in the middle. Reedsy is more than just a blog. Things may be better by now but I have not been interested. I read on a Kindle and I’ve never changed the typeface, the margins or the spacing. If you establish a good template and perhaps even pick just one typeface that works for whatever type of books you publish, you can just flow your manuscript into it and get 80% quality. I think in a way you sort of can’t help sounding like yourself. I think that’s the mark of an artist, actually, that they are rebellious, unruly… And I was one of them myself.”, “I think the final circle in being an artist is connecting, making some conversation to the world you’re in. If you’re feeling that, maybe other people need that to.”, “Failure is more interesting. But that is a perspective that requires a lot of work. In information design, you would rather have one line and give it five names — you wouldn't need five lines because as a graphic device, that’s over-information. I wanted to do nothing less than that. It doesn’t look very refined, but I find it pleasant to read. That’s it, I can’t lie; it is what it is, unabashed, naked. Blog So how did you present this unification in your design? Which city cares the most about typography? Become a member today to discover how we can help you publish a beautiful book. Mr. Spiekermann, as the designer for some of our most valuable information systems, road networks and transport communications, what sort of things catch your eye on the streets of Berlin? Only three years ago I was confident to start focusing on removing, and this is when I finally created a dish where I felt like I achieved what I tried to do for 23 years.”, “You have to open yourself. What do you look for when you first open a book? Just like background music in a store. Do you agree with Erik that “design works not because people understand or even appreciate it but because it works subliminally”? Look at all the people you could have worked with, the roles you could have done. To me, there’s only one point of view: that’s mine.”, “If you are ambitious, you are running in a tunnel that never ends. And I use that stamina now as an actress because it’s normally quite uncomfortable to make films.”, “When you’re young so many things happen and it’s really hard, but you have to fight. Erik is the designer behind many global brands and publications such as Audi, Bosch and The Economist. I have no idea about indie authors, but most authors are their own worst enemies when it comes to designing their books. He has not only taught ze Germans what a design system is but created also dozens, if not hundreds of popular typefaces, used by Deutsche Bahn, Bosch or Firefox. Ana Bogdan The Talks. There's never any depth. You cannot survive with that. I am the author and the designer and deliver a complete ready-to-print pdf anyway. Hopefully the pop-up bicycle lanes will remain permanent in some parts of the city, now that people are beginning to realize that pedestrian streets are actually great. I expect that of myself, that’s for sure.”, “I believe that you’re a result of the choices that you make. I have seen your complaints about the printed version of The Circle: not enough leading, wrong typeface, etc. But I can learn from those mistakes and grow. I am going to publish the German version of my “Stop Stealing Sheep and find out how type works”. It made me who I am.”, “Part of being a designer is to fail every day, to try things that don’t work out.

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