LESTER BEALL

The way a man lives is to the work 
he produces. essential
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1. About
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A man with a very technology-oriented background, Beall grew up playing with Ham radios and creating his own wireless sets. He graduated with a Ph.D in the History of Fine Art and the years following his graduation found him expressing an interest in modern art movements such as Surrealism, Constructivism and Dadaism. His work as an advertiser and graphic designer quickly gained international recognition and the most productive years of his career, during the 1930s and 40s, saw many successes in both fields. His clear and concise use of typography was highly praised both in the United Statexs and abroad. Throughout his career he used bold primary colors and illustrative arrows and lines in a graphic style that became easily recognizable as his own. He eventually moved to rural New York and set up an office, and home, at a premises that he and his family called "Dumbarton Farm". He remained at the farm until his
 death in 1969.

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beall used arrows, geometric shapes, lines and bold primary colors as the main elements on his designs.

S tyle
2. arrows
3. geometric shapes
4. lines
5. primary colors
“Applied good taste is a mark of good citizenship. Ugliness is a form of anarchy.. ugly cities, ugly advertising, ugly lives produce bad citizens.”
6. Inspiration

A more complex photographic technique is used on the cover of What's New, a house organ of Abbott

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Laboratories.

This image from  1939 shows a complex integration of photographic and graphic elements, set in a scale which juxtaposes the size relationships of foreground  and background.

Photography was a lifelong interest to Beall and an important part of his creative process. He experimented with photography and photographic processes almost from the beginning of his career in design in Chicago. Cameras, a photographic studio and a darkroom were always necessary for his visual experiments. In the '30s he had seen the experimental photographic work of the European avant- garde designers such as Herbert Bayer, El Lissitzky, and Lazlo Moholy-Nagy. Beall would experiment regularly with photograms, and with straight photography both in and out of the studio. Even today, many of Beall's photographic images remain unusual and innovative visual experiments. Beall carried his camera with him on all his travels. These images formed an image bank from which he drew inspiration for his lectures. Others found their way into direct graphic design application for his clients such as in the cover for ORS, a journal for health services professionals. He remarked, “all experience in fields directly or indirectly related to design must be absorbed and stored up, to provide the inspirational source that guides, nourishes and enriches the idea-flow of the designer.” Beall's own interests in other art forms provided further stimulus to his immense curiosity and creativity. Dorothy Beall wrote that Lester “believed that anyone interested in design must necessarily be interested in other fields of expression—the theatre, ballet, photography, painting, literature, as well as music, for from any of these the alert designer can at times obtain not only ideas related to his advertising problem, but genuine inspiration.” He remarked, “all experience in fields directly or indirectly related to design must be absorbed and stored up, to provide the inspirational source that guides, nourishes and enriches the idea-flow of the designer.” Beall's own interests in other art forms provided further stimulus to his immense curiosity and creativity. Dorothy Beall wrote that Lester “believed that anyone interested in design must necessarily be interested in other fields of expression—the theatre, ballet, photography, painting, literature, as well as music, for from any of these the alert designer can at times obtain not only ideas related to his advertising problem, but genuine inspiration.”

He remarked, “all experience in fields directly or indirectly related to design must be absorbed and stored up, to provide the inspirational source that guides, nourishes and enriches the idea-flow of the designer.” Beall's own interests in other art forms provided further stimulus to his immense curiosity and creativity. Dorothy Beall wrote that Lester “believed that anyone interested in design must necessarily be interested in other fields of expression—the theatre, ballet, photography, painting, literature, as well as music, for from any of these the alert designer can at times obtain not only ideas related to his advertising problem, but genuine inspiration.” His books and periodicals were another great source of inspiration for Beall. He collected books and periodicals seriously from the beginning of his design career in Chicago. By the Sixties, Beall had accumulated a major personal collection of publications on creative forms such  as art, design, photography and architecture. He also collected seminal magazines such as Cahiers d'Art and rare volumes such as the famous Bauhausbucher. Music was another important ingredient of Beall's creative environment. He was very familiar with jazz, having grown up with it in Chicago. While working in his studio there in the mid-'20s, he would often listen  to live broadcasts on radio. Throughout his life, he would surround himself with music, be it jazz, or the classical compositions of Europeans such as Stravinsky, Prokofiev and Shostakovich.

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