Vignelli’s Subway Map

The article that stood out to me from this collection was “Mr. Vignelli’s Map.” Perhaps this is because I am from New York and I have witnessed first hand the absolute chaos that the city encompasses. But the aspects of design discussed here are what really intrigue me.

I couldn’t think of a more difficult design endeavor than taking a city like New York and graphically representing it as something to be understood by the masses. The more I learn about design, the more appreciation I have for it. And the more I have grown an even bigger appreciation for simplistic design. It is so much easier said than done to display information simply but still beautifully and attractively. I think Mr. Vignelli’s deign of the subway map does just that. I appreciated many aspects of his design – especially the simple use of dots to signify stop and of color to signify different train lines.

However, what was interesting about this article is that it points to the biggest obstacles of simplistic design. A lot of the issues came with designing accurately – especially for audiences not already familiar with NYC, which is quite obviously a substantial amount of people. I think that it is important to find a common ground between simplicity and the amount of information displayed. It is so clear that designers need to think outside the box in order to make decisions on what information they choose to include in design, and also how simple is too simple.

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