RIP John Geary – illustrator, artist and a very dear friend.

A note to mark the passing of John Geary. 

John was an illustrator and artist of exceptional talent – and a very dear friend.

John’s magic (as that is only how it can be described) has for over 25+ years been the quiet hand behind countless design and branding agencies, producing illustration, icons and marks for brands such as Johnnie Walker, Chivas Regal, Coca-cola, Nike, Russian Standard and Levi Strauss to name but a very, very few. 

I think design/branding community is only just waking up to how big a hole John will leave behind.

His only tools were his pencils, pens and paper – yet the magic and wonder he produced with them, made it feel like Christmas every single time you opened one of John’s envelopes.

I first met John when I asked him to draw me two female runners for Nike, one to be made of leaves and other from ice, based on my crappiest of crappy sketches. Only two days later the black and white line drawings arrived. It was the first of my many ‘magical’ John moments – each was beautifully drawn with such lightness of touch, detailing and movement that you could not help but feel very, very humbled by his talent.

John was one most talented and gentlest of souls I have known – and I him miss so very much already.

RIP John, it was my incredible privilege to have known and worked with you.


For those that knew John you can leave your messages here

Nike poster designed by Dana Robertson, illustration by John Geary