🎧 82. Paula Scher
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I used to idolize famous people a bit. I guess that’s pretty normal. But if there’s one thing that I’ve learned from making this show it’s that we’re all just human, more or less normal people like you and me, and the thing that distinguishes us is not who we are but what we do. One person that I’ve always looked up is my guest today, one of the most famous graphic designers in the world, Paula Scher.
Paula’s book Make It Bigger was actually the very first design book I ever bought. She has designed hundreds of record covers, has become one of the biggest names in identity design, and has found a new challenge in designing signage for some very iconic buildings. Since the 90s she is partner at Pentagram, the world's largest independent design consultancy and she has also made quite a splash as an artist with her very elaborate, large-scale, hand drawn maps.
We talked about her background, her relationship with her parents, about the the record cover that haunts her, about the wildly successful children’s book she wrote in the beginning of her career, about the story of Pentagram, about being a female designer, and about being a fuck-up.
👤 My guest today:
5:47 – Paula's background
13:17 – About her education and her mentor Stanislav Sigorski
17:25 – The Boston cover that haunts her https://www.creativebloq.com/news/boston-album-art
20:40 – My conversation with Stefan Sagmeister https://ohnedenhype.com/podcast/stefan-sagmeister-designer/
21:57 – Her children's book ‘The Brownstone’ https://www.pentagram.com/news/the-brownstone-1
25:36 – Her job at Random House
29:02 – The time at the record labels
37:25 – Koppel & Scher with the late Terry Koppel
44:28 – The story of Pentagram
50:50 – Michael Beirut https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Bierut
52:32 – Being a female designer
55:17 – About being a fuck-up
56:26 – Paula's husband Seymour Chwast https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seymour_Chwast
58:35 – Her work for the Public Theatre https://www.pentagram.com/work/the-public-theater/story
1:04:31 – How she got into environmental graphics
1:12:47 – Paula's maps https://www.pentagram.com/news/paula-scher-maps
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