Doyald Young 1926-2011

Doyald Young

I learned this evening from a friend that Doyald Young passed away yesterday at the age of 84. I had the pleasure of meeting him twice — once when we both spoke at a design conference in 2007, and again in 2009 when he received the AIGA Medal in New York [read his acceptance speech]. I may have been a precocious young turk, but I was reverent and attentive in his presence.

Although the design world has lost one of its great practitioners, and those who were close to him have lost a loving friend, family member and partner, Doyald leaves behind an enduring and indelible legacy.

Doyald’s lettering skills were unrivaled. His masterful hand crafted logotypes and trademarks for Henry Dreyfuss, UCLA, Mattel, Vidal Sassoon, Carnegie Hall, The Grammy’s, The Golden Globes, and the Tony Awards, among many, many others, will long endure. He designed logos for Frank Sinatra and Prince, corporate typefaces for GE and Prudential, elegant wine labels for CF Napa, a handful of commercially-available typefaces, and countless other projects, each possessed of the same grace and thoughtfulness that characterize their creator.

Through his books, his writing, his craft, his teaching, and his example, Doyald Young has made a lasting contribution to the profession we are privileged to share with him. His passing leaves it a little bit emptier, though his achievements certainly leave it richer.