Keith Bright: Local Design Legend Lost

AIGA Los Angeles sadly mourns the loss of one of our mentors, friends, and design hero—Keith Bright of Bright Design.

Designer and AIGA Los Angeles Senior Advisor Toni-Hollander Morse shares the following:

He was one of the lions of what many consider a golden age of design and promotion. Many mourn his loss in a personal as well as a professional way, I certainly do.

Keith was a hero of mine. He was more of a mentor to and influence on me than he even realized. He gave his help so effortlessly and naturally that I doubt he even realized how much he was giving.

Keith was one of the proverbial larger than life characters and talents of which legends are made. But, he was not just a legend. He was an actual brilliant, courageous talent who innately understood both design and marketing. He leaves a hole impossible to fill except that he leaves an extraordinary legacy. He was one of the giants on whose shoulders we were able to stand. My generation and every younger generation that followed stand on his shoulders and on other lions’ shoulders who established what we now call a profession. 

I know my feelings echo others and I hope to share additional ones from some of the others over weeks to come, as well.

Wherever Keith is now, I know there is a party going on…


“When you see a good design, you feel it in your gut.”

This idea is one of the most important gifts Keith has given the design community.

Keith leaves behind a loving family and a host of friends and colleagues, grateful for the 85 years he gave this world and the legacy he has left us all. He was an innovator, a category creator, a disruptor, and most importantly, a creative thinker. Keith’s work appeared on buildings, ships, vehicles just as often as matchstick books and dog food bags—anything and everything you could imagine. His ardent passion was to elevate anything we touched, arguing that the consumer, the world, always needed better.

Our hearts go out to Keith’s family, Tuire Kontiainen, Christian Klawitter & the team at Bright Design. They are in our thoughts at this painful time, and we send them our condolences.

Sadly and respectfully,
AIGA Los Angeles

By AIGA Los Angeles
Published April 20, 2018
AIGA encourages thoughtful, responsible discourse. Please add comments judiciously, and refrain from maligning any individual, institution or body of work. Read our policy on commenting.