When discussing ‘great’ British designers, the same handful of names tend to pop up again and again. Alan Fletcher, Peter Saville, Neville Brody… We all know these names and the canon of work they’ve produced over the years and, with good reason, we admire them.
Recently however, a less familiar face has emerged from the shadows, a designer who has been a hugely important part of the British graphic design industry for 50 years. The name John Lloyd will be one the majority of designers haven’t heard of but the body of work he has quietly been amassing over the years and can now be found in a new online archive showing the fruits of his illustrious career.
Lloyd created the distinctive repeating stripe pattern for John Lewis, which has arguably become more iconic than the logo itself.
Starting his career in 1965 at the London College of Printing, Lloyd gained the necessary experience at Allied International Designers before founding his own agency Lloyd Northover alongside former LCP student Jim Northover in 1975. The company has grown significantly over the last 35 years and now has offices in London, Barcelona, Dubai, Hong Kong and Singapore. During this time, they’ve created some of the most long lasting identity designs around today including work for The University of Essex, Financial Services Authority, Morphy Richards and National Savings & Investments amongst many others.
One of the things that differentiates John Lloyd from many other designers is his lack of self promotion. Less of a ‘designers designer’ with much more focus on the client and results, his work through the years has pushed creativity and garnered plenty of praise, but the aim of his work was never to ‘show off’ or gain acceptance from his peers. A refreshing attitude in the awards-hungry climate of today’s industry.
Lloyds work for BAA shows an understanding of the importance of reductive design which can last the test of time.
The recently launched www.johnlloyd.uk.com is purely an archive of the work rather than a promotional tool. To quote John Lloyd on the homepage of his site ‘This website isn’t here to sell anything; its purpose is to provide a selective record of my work as a graphic designer and creative director, and to share some reflections on graphic design and branding practice’
A new set of icons and typeface were developed for the National Rail signage system.
Another project for National Rail saw Lloyd creating bespoke icons for individual stations. Shown here; Paddington, Glasgow, Charing Cross and Edinburgh
I highly recommend spending some time looking through Lloyds inspirational body of work and reading the recently conducted interview with Creative Review. Lloyd Northover are continuing to produce some great work which can be viewed here.
We’re glad to be able to shine the spotlight on one of our unsung heroes of design and hope you enjoyed reading.