This was a note I sent to Bill before he passed … it summed it up for me. I attempted some levity and optimism, no closure here —his gifts and wisdom live on.
Hi Bill (and Karin),
I hear you are in quite a fight. I’m glad you are back in our adopted sunny California. In fact, I was talking to a young designer today, reminiscing, and I found myself telling him about how your phone call back in the summer of 1987 is the reason I am out here. Then, how fate would take it from there — now, finding myself with a beautiful family and a nifty way of making a living from home … yeah, I did say “nifty” :-)
I also told him about your advice to ‘disconnect’ as a problem solver, and about how generous you were in the creative process — both have helped me to be better over the years. You also always managed to find a skill or trait to hail in people. I enjoyed being called on by you, even just for some nice sketches.
Then, upon leaving IDEO, when I was seeking my less ambitious path, you had some encouraging words: “a balanced life is its own reward” … which is practically my motto now. (Well that, and … “never waste a good opportunity to nap”.)
Thinking of you.
Your loyal employee and friend,
submitted by Chris Loew
In the summer of 1973 as a product design graduate straight from college I was offered a design assistant job with Bill Morridge Associates then in Bills house in Dartmouth Park Road North London. Very over-awed I was welcomed into the group and the family by Bill and Karin. The design rigour and beliefs that Bill communicated has stayed with me since then and his world wide influence and achievements are as inimitable and far reaching as his imagination. He is a real design hero…thank you Bill
submitted by Peter Hill
I had the pleasure of meeting Bill when I worked at IDEO. I’ve always remembered the conversations we had about this, that and the other while I was getting the printers connected for him. He always had time for a kind smile and cheerful greeting. Thank you, Bill.
submitted by Chris Van Ness
He set up the bar high. His humble beautiful soul will be forever remembered. So many designers look up to him. Of course I think of you. I think of you when I see Wall-E collecting objects, discovering them, surprised but the world around him, his input always unique.
submitted by Claudia
I never met Bill but so enjoyed his segment within the Objectified documentary DVD. It was so obvious the delight he found on a daily basis with the world around him. Especially items like his Ettore Sottsass spoon, Japanese plastic fish and his ancient pickup truck. It seemed obvious he and David Kelly would follow a similar design path. I love to turn on my fellow design colleagues to Bill’s work, especially when opening their laptop.
submitted by Dudley Fisher
I had the pleasure of meeting Bill while I was a design student at Virginia Tech in 2006. We had the best time while he was visiting. That was special. What a guy.
submitted by Tina
Was fortunate to meet Bill in LA in 2004 while interviewing him for a part of my Fulbright thesis on the role of education in design, the d-school, the ‘new’ and much needed design education. We talked a lot about designers being built as a ‘T’ – vertical skills and horizontal communication. A bridge between disciplines. He was a gentle giant, never boasting and always on the point. Was a privilege to see him more times after he moved to the East Coast, and lastly through his ‘Design Talks’ series. Mentor, leader – thank you for your openness, and for making an impact in my life and career.
submitted by Emilian Dan Cartis
I wish I had met Bill, but it’s more than enough consolation to have come across his contribution to the world, and be changed by his ideas. I took my cue from his idea of multi-disciplinary collaboration, and brought it with me as inspiration the first time I gave a pitch at Startup Weekend. I have Bill to thank for affirming the uniqueness I share with the world.
submitted by Mai
Tonight Dad was honored at the AIGA Centennial Gala. I was honored to be there with my Mum and sing a silly song at his memory. Silly songs: one of Dad’s many hidden talents.
submitted by Alex Moggridge
He was an idealistic fighter, each section of his dramatic life requires a lifetime effort for others to achieve, but he never met, always wanted to do something for the future and this world. We have been invited to talk at the same conference at least for three times. Although what he said was always similar, you can always be inspired by his insights and super nice personality. I still remember he was so proud to say that he made the graphic design of (the interior of) Designing Interactions by himself.
He said the reason he took the job of the museum is to communicate design to the mass, and enable design to enter people’s daily life. I went to the museum to see him in 2012, he was so excited to show me every details of the museum, introduce how they move a TATA car into the old museum. He was so proud to say that he had raised so many funds for the museum. He said my DESIGN Harvests project should been shown in his museum when the renovation is completed. At that time, Jobs was just passed away, in order to see the apple flagship store on Fifth Avenue, I declined the invitation to his apartment for lunch. I did not expect it became our last meeting, as he health condition seems great at that time. Later, I heard he had some problems and had already returned to California, after that came the bad news.
“Design for a meaningful life and a better world”, this is his life. We all know that he is now in paradise.
submitted by LOU Yongqi
I knew about Bill when I was deciding to become an Industrial Designer 35 years ago. There was an exhibition about british design in México City, I saw his work and decided to became an ID. I lost his track during years, the I knew he co-founded IDEO. I established contact with him to invite him to come to Universidad Panamericana campus Bonaterra in México, he came to give 4 conferences. Then we created a postgraduate program called Biointeractive Innovation. Now I have an investigation line about interaction in the virtual world. And you ask me how he changed my life…
submitted by Luis Arturo Méndez Alba