Online and Desktop Publishing

Professional quality design at home or work

We assembled this site after reading what was available for in-house designers. These sites were too vague or too detailed. The sites that explained design principles well gave few examples. Sites with great examples gave shallow explanations of what made the featured designs work. The site you are now reading represents our best efforts to balance details with usability.

For the novice designer, we offer proven advice with specific instructions. Intermediate designers receive explanations of theories and how to put these theories to work. Advanced designers can appreciate the finer details we have included on fonts, layout grids, and commercial printing.

As you read this site, experiment along with us. This site is meant to be educational and fun — not a mere reference.


Most pages are incomplete, as we migrate the contents from a printed manuscript to the Web. Pages at the “draft” stage are indicated with an asterisk (*), while others are being formatted as time permits. None of the pages are “finished.”


A site of this nature is only useful if it facilitates quickly locating information. Sections are as concise as possible, without sacrificing depth.

Foundations of Design

Computers and Commercial Printing

Newsletters and Brochures

Long Documents

  • Types of Books
  • Planning
  • End Results
  • Catalogs

Developing an Image

Ads, Flyers, and Posters

  • Advertising
  • Flyers
  • Posters

Electronic Media

  • Websites
  • Online Help
  • Presentations

Foundations of Design

We begin with brief explanations of the terms, concepts, and theories used throughout this book. This section does not discuss complete documents, but rather the building blocks of all documents.

Computers and Commercial Printing

Computers make in-house design – and this site – possible. The information in these chapters help determine how you prepare documents.

Developing an Image

Logos, business cards, and letterheads are the staples of business communication. Because of the fundamental nature of these documents, we use them as the starting point.

Flyers and Posters

Single-page designs are among the most complex. Look at great posters and you will understand how important typography, art work, and layout are to the effectiveness of a complete design.


Often the first project of an in-house designer, newsletters appear deceptively simple. With complex grids, multiple fonts, and difficult artwork choices, newsletters and other medium-length documents pose serious challenges.

Long Documents

Manuals and catalogs outlive other documents by days or even months. Their longevity requires that they convey your identity better than other business documents. Thankfully, these documents are based on repetition, making them much simpler to design than shorter publications.

Trademarks and Rights

Throughout this site, we refer to products and designs that are not our property. These references are meant only to be informational. We do not represent the companies mentioned and were not paid promotional fees. However, if these companies would like to send us evaluation copies of future products, we would be thrilled.

References to products are not endorsements, but reflect our opinions in some cases. Computer software products mentioned are the property of their respective publishers. Instead of attempting to list every software publishers and brand, or including trademark symbols throughout this book, we assume that you know these product and brand names are protected under U.S. and international laws. Fonts and designs are the intellectual property of the design artists. Although U.S. copyright laws do not protect font designs, we consider them to be the property of the designers and licensing agencies.


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Writer: C. S. Wyatt
Updated: 21-Oct-2017
Editor: S. D. Schnelbach