HOW Design Live Brings You Design Greats: Kit Hinrichs

If you want to learn something—playing the cello, cooking Indian food, crocheting—it’s best if you study with a master of that particular discipline. An accomplished cellist can teach you to play Bach’s Suite No. 3 unlike anyone else could. If you want to learn how to design like an AIGA medalist, then you should study with one of them, or at least spend some time in a medalist’s presence. Fortunately, the upcoming HOW Design Live conference offers you precisely that opportunity. There will be many design greats in attendance. And among them is Kit Hinrichs. (If you register now, you can take 10 percent off with the discount code PRNT12; more on that below.)

Hinrichs now heads up his own design firm, Studio Hinrichs. For 23 years, he was a partner at Pentagram, where he designed the identity, environmental signage, and collateral for clients like the California Academy of Sciences, Design Within Reach, and Muzak, not to mention museum exhibitions for organizations including the Experience Music Project. He is an editorial designer par excellence, who has lent his elegant, thoughtful touch to magazines, annual reports, and books. No less a figure than Massimo Vignelli praised Hinrichs in Print’s pages back in 1996, when Vignelli spoke with writer Ellen Shapiro about upheaval in typography and design. An excerpt from that conversation:

Vignelli: To me everything has a meaning. Typography is made of minor things, and unless you master the meanings of those things, you are illiterate….

Shapiro: How can you say these aren’t matters of style or taste? Hasn’t Kit Hinrichs put initial caps in places that aren’t flush left?

Vignelli: Yes, but Kit does it in a masterly way. With a sense of scale, a sense of appropriateness. Everything is perfect. The difference is knowledge. Knowledge shows.

As a further measure of his stature, a retrospective of Hinrichs’s work, titled “The Storyteller’s Art,” was showcased at Art Center College of Design in 2009. Hinrichs is also a longtime aficionado of Americana memorabilia, and he has amassed an impressive collection of flags and related ephemera, featured in his book Long May She Wave and in related exhibitions at San Francisco’s Museum of Craft and Folk Art and the Nevada Museum of Art.

At HOW Design Live, on Saturday evening, Hinrichs will be talking about his work creating The Standard Volume 5: Special Effects, which surveys the rich panoply of printing techniques and embellishments that allow the printed page and the experience of print to come deliriously alive. As an artisan who has worked in the print medium for several decades, Hinrichs knows this material like few others do; if you want to design as Hinrichs does, then get your tickets and join us as we, too, learn from the masters.

The discount code PRNT12 is good for 10 percent off the regular individual full conference rates for HOW Design Conference, InHOWse Managers Conference, the Dieline Package Design Conference, or Creative Freelancer Conference. It cannot be combined with other discount offers.

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