John Hurst, the Recorder’s former art director, known for his graphic design skills and love of art, died on May 16. He was 67 years old.
Hurst worked at the Recorder from 1986 until his retirement in 2019. He also held the titles of Senior Graphic Designer and Photo Editor.
When Hurst began his career, the newspaper still used a darkroom. His daughter Charity Hurst Lewis remembers walking into the darkroom as a child, and Hurst would prop her up on the counter so she could watch him develop photos.
Lewis and her two sisters were Recorder babies, she said. They slept on the floor, dined at the office – all to watch their father work.
Hurst also had his own business, Graphics to Go, which he used for his illustration and design work. Hurst has uniquely designed or helped design logos for organizations such as Indiana Black Expo, Joyful Sound Productions, Steward Speakers, and The Write Lady, among others.
Hurst graduated from the Herron School of Art and Design at IUPUI and earned an MFA from Ball State University.
His children remember many late nights, whether for Recorder’s work or his own, but it didn’t come at their expense.
“Saturday morning he let us shoot his face so we could wake him up, and he was going to play basketball with us for hours,” his daughter Jocelyn Hurst said.
Along with her three daughters, Hurst had four grandchildren. He coached basketball, he used his artistic skills to help with school projects, he collected Marvel comics, and he loved music — from James Brown to Tupac.
“He was a very loving father and grandfather,” said Jacqueline Hurst, his wife of 43 years. “His children and grandchildren loved him dearly and he will be missed by them all.”
Hurst was also a deacon at It Is Well Ministries, where he played drums.
Hurst was known at the Recorder for his extensive knowledge of Indianapolis. It has often served as a resource for journalists.
“I will miss John so much,” former Recorder President Shannon Williams said. “He was a colleague, but also a teacher for me. I learned a lot about design and photography thanks to him. I will also miss his deep historical knowledge of Indianapolis and specifically the black community. It was a treasure. »
There will be a public viewing from 10 a.m. to noon on May 25 at Kingdom Builders Community Church, 5502 E. 36th St., followed by a private family service.
Contact editor Tyler Fenwick at 317-762-7853 or by email at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick.
Remembering John Hurst
“I loved listening to John tell stories about growing up in Indianapolis or talking about the history of black neighborhoods here. He always painted such vivid pictures and made life so fun back then. He was truly a wealth of information about this city. -Oseye Boyd recorder editor
“There was never a dull moment. He was creative, smart, funny and loved his music. John had us listen to everything from Jean-Luc Ponty to Snoop Dogg. And to listen to his stories, John was crazy. I’m so glad I got to learn newspaper design working with him. He was the best and will be missed. -Recorder Production Manager Jeana Ouattara
“I’ve known John since 1973, when I started deejaying. He was always available to me whenever I needed him. All the business cards I’ve had except one, designed by John Hurst. He also designed every flyer and ticket I’ve ever used. He was a great friend.” -Thomas “Sparkle Soxx” Griffon
“When I first met John, I could tell he would be a great friend. And because he was also a photographer, our conversations were really great and full of sharing experiences. I will miss his conversations the more. John was a very sincere man. He was sincere about everything. He said what he meant and you could believe him. – Recorder Photographer Curtis Guynn
“John and I have worked together for decades. We both loved the recorder. Our work sometimes had us there all night. While working, we liked to listen to music and talk about events. We have seen our families grow. He was part of my family and will always be in our hearts.” – Former Recorder Production Manager Jeffery Sellers