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FEATURE: Books

MONDAY SEPTEMBER 5, 2020

Books are always a form of inspiration for us. Having them physically in the hands feeling the pages is an involvement that’s tough to replace. Though we love our ebooks, some books are just better in print.

fred herzog modern color
fred herzog modern color review
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Modern Color

This is one with just the right amount of foreword on Fred Herzog, the time and place to kickstart things. The publisher has put a substantial amount of attention to detail in printing, layout and binding on this book. It is easy to go though 300 photo-filled pages. Some embossing on its hardcover certainly adds to the experience.

less is more dieter rams
less is more dieter rams book
less is more dieter rams review

Less is More

Written in both English and German which can get wordy as it takes each reader into a journey of design and its influence over time. The use of several types (a good three) of paper and the inclusion of early drafts further draws participation. One has to have a lot of interest in Dieter Rams or industrial design to fully appreciate this book.

petrolicious magazine review
petrolicious magazine

Petrolicious

An annual subscription comes with exclusive videos and a copy of their publication will be sent every quarter. Since it is their first go, we had our reservations. Each comes wrapped in a sheet stamped with Petrolicious logo and an envelope securing all that goodness. Despite that, they tend to still get dented edges from shipping.

 

Doubts are all gone from flipping a few pages as it is beautifully put together. From the use of typeface, quality of content to photography, the team at Petrolicious demonstrates automobile journalism at its best. The choice of paper and definition of print for $129, inclusive of postage, there’s just nothing to complain of.

 

If you’re into cars, especially classic ones, it is something to have. They have done an excellent job at spotlighting proper cars by painting driving experiences to life with words. Not quite Henry Catchpole in terms of writing nonetheless an interesting alternative.

cereal city guide london
cereal city guide new york

Cereal City Guide

Cereal magazine is loved by minimalists for their clean and clutter free layout. Aside from their usual biannual releases, they came out with a New York, London and Paris city guides, I didn’t get the last one as it is a place I’ve already been.

 

In times of such, it is nice to travel from the comfort of your very living room. Some may find it an advert however images of food and venue are rather enjoyable. It’d be a lot enjoyable if these pages were larger as flipping through required delicacy of handling a newborn.

suffering of light alex webb
the suffering of light

The Suffering of Light

Everything of this book is simply generous in size and a collection of thirty years of photographs. Alex Webb demonstrates masterclass composition to go with in the moment photography. It is large enough (not to the point of cumbersome) for anyone to appreciate each image in detail. If you are into photography, this is one not to be missed.

world atlas of coffee
world atlas of coffee second edition

The World Atlas of Coffee

Nice in the hands although not coffee table feel-good considering it leans towards the educational side of things instead of casual Sunday flipping. If you’d like to know all about coffee, there is all to it here and more. Even if you’re not, this book might inspire in picking up a new brewing method for the weekend. It is one that has been meticulously put together much like James’ work on Youtube.

liam wong tokyoo review
2021 liam wong tokyoo

TO:KY:OO

Colours are altered to a point where an easily recognisable Tokyo looks like a fantasy world. Easy to read sentences accompany the reader for the first quarter of the book from then on it is an ample amount of night photos. To:ky:oo may not appeal to the likes of a traditional photobook but it is a wonderful display of what mastery of digital photography and post-editing can do.   The book ends with how Liam Wong decides on his photographs, edit and colour grade them sweetens the deal in further immersing the experience.

ren hang taschen
ren hang taschen review

Ren Hang

Get past the eye-catching, repulsive or whatever it may be, you’ll be treated with images that can be taken at home but why hasn’t this been done? The book’s a good size, generously filled with individualistic photographs taken with a Minolta point and shoot film camera loaded with Fuji C200. Some say this is simply snapshot photography but they are very much deliberately done, following the rules of composition.

 

In spite of Ren Hang saying there’s no purpose to his work, my interpretation from flipping these pages is that the human body is merely a vessel to experience the world.

Harry Gruyaert photobook
Harry Gruyaert book review

Harry Gruyaert

Instead of the usual sights of America, pictures here are taken throughout Europe, Middle East and parts of Asia. No, they aren’t taken on mountain tops but ordinary sights of our everyday life such as the morning market, coin laundry down the street, in a waiting room and so on. This self-titled phonebook is filled with photographs that have bright colours and interesting composition where you would stop to appreciate each of them.

 

Although I wish more photographs have been included, you do get the feeling where only the very best of Harry Gruyaert’s work lives here.

Sebastiao Salgado genesis
Sebastiao Salgado genesis book

Genesis

If there is only one word for this book, it’s vast. From the size of this hardcover to the places Sebastiao Salgado has gone to take these images. Massive landscapes are difficult to capture but they are perfectly executed here. So are portraits of human subjects and animals in their habitats. The entire book is in strong contrast black and white, and the reader is occasionally treated with fold outs which adds to the experience.

 

The reason for showcasing all this? It is about time to give the importance of environment conservation a thought.