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Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

“…before we worked together, he was a legend in my eyes. His designs, for film titles and company logos and record albums and posters, defined an era.”
— MARTIN SCORSESE

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design is the first book to be dedicated to one of the greatest American designers of the twentieth century. Produced by Jennifer Bass (Saul’s daughter) and Pat Kirkham, and published by Laurence King, it made me happy to have the postman deliver this one.

The following paragraph is quoted from the press release. It’s followed by a few snapshots of the content and a short film showing the print process.

Saul Bass (1920-1996) created some of the most compelling images of American postwar visual culture. Having extended the remit of graphic design to include film titles, he went on to transform the genre. His best-known works include a series of unforgettable posters and title sequences for films such as Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo and Otto Preminger’s The Man with the Golden Arm and Anatomy of a Murder. He also created some of the most memorable logos and corporate identity campaigns of the century, including those for major companies such as AT&T, Quaker Oats, United Airlines, and Minolta.

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Studio portrait, the Bronx. c. 1931

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Tone Poems of Color (album cover, 1956)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Manufacturers National Bank (selection of ads, 1960-61)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
San Francisco International Film Festival (seventh festival poster, 1963)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Frank Holmes Laboratories, Inc. (trademark, 1954)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Ceramic tiles (sculptured tile designs, 1957-58)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Playhouse 90, CBS (opening sequence, 1956)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
The Man with the Golden Arm (poster, 1955)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
North by Northwest (title sequence frames, 1959)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Psycho (title sequence frames, 1960)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Celanese (trademark and style manual, 1966)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
Saul with staff members (Bell System identity, 1969)

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

Here’s a brief insight of the Saul Bass printing process.

1,484 illustrations
290 x 258mm
440 pages
Hardback

If you’re a designer of any kind, this is one book you don’t want to miss. Very happy to have the postman deliver it, looking forward to reading the corporate identity section in particular.

Purchase Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design from Laurence King or:

on Amazon.com
on Amazon.co.uk
on Amazon.ca

You can read two short excerpts over on Logo Design Love:
This is what you need — a magic dot.
I often think that presentations are more difficult than the work itself.

More recommended reads: A few good books.

My second book on Amazon

Possibly related posts

8 comments about “Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design”

  1. On a related note, if anyone hasn’t seen many Alfred Hitchcock flicks, I would recommend Rear Window and NxNW as my favorites. Just wonderful films. Saul and Hitchcock, probably both ahead of their time.

  2. Hi David. I did see that this book was now available, so good to hear someone of your caliber is praising it. I love his work and it seems fitting that it has now been put into a book like this. I shall certainly put it on my Xmas list.

  3. A good video David, I had never heard of Saul before, but do recognise his work.

    Have to lift my hand up though as not seeing many Alfred Hitchcock films, but that is possibly an age thing.

  4. A must have, thank you for the info!

  5. I had started to give up hope on a book on Saul Bass. Thank you David for covering it or I would never have known!

  6. I have been following your posts for some time now. I wonder how do you manage to update your site + Tweets, etc. It seems it is time consuming. When do you have time to work!! Congrats!

  7. This book was delivered to me the other day & it is absolutely incredible & very well presented.

    Definitely a must for graphic designers!

    For me Saul Bass is the very best & this book just cemented that for me. If you don’t know this man & you see this book you will probably begin to recognise his work all over the place, it’s been used time & time again.

    Always replicated but never duplicated.

  8. This looks lovely. Can’t wait to get my mitts on it. Thanks for a timely article.

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