Doyald Young R.I.P.

kegler's picture
david h's picture

Really sad.

hrant's picture

Very sad news.
He was as skilled, competent and eloquent as we has kind, generous and humble.


Stephen Rapp's picture

I had just seen this on FB as well. He will truly be missed by both type designers and lettering artists.

eliason's picture

I'm grateful to the SoTA people for organizing the tribute at TypeCon last summer. It was a real pleasure to see him talk about his life and his work.

kentlew's picture

This is sad news indeed. And I’m especially sorry now that I was unable to attend TypeCon in Los Angeles last year to meet with Doyald one last time. As others have said, he was a kind and generous man. I will treasure the few interactions and correspondences we did have.

Stefan H's picture

Very sad to hear this. He was a true type hero to me. I often show people his great work.

dezcom's picture

A true gentleman and a great type and lettering legend. Glad I got to spend some time with him in LA and at his book signing.

Nick Shinn's picture

I was very impressed by his tale (at TypeCon Buffalo?) of how he got into the business, IIRC he rode the rods to the West coast during the depression and ended up at school there learning lettering by making drawings from big specimen letters of Caslon. Some element of chance, walking down the street, figured into it too. Did I get that right, or is it just a romantic memory?

Tell's picture

I just loaned my copy of Dangerous Curves to a friend, and two days later he writes me asking if I knew he'd passed away. This is a sad loss.

.00's picture

Doyald and I became good friends over the last ten years. I miss him terribly, his phone calls with that wonderful voice greeting me "Hello James".

Nick, the story he told me was while he was working the rails he entered a fashion illustration contest and won a prize to take classes at Art Center. I may have a few detail amiss, but that is what I recall.

Nick Shinn's picture

Thanks James.

He certainly had the touch of class and glamour of the lettering virtuoso.

tamye's picture

The time I was lucky enough to spend talking with Doyald is something I will always treasure. He was a dear, sweet man, and an incredibly gifted artist. We have lost someone special. I will never forget him.

Frank ADEBIAYE's picture

Gathering all fellow information, it would be not that difficult to build an ebook dedicated to Doyald Young, what do you think?

hrant's picture



dezcom's picture

Pencil drawing?

PabloImpallari's picture

"for the love of the letters"
Rest In Peace Doyald

Every time we'll see a cloud shaped like a letter, we will know that's you up there

davidnwca's picture

Please take a moment to watch the documentary about Doyald, recently screened at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, and now available to everyone at:

It was an honor and a pleasure to have had the opportunity to spend time with Doyald during production of this film. His passing this week has touched us all deeply.

David Niles White
Producer, Documentaries

twardoch's picture

I’ve had the great pleasure of meeting Doyald Young on a few occasions: at Hermann Zapf’s 87th birthday in 2005, at the TypeCon conference in Buffalo, NY in 2008, and again at TypeCon in Los Angeles last year. I’ve exchanged some wonderful e-mails with him over the years.

Once, he most kindly drew a custom logo for my then-girlfriend’s jewelry brand — as a gesture of appreciation for my bit of assistance with the production of his fonts. Doyald could draw the sexiest letterforms. To me, they were a perfect embodiment of femininity. This somewhat surprised me when I realized that Doyald preferred Michelangelo’s David over Venus de Milo. But perhaps this should not be surprising. Grace, finesse and beauty are of in any way to be confined to clichés.

Doyald Young has authored several books: “Logotypes & Letterforms” (1993), ,“Fonts & Logos” (1999) and “Dangerous Curves: Mastering Logotype Design” (2008). He was working on his next book about the lettering of the English formal script, although I am not sure whether he managed to finish it.

It was due to his “Dangerous Curves” book that I came up with a stunt at the TypeCon 2010 conference in Los Angeles. At the same hotel venue as the conference, a Playboy charitable event was being held. So after the presentation of the SoTA Award to Doyald, I’ve grabbed him and escorted him to the stand where the Playboy bunnies were accepting donations, and arranged an impromptu photoshoot of Doyald, his “Dangerous Curves” book and, well, some “dangerous curves” of a different kind.

I think Doyald did not quite appreciate the stunt at the beginning. I apologized to him, and he explained to me that it was not him but Stefan Bucher suggested the title of the book — “as in Gina Lollobrigida”, Stefan said. Doyald himself felt that “as for the stunt, I thought that I’d be a sport and do it, though on reflection I see no value in it for me. I’m stuffy and conservative and not much interested in camp, irony, or wit. I hope that my book is now not seen a manual of sex.”

I’m certain that this will never be the case. When I wrote to Doyald that I saw the value of the stunt in contrasting the cheap and superficial Playboy bunny outfits that so unsuccessfully aspired to be “dangerous curves” with the true beauty and mastery delivered by Doyald, he did, after all, agree, and laughed about it.

After meeting Doyald on several occasions, I cannot concur with his own estimation of being “stuffy” and “not much interested in irony or wit”. I think he was just too modest — yet when talking to him, I could see a person who was full of warm-hearted humor, great positive energy, and true talent which was so deservedly and widely appreciated.

As already mentioned in this thread, recently made a 40-minutes documentary about Doyald Young. It’s beautifully shot, and certainly worth watching (non-native English speakers are encouraged to turn on the “CC” subtitles). Here’s the video:

I also recommend reading the piece that Doyald’s good friend Marian Bantjes wrote about him:

Thank you, Doyald, for your wit, your wisdom, your attention to detail, and all the dangerous curves you have discovered and presented to all of us.

— Adam Twardoch in Berlin on March 9, 2011

sfolden85's picture

Does anybody have an information on Doyald's latest book "Learning Curves," will it be published or was it incomplete? Such a great typographer I would love to learn from his book.

dezcom's picture

The book was published and readily available a couple of years ago. I bought my copy from Doyald directly, but I assume it is sold elsewhere.

Here is Amazon link:

.00's picture

Doyald was working on another book, post "Dangerous Curves" but I have no idea of its status.

rosaiani's picture

I have bought the books recently through delphi press and even though it took them some time to log in to their account and acknowledge my order, it seems to be on its way to Brazil.

Looking forward to learning from this amazing master.

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