Born in Darlington in 1940.
At the age of 14 he left school and started an apprenticeship with a local printer. He then moved on to a career in design eventually starting his own design practice.
He taught at the Central School of Art in London and was visiting lecturer in typography at the Royal College of Art. In 1989 he returned to typography setting up a workshop in Clerkenwell London. He was made fellow of the Royal College of Art in 1998.