Brigitte Schuster: Book designers from the Netherlands

“Book Designers from the Netherlands” was presented by its author Brigitte Schuster on Friday. This refined book is published under the label Brigitte Schuster Éditeur and was launched just recently at the Special Collections, part of the Library of the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

Foto © Sebastian Weiß
The 256-page edition contains interviews with 13 prominent contemporary book designers from the Netherlands and clearly shows a wide variety of approaches to design.The idea for this book was born when Brigitte was doing her post-graduate TypeMedia course in the Hague. While working on her diploma project—a type family for editorial design—she felt the necessity to define the book designers’ typographical needs.

Interviews were conducted between 2010 and 2013. Brigitte captured the personalities of the designers and the unique atmosphere of their workplaces. She was interested in how designers lead their professional and personal lives as well as the psychological aspects of their work. Book designers share their thoughts about very crucial themes: design philosophy, earning a living with book design, publishing in the Netherlands and elsewhere, their working process and their daily lives. Their different opinions and views allow us to better understand the contemporary Dutch book design scene.

Brigitte not only worked on the written content of her book, as she also took photographs of the designers in front of their bookshelves. The design and typesetting of the book are also done by the author. “Book Designers from the Netherlands” is a 16 x 24 cm book with an open binding and a register mark on the side. The cover’s orange color explicitly refers to the Netherlands.

The designers who are interviewed include Joost Grootens, Karen Polder, Ron van Roon, Françoise Berserik, Armand Mevis, Walter Nikkels, Hansje van Halem, Robbert and Oscar Schrover, Caroline de Lint, Bram de Does, Tessa van der Waals and Adriaan de Jonge.

Brigitte mentioned that the last stages of the work on her book lined up with the last months of her pregnancy. That gives us a reason to congratulate Brigitte on two new offspring!

Brigitte Schuster

Brigitte Schuster

Brigitte Schuster qualified as a graphic designer, studied the visual arts in Italy, Portugal and Canada, font design at the KABK (Type and Media) in The Hague, and is currently studying at the University of London as part of an MA in book history. She writes for different design magazines (Slanted, Codex Magazin). From 2008 to 2011 she taught graphic design in Canada – initially at a college in Montreal, and later at university in Halifax (Nova Scotia College of Art and Design). She lives and works in Switzerland where she worked until recently as a graphic and type designer at TGG Hafen Senn Stieger in St. Gallen. In 2013 she set up her own publishing house 'Brigitte Schuster Éditeur', under which her first book will appear in May 2014 titled "Book Designers from the Netherlands".

Text — Aleksandra Samulenkova — LucasFonts