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Education and early career
Jones attended Chelsea School of Art and then Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design in London where he studied graphic design, film and photography. He began his career in journalism at i-D magazine in 1983, becoming Editor in 1984 before moving onto Arena in 1987 to serve as Editor. At that same time, he was also a Contributing Editor at The Face, writing cover stories on individuals including Jean Paul Gaultier and Neneh Cherry. Following that, he worked as associate editor of The Observer magazine when it was relaunched with Simon Kelner in 1992, and then moved to The Sunday Times where he held various positions.
In 1999, Jones moved to Condé Nast and took over GQ. He is credited with bringing in a roster of high quality writers including Dominic Lawson, Will Self, A.A. Gill, Ed Victor and Tom Wolfe, as well as taking the magazine in a more political direction. He notably hired Boris Johnson as the magazine's car correspondent. GQ was also the first magazine to feature David Cameron on its cover, soon after he became leader of the Conservative Party.
Since joining GQ, the magazine has won 34 awards. Having won the BSME Men's Editor of the Year Award six times during his tenure at GQ, Jones was also recognised for the Brand Building Initiative of the Year 2007 for the annual GQ Men of the Year Awards. At the BSME Awards 2012 Dylan Jones received the Mark Boxer Award for lifetime achievement honouring him not only for his work on GQ but for his entire career in journalism.
Jones had a weekly column in the magazine supplement of the Mail on Sunday.
In 2010, Jones collaborated with David Bailey on British Heroes in Afghanistan, a celebration of British fighting heroes in Afghanistan, both inside Camp Bastion and outside, with sales benefiting the charity Help for Heroes. Jones is Vice President of Hay Festival, and is also co-chair of the 2011 Norman Mailer Benefit Gala Dinner, being held in New York. He was Chairman of the Prince's Trust's, Fashion Rocks Monaco, in 2007, and in 2012 was appointed the Chair of the 2012 Menswear Committee by the British Fashion Council, helping to organise Britain's very first men's fashion week.
Jones has published biographies of Jim Morrison and Paul Smith and two anthologies of journalism. He is the author of the book, iPod Therefore I Am: A Personal Journey Through Music documenting his musical tastes and how the iPod music player has transformed it. His book Mr Jones' Rules for the Modern Man is an etiquette guide containing advice on how a modern man should behave. It has since been published in 15 countries. Published in August 2008 by Fourth Estate, Cameron on Cameron: Conversations with Dylan Jones was based on a series of interviews with the Tory leader over the course of a year. It was shortlisted for the Channel 4 Political Book of The Year.
In 2012 Jones wrote three further books, When Ziggy Played Guitar: David Bowie and Four Minutes that Shook the World, The Biographical Dictionary of Popular Music and From the Ground Up: U2 360° Tour Official Photobook. Jones' most recent book, The Eighties: One Day, One Decade, published by Preface Publishing and releasing in June 2013, is part autobiographical and part cultural and political history which charts the story of the Eighties through Live Aid in 1985.
Jones wrote of his support for the Conservative Party in an article in 2008, a political choice he claims caused his friends to treat him "like a man who had just admitted he not only enjoyed the music of Phil Collins, but also kept bound volumes of illegal pornography in his attic."
- Jim Morrison: Dark Star by Dylan Jones, published by Bloomsbury, September 1990.
- Paul Smith True Brit by Dylan Jones, published 1995.
- Meaty, Beaty, Big & Bouncy and Sex, Power and Travel both anthologies published 1996.
- iPod, Therefore I Am by Dylan Jones, published by Weidenfeld & Nicholson, June 2005.
- Mr Jones' Rules for the Modern Man by Dylan Jones, published by Hodder & Stoughton, October 2006.
- Cameron on Cameron: Conversations with Dylan Jones by Dylan Jones, published by Fourth Estate, August 2008.
- Heroes by David Bailey and Dylan Jones, published by Thames & Hudson, October 2010.*
- When Ziggy Played Guitar: David Bowie and Four Minutes that Shook the World, published by Preface Publishing, 2012.
- The Biographical Dictionary of Popular Music, published by Bedford Square Books, 2012
- From the Ground Up: U2 360° Tour Official Photobook, published by Preface Publishing, 2012.
- The Eighties: One Day, One Decade, published by Preface Publishing, June 2013