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Lines to Live By - Mike Gold


Book review: Lines to Live By - by Mike Gold

More than about technique, this book was a peek into the process of a calligrapher. Indeed, Gold advises that "if you focus on process, product will come" and "enjoy the process" (p. 22).
It is a quick read in terms of length, but there are some nice nuggets you might want to ponder for a bit.

This book enthusiastically promotes finding one's style as a modern calligrapher, and going beyond what was done in the past.

Gold discusses the value of expressive calligraphy, even when it borders on or is illegible. Whether you are open or not open to this type of calligraphy, the discussion gives some insight from the perspective of an artist who does this type of art.
(It should be noted that Gold has done extensive work in the greeting card industry where lettering obviously needs to be legible. He allows himself to be more expressive in his personal art.)

I won't go into the merits or my opinion of this artistic approach one way or the other, as this is just a book review. I will say that this book opens the door for the reader to examine what he/she thinks about the topic of how far illegibility should go in modern lettering art.

The book includes a nice range of Gold's artwork, some of which he includes to illustrate a point that he discusses. Many pieces are exciting and fun to look at.


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