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Good Design Looks Easy: Max Huber

April 7, 2009

Max Huber la Rinascente

Max Huber la Rinascente

I recently started a screen printing class at Lill Street Art Center in Chicago (the best place to take any fine art class in Chicago, trust me!) 

I began searching for inspiration for my class piece. I want to make an over-sized business card for Hello Designers. The obvious comes to mind: enormous hellos, hello in different languages, a phone, a ring, maybe “ring” ring” in different type faces. Ok, good…I got that out of my system.

Screen printing is a new process for me that leaves me rather confused. It is an additive process which ultimately leaves the first color you place on the page to be the foreground of your piece, not the background. Hummm, so I have to start backwards?

This is what lead me to do a little research. At Crate and Barrel it was a prerequisite to love love Helvetica and Max Huber. Max Huber was a Swiss Graphic Designer who is best known for his combination of painting, photography and other graphic media. He was avant-garde  throughout his career (1940’s-1980’s) and today we see his influence in overlapping typography and transparency. Photoshop elements graphic designers take for granted he created using real hands-on skills. Skills I am going to attempt to learn (gulp).

Max Huber

Max Huber

His work is so beautiful and simple I have to apply Paul Graham’s design theory: Good Design looks Easy. Huber has mastered his medium like a world-renowned athlete or famous pianist, his work flows naturally from the mind to the hand. Each line is in the right place, each message is clear and beautifully perfected. It’s like when you look at a line drawing by Picasso and think, ” I can do that!” and your valiant attempt looks like a first grade doodle without any grace or ease, kinda like that. Good Design looks Easy, and what is why we love it.

Max Huber Phadion Book

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