Designing For People
New York: Simon and Schuster, 1955. First Printing [Stated]. Hardcover. The format is approximately 6.75 inches by 9.75 inches. 240 pages. Illustrated endpapers. Illustrations. Cover has some wear and soiling. Publisher's Introduction by Richard L. Simon. Henry Dreyfuss (March 2, 1904 – October 5, 1972) was an American industrial design pioneer. Dreyfuss is known for designing some of the most iconic devices found in American homes and offices throughout the twentieth century, including the Western Electric Model 500 telephone, the Westclox Big Ben alarm clock, and the Honeywell round thermostat. Dreyfuss enjoyed long-term associations with several name brand companies such as American Telephone and Telegraph, John Deere, Polaroid, and American Airlines. Dreyfuss began as a Broadway theatrical designer. Until 1920, he apprenticed under Norman Bel Geddes, who would later become one of his competitors. In 1929, Dreyfuss opened his own office for theatrical and industrial design. His firm met with commercial success, and continued as Henry Dreyfuss Associates for over four decades after his death. In 1955, Dreyfuss wrote Designing for People. A window into Dreyfuss's career as an industrial designer, the book illustrated his ethical and aesthetic principles, included design case studies, many anecdotes, and an explanation of his "Joe" and "Josephine" anthropometric charts. From the first answering machine ("the electronic brain") and the Hoover vacuum cleaner to the SS Independence and the Bell telephone, the creations of Henry S. Dreyfuss have shaped the cultural landscape of the 20th century. Written in a robust, fresh style, this book offers an inviting mix of professional advice, case studies, and design history along with historical black-and-white photos and the author's whimsical drawings. In addition, the author's uncompromising commitment to public service, ethics, and design responsibility makes this masterful guide a timely read for today's designers. From a review by Phillip Hunter found on-line: Dreyfuss hoists the flag of human-centered design 40-odd years before our struggles with defining digital interactions began, yet his message is as true and applicable now as it was then. Designing for People takes us through Dreyfuss’ decision to establish himself as an industrial designer, expanding from his early career designing theater sets, through the growth of his practice and business and up to the state of industrial design in the early 1950s. The book moves through design thought and philosophy, stories of projects and results, exposition of what the design business is about, and predictions of what industrial designers will work on in the future. He also throws in anecdotal collections of amusing design gaffes and the questions he received over the years. As one would hope, the organization flows smoothly, each section setting the stage for the next. Dreyfuss’ style is easy and light. Even when making a serious point or giving a detailed explanation of design, he phrases and frames in a manner that allows the reader to comprehend quickly yet deeply. Condition: Good.
Keywords: Industrial Design, Testing, Telephone, Human Factor, Bell Laboratories, Psychological Effect, Aesthetics, Engineering, Advertising, Drawings, Innovation