Aesthetics communicate value and
design shapes the experience.

I Love NY – the story behind the logo

Milton told me that if I stayed three years in New York City I would never leave. He was right. After nineteen years my growing family finally moved out of the city to Greensboro. But we still have hundreds of friends there and lots of sofas, and I have shared office space in the Film Center on 9th Avenue.

This wonderful video tells the story Milton told me so many times and in so many ways of how passionate he was about the city and how he came to design probably the most famous logo in the world, the I love NY logo.

9/11 I Love NY More Than Ever

I love NY more than ever poster

I was in the studio when the towers were hit. Colleagues arriving after me were going straight to their computers to see what the news was reporting. It was surreal. We were all dazed and unsure of what was happening. Milton kept us calm and distracted us until he thought it was safe for us to head home.

After 9/11 Milton wanted to have a response to help unify the city. He had been at home thinking about it. He explained it felt like when you nearly loose someone that you love and miraculously they survive and you feel overwhelmingly that you love them more than ever. That was what he wanted to express about New York. We all felt we had almost lost it and now needed to wrap around it and pull together to survive the crisis.

I took his sketch and recreated it carefully, first the smudge to go on the lower left of the heart (where the towers were on the island) and then the  MORE THAN EVER lettering to sit below the famous logo. Milton called the NY Post and they agreed to print it as the front and back cover so that it was a poster that everyone could stick it in their window. Milton also printed some of his own posters and asked students of SVA to volunteer their time and hand them out all around the city.

Milton has always believed most passionately that it is our responsibility as designers to help our communities and improve society and the world. That is what he taught. That is what he lived by.