Design and illustration studio, Always With Honor, aims at creating brand identities with warmth and wonderment. Based in Portland, Oregon, it is run by designer duo Elsa and Tyler Lang. And with over a decade of experience, it’s clear they aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.
While Tyler was born in Vermont, Elsa is originally from Colombia, where she spent her childhood exploring her abuelo’s mango farm and sneaking off to play soccer with her cousins. According to her, the visual influences of her tropical upbringing are now reflected in her use of color and pattern, as well as her love of folk art and spicy foods.
“Art and design have always been a part of that culture,” she told The Great Discontent, talking about her cultural identity and creative background. “Pre Columbian art is everywhere, though no one really sees it as art,” she adds. “It’s almost as if it’s just a part of the fabric of the country. I grew up exposed to it every day, but didn’t necessarily think it was special; it was just there, in the background. But as I get older, I can see that it was likely an influence.”
For Tyler, creativity is tied to his upbringing, as well as his explorations of the nature and wildlife of Vermont as a child. “I’ve been into art as long as I can remember,” he relayed. “I’m not sure if that’s related to growing up in Vermont, though, I do think my family had an influence. My dad’s side of the family is artistic—his aunt would create different handmade Christmas ornaments every year, and give one to us. One year, she bought an old, broken piano and tore it apart to make little creatures out of the piano keys. They were the coolest things.”
Together, they’re a force to be reckoned with.