The History of Graphics Design

Graphics Design

Graphics Design

Graphics design started when man chalked his first word. The earliest canvases used were caves and caverns. Graphic design was birthed, nourished and coaxed through paintings, raw markings on bone and ivory and doodles on boulders. The term graphic design was coined by William Addison Dwiggins in the beginning of the 20th century.

Paleontologists have pinpointed the approximate age when our ancestors used designs and symbols as a means of communication. It was between forty thousand and ten thousand B.C. Hence we can say that the pioneers of graphic design are none other than our long dead ancestors.

Early graphic designs

The earliest drawings known to man have been dated to about six thousand years ago. Designs were made on stone and pottery. The drawings, symbols and hieroglyphs found in the Egyptian pyramids date to about five thousand years ago and represent graphic designs of that time.

A new era dawned upon graphic design when geometric shapes were introduced in Europe. These played a major part in developing sketching and drawing. A good example of graphic design using arranged images and text is the Bible written by hand, known simply as the “Book of Kells”, by early Irish monks in the ninth century A.D.

Early printing and publishing

Re-using individual letters when printing was the brain child of a German inventor and metal worker. The very first book introduced by the Gutenberg press was called the “Incunabula” This book became the benchmark in book publishing and printing, and was a huge leap for the printing industry. However block stamping upon wet sheets of paper with text and symbols carved on the underside of the block, was used long before the fourteenth century.

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