I first heard of John Grey after reading an article about the agency he set up, representing a portfolio of independent graphic designers.
I thought I should give him a call and six months later, in 1987, sharing the same philosophy, we launched Halpin Grey Vermeir with Geoff Halpin.
A few weeks later, we won the National Union of Teachers corporate identity job. John’s involvement in securing the project was vital and, of course, contributed to building the reputation of the consultancy.
John entered the design world as a self-taught entrepreneur. His understanding of what good visual communication is about gained the admiration of clients and designers who worked with us. He was such a good communicator. He was mainly in charge of the strategic side of the business, but for John, the creative input was equally important and was his real passion.
Outside the office, John dedicated part of his time to a charity called Media Natura. His vision and commitment made him chairman of the company. In 1995, John took control of Media Natura full-time and naturally our working lives separated.
John died of cancer on 17 March this year aged 43. He leaves a lovely wife and baby daughter. I shall miss his intelligence, his wit and his friendship.