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Willard Brinton. Graphic Presentation. 1939

Several times I started to write a post about this genious book, but each moment I stopped, because I was not able to find good enough words. Even now I afraid that my short text will not cover all value of this book.

It is a big piece of work – 512 pages, published in 1939. Book was printed with pre-2nd world war technology and it makes this work more stunning. Publishers use just 5 colours, but they give us good lesson how to use them properly to mark important things.

Regarding the content: if I would start writing book about information design, I would probably copy them. Starting from prehistorical examples from cave walls, through different charts and diagrams types to the color coding and finishing with real life implications. Last Chapters called exactly: “Graphic diagrams in advertisement, posters, events and conferences”.

2 small findings: Famous map of Napoleon intervention to Russia was found by Willard first and only after it appeared in Tufte book. Also examples of drawing over charts, which were published by us are also were taken from here (more nice pictures are in the last chapters).

The Book is incredibly contemporary, sometimes I had feeling that it is just made in the old style. Before the 2nd World War people were aware about Sankey diagrams, just named it differently as “flow chart”. But the most important how the Sankey was done that time – with strings and ink, not with E-Sankey tool.

Scan of the book Graphic Presentation by Willard Brinton you can download here on our blog.


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  5. Знакомьтесь: диаграммы Сэнкей / Sankey


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  1. UPD: Willard Brinton. Graphic Presentation. 1939 http://bit.ly/i45brd

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