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The continuous learning process is something every aspiring graphic designer needs to accept in order for them to grow professionally. While creativity does come naturally, furthering your education is a must for staying competitive and relevant in the industry.

Sure, you can enroll in graphic design courses, but most new skills– both technical and interpersonal– are often self-taught. To get you started, here are 5 awesome must-read books for graphic designers and creative minds:

1. Creative Strategy & The Business Of Design – Douglas Davis

Creative Strategy and the Business of Design is an amazing resource, as it bridges the gap between creativity and business professionalism. A lot of the concepts in this book are rarely taught in courses, so check it out if you’re struggling with the business side of the industry!

2. Thinking With Type – Ellen Lupton

Ellen Lupton is perhaps one of the most influential people of modern-day typography. She truly knows what she’s talking about. She has written many books on typography alone, which is something I, and many other designers, have often struggled with. Thinking with Type is a MUST-READ for graphic designers interested in enhancing their typography skills!

3. Draplin Design Co. : Pretty Much Everything – Aaron James Draplin 

I cannot even describe how much I recommend Draplin Design Co. : Pretty Much Everything. Aaron Draplin of Draplin Design Co. is a pioneer in the graphic design field, and this book has pretty much everything about his story and role as a designer. I often browse through this book just for inspiration alone, his style is simply beautiful!

4. The Design Of Everyday Things – Don Norman 

While The Design of Everyday Things is certainly the oldest of the bunch, it still holds up today. It’s a standard for any introductory design course, and it provides fascinating insights into how psychology and design intertwine – or in some cases disagree.

5. How To Be A Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul – Adrian Shaughnessy

While the title for How to Be a Graphic Designer without Losing Your Soul is a bit of a running joke in the graphic design field, the content is truly helpful for aspiring designers. This book is full of practical advice and guidance for designers of all breadths of work. In this crazy digital world, this is another one of my must-read books for graphic designers that are struggling to find their place in this competitive industry.

Even if you’re not a designer, go ahead and check out these must-read books for graphic designers and creative minds. They all accomplish different things, but all of them are extremely useful if you wish to grow as a professional, or want a better grasp of the challenges of the creative process.

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