#9: A Half Dozen Design Movies You Need in Your Life

Half Dozen Design Movies

Admittedly, the last few weeks’ posts have been pretty intense. So this week I decided to do something different. There are over 20 movies/documentaries/tv shows that I love, like, and am inspired by. Today’s list is a half dozen of my favorites, in no particular order. Movies on everything from graffiti art to gig poster design. I hope you’ll invest some time watching some amazing creatives do what they do. I guarantee you will want to go out immediately and create something even more awesome for yourself!

Art & Copy

Art & Copy [Documentary]


This film is an entertaining look at the world of design and advertising, highlighting some of the most famous advertising campaigns. Art & Copy will give you a glimpse into the creators and dreamers who end up in commercial design. It gives you a lot of different angles by which to view advertising—from social impact to human emotion to commerce—in an engaging way. You will find yourself immersed and wondering how an hour and a half went by so quickly-it’s good times.

Released: 2009     Time You’ll Invest Watching It: 89 Minutes     Where to Find It: http://www.artandcopyfilm.org

Being There

Just Like Being There [Documentary]


Just as with every other movie on this list, I could watch this one over and over and catch something new each time; and I have. This film documents the artists, illustrators, and designers who special in Gig Posters (posters for bands/concerts/events). Not only does it feature some of the best posters/artists but it also makes sure to give a bit of the history of gig posters as well as showing some different techniques used to make them. The fusion of graphics influenced directly by music the way it is on a gig poster is unlike any other type of design. I promise you’ll love this one.

Released: 2012     Time You’ll Invest Watching It: 90 Minutes

Where to Find It: Netflix Streaming


Helvetica [Indie Short Film]


Helvetica is the story of one of the most loved and most hated fonts. It is filled with interviews from designers, creative directors, and type designers from all over the world. It goes from the very beginnings and the story of how it was made to its modern use and everything in between. Whether you love typography, you’re new to the design world, or you don’t know what the fuss is about either way, this movie is worth your time.

Released: 2007     Time You’ll Invest: 80 Minutes

Where to Find It: Netflix Streaming

Sign Painters

Sign Painters [Documentary]


Sign Painters takes a look at the almost lost art of hand painted signage and the dedicated artists who do it. When the vinyl printing industry came into existence these jobs were almost all lost. Sign Painters is a meaningful look at the painters, what they do, how they do it, and why they still do it, even in the age of digital well, everything… It will make you wonder how you can become a sign painter yourself.

Released: 2014     Time You’ll Invest: 120 Minutes

Where to Find It: http://www.signpaintersfilm.com/#watch

Design is One

Design is One: The Vignellis [Documentary/Biography]


Massimo and Lella Vignellis are two of the worlds most incredible designers. They are so endearing and I really enjoyed watching this movie. From furniture, jewelry and architecture, to corporate branding and publishing and even flatware design, their influence is everywhere. Massimo has so many famous design quotes about the industry that you see in this film. They are a tremendously inspiring couple and if you care anything at all about the history of a couple who have been a huge part of the design industry, then you will definitely want to watch this.
Released: 2012     Time You’ll Invest: 86 Minutes
Where to Find It: Netflix Streaming


Exit Through the Gift Shop [Documentary/Comedy]


This is an interesting one. The majority of the footage is taken by a Frenchman who is trying to get in with graffiti artists in an attempt to befriend elusive street artist Banksy. The way it all turns out is a bit meta but it is definitely a really cool look at street artists and the underlying culture they live and work in. I warn you that you’re going to want to try it out for yourself by the time you’re through.

Released: 2010     Time You’ll Invest: 87 Minutes     

Where to Find It: Netflix Streaming


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