David Carson

Type designer
David Carson is the "grunge typographer" whose magazine Ray Gun helped explode the possibilities of text on a page.

Why you should listen

David Carson's boundary-breaking typography in the 1990s, in Ray Gun magazine and other pop-cult books, ushered in a new vision of type and page design -- quite simply, breaking the traditional mold of type on a page and demanding fresh eyes from the reader. Squishing, smashing, slanting and enchanting the words on a layout, Carson made the point, over and over, that letters on a page are art. You can see the repercussions of his work to this day, on a million Flash intro pages (and probably just as many skateboards and T-shirts).

His first book, with Lewis Blackwell and a foreword by David Byrne, is The End of Print, and he's written or collaborated on several others, including the magisterial Book of Probes, an exploration of the thinking of Marshall McLuhan. His latest book is Trek, a collection of his recent work.

David Carson’s TED talks

Quotes from David Carson

You have to utilize who you are in your work. Nobody else can do that: nobody else can pull from your background, from your parents, your upbringing, your whole life experience.
David Carson
TED2003 • 560K views Jan 2009
Funny, Inspiring