Rick Poynor is a writer on design, graphic design, typography, and visual culture. He began as a general visual arts journalist, working on Blueprint magazine in London. After founding Eye magazine, which he edited from 1990 to 1997, he focused increasingly on visual communication. He is writer-at-large and columnist of Eye, and a contributing editor and columnist of Print magazine.
In 1999, Poynor was a co-ordinator of the First Things First 2000 manifesto initiated by Adbusters. In 2003, he co-founded Design Observer, a weblog for design writing and discussion, with William Drenttel, Jessica Helfand, and Michael Bierut. He wrote for the site until 2005. He was a visiting professor at the Royal College of Art, London from 1994 to 1999 and returned to the RCA in 2006 as a research fellow. He also taught at the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht. In 2004, Poynor curated the exhibition, Communicate: Independent British Graphic Design since the Sixties, at the Barbican Art Gallery in London. The exhibition subsequently travelled to four venues in China and to Zurich.