This afternoon I received the latest issue of Media Inc. - which included a mention of my book Identity Crisis!: 50 redesigns that transformed stale identities into successful brands. Media Inc. is a trade magazine promoting the Pacific Northwest's advertising, creative services, film & video, audio, multimedia, web, broadcast, publishing, printing, and music industries. A digital edition of the issue is available to read on the publication website.
One such piece of advice, from Debbie Millman, reads in part:
If I had to one belief that I believe is most detrimental to many designers, it is this: that being a successful designer is all about being a fabulously talented designer. It is not. That is only one part of it. Being a fabulously talented designer is essentially achieving operational excellence, in the same way that Apple makes great iPods or Jimmy Choo makes great shoes.Read Debbie's complete quote in Identity Crisis! - or check out more of her words of wisdom, and personal insights, on her blog or her Internet radio show Design Matters.
The Powell's website, which still posts the incorrect title of the book (Update 11.19.07: OK, that's funny - overnight the title was corrected on the Powell's site), has shown a couple "used" copies of the book in recent weeks - which simply means that some individuals receiving local review copies have sold them. In contacting Powell's over a week ago, I learned that the two copies of Identity Crisis! ordered from the publisher were never shipped and therefore never arrived at the store. I was also told that the website listing for the number of book copies in a local warehouse is actually not that at all. The number of copies supposedly in a Powell's warehouse is, in reality, the number available from various regional book distributors.
I do understand that many interested in Identity Crisis! want to peruse a copy before buying the book. In buying design books, I always want to look before I buy. So, if you want to physically buy the book at Powell's you need to let them know they need to make copies available at the stores. (Years ago I lived four blocks from the store and was almost in need of rehab due to the illness of purchasing so many design volumes.) You may order the book from them and it will be shipped to the store for pickup or to your address.
If you are an individual who likes to support local, independent bookstores I would suggest picking up a copy of Identity Crisis! at St. Johns Booksellers in North Portland. Multiple signed copies of the book are available at my neighborhood bookstore - and the support of a small retailer will be greatly appreciated. You might want to inquire about the book at your own local independent bookstore, too.
In the Portland metropolitan area, I have also seen multiple copies of Identity Crisis! at major chain bookstores like Borders and Barnes & Noble. In fact, the other day I saw multiple copies of Identity Crisis! right next to two copies of my friend Von Glitschka's book Crumble. Crackle. Burn. I did some creative product placement on the shelf so both of our books had a much higher profile.
I do appreciate all the positive comments I have received about Identity Crisis!. The published reviews have been great. The book is out there - it just takes a little searching for it in some parts of the country (like my hometown).
Online magazine DesignerToday has posted a review of Identity Crisis: 50 Redesigns That Transformed Stale Identities into Successful Brands. The complete critique, by designer and writer Jake Van Ness, may be read on the DesignerToday site. Van Ness sums up his comments with:
This book is a wonderful source of inspiration and I think it is a must have for any designer interested or currently working in the field of identity design.
DesignerToday has been providing industry professionals the most current design news, product reviews, related articles, tutorials by subscription and more, for nearly a decade.
Yesterday was the first of several Identity Crisis! speaking engagements on my calendar. Program Director Gary Brown invited me to speak to the Capstone students in the School of Business Administration's Business Outreach Program at Portland State University. My presentation on branding and marketing tied in well with the course's current project work.
Student teams are paired with local existing businesses that need business and marketing assistance. Over the two-term course, students take on the role of small business consultant. At the end of the second term a written report is turned in at the time of the final team oral presentation. The format of the report is different for each team, as different businesses require different types of information. The report provides an overview of the client’s needs, work done throughout the project, and applicable recommendations for the client.
My own identity redesign case studies, examples from Identity Crisis! and shared marketing/advertising experience, gave students some "real world" examples and information to consider when dealing with the challenges of their own course "clients."
By the way, the Portland State University identity re-design, by firm Sockeye Creative, is showcased in Identity Crisis!.
Since 2004 I have been a member of the HOW Magazine Editorial Advisory Board. I have also written for the magazine, and been included in HOW articles written by others. In May 2008 I will be speaking at a HOW Design Conference for a fourth time.
PaperSpecs is the first online paper database specifically developed for the design/print industry. This past week they selected Identity Crisis! as the Book of the Week in the site's online Paper Talks newsletter. It's also listed as one of the PaperSpecs suggested books.
Last night I had a very successful Identity Crisis! book signing event at St. Johns Booksellers in North Portland. Owners Liz Dorman and Nena Rawdah hosted the fun evening at their store, located at 8622 N. Lombard in the St. Johns neighborhood.
Following the event, I signed numerous copies of Identity Crisis! and the store now has the books available for purchase. Unfortunately, they don't have website ordering. However, you may visit the store in person, email them at email@example.com, or call (503)283-0032, to place an order or get additional information about the book. As other Portland area bookstores have limited quantities of the volume in stock - or have not yet received orders - St. Johns Booksellers is a great independent bookstore option.
If someone would like a personally inscribed copy, provide the store with the necessary information and I would be happy to stop by and personalize the book before it is shipped out.
For any order over $25 St. Johns Booksellers will ship by USPS media mail for free to Oregon, Washington, and California. (They don't recommend trying media mail for longer distances, because it can take an unreasonably long time and the additional handling is hard on the books.) The UPS ground fee is $6 for the first book, $1.50 for each additional item.
Just Out, the state-wide newsmagazine for the GLBT community, had it's own "identity crisis" two years ago. I was brought in to give the publication an updated and more sophisticated look. Back in 2000 writer Marc Acito wrote a feature story about me for the paper.
I really appreciate the ongoing support of Marty Davis and Just Out.
The Identity Crisis! event starts at 7:30 p.m. at the bookstore, located at 8622 N. Lombard in the St. Johns neighborhood - about 15 minutes north of downtown Portland.
It's been great seeing ads, from my publisher HOW Books (an imprint of F+W Publications), promoting Identity Crisis! in new design industry publications. The ad is in the special Designer's Good Business Guide issue of HOW Magazine and the 2007 PRINT Regional Design Annual.
One of the blogs I check out on a regular basis is PagePlane, an online presence of design industry expert and author Chuck Green. His site Ideabook.com, the tutorials he offers, and his Jumpola design links are incredible resources for anyone in the profession.
If you are a graphic designer who has real-world clients—I suggest you add this book to your toolbox. If you are a business owner or marketer who wants to see how others make over and leverage their identity—Jeff Fisher’s Identity Crisis is a good place to start.
The entire review is available on PagePlane.