15 Top Graphic Design Limericks for your Amusement

Update: After you are done reading the limericks, check out this list of graphic design ebooks, new for 2012 over at The Big List of Lists!

My son nabbed Edward Lear’s Complete Book of Nonsense from the library some time ago. It was one of my favorite books growing up. I wondered if it was possible to write limericks about Graphic Design. I penned some (dare I call it) Graphic Design Poetry and now post the results for your amusement and bemoanment:

Topics include:

  • Clients
  • Typography
  • Designers
  • User Interfaces
  • Adobe


Illustration by Edward Lear, courtesy of Teresa

Illustration by Edward Lear, courtesy of “T”eresa



There once was a graphic designer
Who could not draw a straight liner
Fresh out of school
She thought she was cool
And soon was a cook in a diner!


There once was a trendy typesetter
Who thought “less is more is more better”
“I’ll sit here and scratch
at my tiny soul patch,
Until my design is one letter.”


There once was a UI Designer
Who thought a right-nav was more finer.
But users bemoaned
When they could not find “Home”,
And simply restarted their browser.


There once was a client so wiley
He asked for every source filey.
He’d edit them twice
And say “Now they’re nice!”
And we’d stare at him with a blank smiley


There once was a designer so immature
She had not yet heard of a ligature.
She’d kern “f” and “i”
And then make a sigh
While wishing for one nice clean character.


There was an “Adobe Updater”
Who’s button said “Update me later”.
Whenever we’d work,
It popped up like a jerk.
And so we are “Updater” haters!


A prominent button called “Home”
Caused UI elitists to foam.
“It should not be there!”
And they tore out their hair,
Then banged their heads on a big stone.


In Dreamweaver there was a bug,
But Adobe was silently smug.
“Pretend it’s not there!”
Said support with no care,
And swept the bug under the rug!


There once was a client so bozo
He thought he’d design his own logo.
He did it in raster,
And thought it was faster
Because bezier curves he did not know.


There once was client so lame
He flipped when he saw a wireframe
“The graphics are sparse,
And your firm is a farse!”
But we knew that this man did have no brain.


There once was a program called Freehand
It was the best tool in the whole land
But the software was sold
To Adobe the bold
And Freehand was soon no more at hand.


A designer with senses so fickle
He felt every unaligned pixel
“It’s off by a bit!
What are you a twit?”
And for lunch he ate ought but sour pickles.


There once was a blogging designer
Who said “I will sooner retire!
I’ll write blogs all day,
And sip my latte.”
But soon found his finances goner.


A program called Photo the Shopper
Was loaded with menus and slopper
“Just raise the price
to make naughty nice”
But users soon proved this a flopper.


Adobe the Great was a giant
To whom all it’s slaves was defiant:
“While charging more price,
I’ll make things less nice!”
And to this day all are compliant.


  1. says

    I like to have fun with this stuff. I love the Catholic Charities fold-out piece on your site – super clever! Do you do “Catholic Marketing”? An entire post on Catholic or Christian marketing would be very interesting! We created a sub-brand called Handmaid Studio, but found that marketing in the Catholic sphere is more than challenging 😉 : http://www.handmaidstudio.com

  2. says

    I like the “vocation” at handmaid. Interesting word choice, too, for a Catholic site since vocation typically refers to the priesthood.

    I don’t do Catholic marketing. I keep my eye out for good marketing, and poo-poo the bad stuff. And I try to do all of this from a faith perspective.

    I’ve been following your stuff since David Airey posted his hilarious logo design tutorial.

    Keep up the good work!

  3. says

    “Beauty is the vocation bestowed on the artist by the Creator in the gift of ‘artistic talent’…. ”

    That is the sense in which we use the term “vocation”, which is a quote from Pope John Paul II’s “Letter to Artists” from 1999


    I have heard, and agree, there is no such thing as a Catholic, or a Christian, or a Pagan artist – only good or bad art :) I would agree, though one can find a niche that might be very narrow indeed.

    I had a lot of fun on that logo tutorial, or rather, my little addendum to it. I also like to laugh at my own jokes, which is a problem, but I’m working on it.

  4. says

    “I have heard, and agree, there is no such thing as a Catholic, or a Christian, or a Pagan artist – only good or bad art :) I would agree, though one can find a niche that might be very narrow indeed.”

    I hear and agree with both parts of this statement.

    Thanks for the link.

  5. says

    True :)

    In addition I’m an updater-restarter hater. Mac users probably don’t have that problem, but Windows is killing me with this.

    So many hours of work lost because of this dreaded “feature”.

  6. says

    A quick thanks to nicktalop, Amol, and Web Ideas for sharing your thoughts! I think this is the single biggest day for BonFX.com yet – I’m glad it was for a fun post.

    Thanks of course go to Smashing Magazine and other twitterers (sp?) who spread the word.

  7. says

    I just came across this over at Swiss-Miss (http://www.swiss-miss.com/2009/11/design-limericks-for-your-amusement.html) about my golden verses:

    There once was a Limerick writer,
    Whose poems couldn’t be tighter.
    His ideas were all class,
    Until he tried to pass,
    ‘Browser’ as rhyming with ‘finer’

    But I retorted:

    There once was a dour commenter,
    Whos time could not be better spenter.
    He picked at my verse,
    In a mood that was terse,
    While ignoring his own sloppy meter!


    All in good humor of course!

  8. says

    ROTFLOL ’till his knees hurt
    One reader even made a small pee squirt
    He thought for a while
    Then said with a smile
    “What I need is this verse on my T-shirt”

  9. Dyann Espinosa says

    I somehow acquired the Complete Book of Nonsense when I was in grammar school. I loved it and must have read the limericks hundreds of times. I lost it along the way and then as an adult (or at least when I was older) found it in a bookstore and have it to this day.
    Thanks for continuing the fun with your clever new versions!
    Cheers, Dyann

  10. says

    Hi Dyann. I too came across it in grammar school, during “library time”. I loved the drawings as much, if not more, than the limericks. I found Lear’s irreverent and silly drawings very modern, in a certain sense. I didn’t think people back in the 19th century drew, much less conceived, such silliness. It has crossed my mind to illustrate these, but the to do list is rather long these days!

  11. says

    Doug, I Love this:
    There once was client so lame
    He flipped when he saw a wireframe
    “The graphics are sparse,
    And your firm is a farse!”
    But we knew that this man did have no brain.

    Experiencing it every time I meet a client.

    Shabbir Hussain – Zahab Creativity

  12. says

    Hi Shabbir: I can’t tell you how many times I have heard “is it going to look like that?” and “what is all the latin and greek – is that going to change?”. I suppose they are valid questions if a client has never gone through a web design process before!

  13. says

    I once had a wearer of inserts,
    who would only wear them in short spurts.
    I said “It’s no wonder,
    Your corns are a-thunder,
    You’ll just have to wear boots with your skirts!”


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