my shopping cart
The Wayfinding Handbook
Information Design for Public Places
David Gibson

ISBN 9781568987699
Publication date 3/1/2009
7 x 8.5 inches (17.8 x 21.6 cm), Paperback
152 pages, 265 color illustrations, 5 b/w illustrations
Rights: World; Carton qty: 36; ( 1,277 .0)

Available now

$24.95     ADD TO CART

Available for online reading at (subscription or short-term rental required)

Where am I? What can I do here? Where can I go from here? How do I get out of here?

Consciously or not, we ask such questions every day as we navigate the places and spaces of our lives. Whether we find ourselves in a museum, hospital, airport, mall, or street in an unfamiliar city, we depend on systems of visual, audible, and tactile cues not only to lead the way, but also to keep us safe. They are the fundamental questions of wayfinding--a process that encompasses both the experience of choosing a path within a built environment and the set of design elements that aid in such a decision. A decade ago, the professional practice of wayfinding design simply involved devising sign systems. Today, the field is much broader and continues to expand to address technological developments--kinetic media, GPS systems, web connectivity, smart materials--as well as cultural changes in areas such as branding and environmental awareness. Similarly, a cross-disciplinary familiarity with graphic, architectural, landscape, interior, industrial, and information design has become an essential requirement of twenty-first-century wayfinding design.

The Wayfinding Handbook is an exciting new volume in our acclaimed Design Briefs series. Professional wayfinding designer David Gibson draws on more than thirty years of experience collaborating with architects, planners, developers, managers, and civic leaders to offer an insider's view of this rapidly evolving discipline. Using real-life examples, Gibson illustrates the way type, color, mapmaking, dimensional forms, material selection, and new media are used to create effective wayfinding systems

The Wayfinding Handbook is a complete guide to the discipline, from planning and design to practical considerations, such as setting up teams and managing projects. "Other Voices" sidebars, presented throughout the book, reveal the opinions of experts who plan, manage, and shape wayfinding projects. A comprehensive bibliography and gallery of resources round out what is likely to become the go-to resource for students, professionals, or anyone charged with designing people-friendly, universally accessible environments.

David Gibson is co-founder and managing principal of Two Twelve. His dedication to delivering thoughtful, user-centered design established the firm's reputation as the first advocate of public information design, the planning and presentation of complex information to diverse audiences.

Instrumental in developing Two Twelve's strength in environmental graphics, Gibson is responsible for some of the firm's highest profile projects including signage and wayfinding for Hartford, Downtown Baltimore, Downtown Brooklyn, and Yale University; signage and graphics for the historic Radio City Music Hall and New Amsterdam Theatre; and master planning and environmental graphic design for Harvard Medical School affiliates, Children's Hospital Boston, and Massachusetts General Hospital. He is currently creating wayfinding programs for the Princeton University and The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and a city-wide signage program for the Durham Parks and Recreation Department in North Carolina.

Gibson studied architecture at Cornell University, attended the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, and received an MFA in graphic design from the Yale University School of Art. He began his career as a project designer for the Ontario Ministry of National Resources.


Editorial Reviews

"The Wayfinding Handbook is Gibsons first book and the latest volume in the publishers Design Briefs series. It offers a comprehensive look at the discipline, covering everything from managing projects to fabricating signs."

Choice Magazine:
"This book by graphic and wayfinding designer Gibson has a very particular niche. It is excellent in providing a general introduction to the field of environmental graphic design, or wayfinding. For someone with no exposure to this field, this volume will be very informative in covering the various details of this type of work." — S. Skaggs

Designer as Author, Merge Blog:
"A great read filled with practical info for communication designers working in this unique area of our field. read the full review by clicking HERE" — Doug Powell

Way to Go, Print Magazine:
"...analysis of techniques used to organize data for large-scale wayfinding projects will be invaluable for newcomers... fluidly weaves together descriptions of historical and contemporary practices with illustrations to suggest the dynamic creative possibilities of the field... This book should point the way, as it were, for better solutions in the future." — Stephen Zacks

Urban Design:
"For anyone who ever wondered how designers helped you arrive at your nosebleed seats in a sprawling stadium, this is the book for you." — Shin-pei Tsay

Innovation of the Week, Business Week:
"David Gibson on Business Week's innovation of the week podcast! click HERE to listen to the entire podcast."

Design Magazine (South Africa):
"The Wayfinding Handbook is a complete guide to the discipline, from planning and design to practical considerations, such as setting up teams and managing projects."

Design Notes :
"The content is quite strong, starting with a breakdown of the design process and where each of the chapters falls into the different categories. After seeing this incorporated here Im not sure why more books dont do something similar by showing the content in a logical way. Talking out loud here, I think theres a great opportunity to incorporate a table of contents in a related way Along with the process and content, the design of the book is quite strong. I enjoyed reading it, not just because of the content but how it was laid out." — Michael Surtees

"Great for the designer in your life... this informative little book shows how we find our way from here to there using a complex systems of visual, audible and tactile cues. If you can digest the rather-academic language (it is published by Princeton Architectural Press, after all), you'll never look at an ordinary old sign in the same way again. " — Dorothy Robinson

Communication Arts:
"The complexity behind what appears to be a simple directional sign is astounding. Truly design for the people, wayfinding systems help us navigate through our world. Part primer, part design resource, the latest from the Design Briefs series concisely covers the immense and wildly varying field of, as the subtitle says, information design for public spaces. Calling on his more than 30 years of experience, Gibson covers the basics of the discipline, the planning for and design of wayfinding systems, as well as code requirements."

Reader Comments

Be the first to add your comments about this book!
Jump to:

Related books:

Designing For Social Change
Indie Publishing
Graphic Design Thinking
Graphic Design Theory
37 E 7th St., NY, NY 10003 | 212.995.9620 | fax 212.995.9454 | Order toll-free at 800.759.0190 |