Jony Ive wasn’t always Jony Ive, Apple design God.
At one point, he was just a young British designer trying to get by.
However, Ive was a precocious design talent, and from a young age, he was racking up awards for his design work.
Leander Kahney’s, JONY IVE, The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products, which is now out in paperback sheds new light on some of Ive’s earliest works. We got permission from the book’s publisher to run photos of some of that work.
While Apple products today have a certain look and feel to them, Ive’s early work doesn’t really have a signature to it.
This was intentional.
Kahney highlighted this quote from Paul Kunkel in a book about Apple design: “Unlike most of his generation, Ive did not see design as an occasion to exert his ego or carry out some pres ordained style or theory. Rather, he approached each project in an almost chameleon-like way, adapting himself to the product (rather than the other way around) … for this reason, Ive’s early works have no ‘signature style.'”
That said, the works turned heads. They were so good that Apple’s design leader Bob Brunner spent years recruiting Ive. Eventually he landed Ive, and the rest is history.
Here’s a look at the early work, and the evolution of Ive’s style.