Owen McLoughlin of Jando Design is a poster boy for millennials

Owen Mc Loughlin, one half of Jando Design, speaks to Aileen Lee

Owen Mc Loughlin, one half of Jando Design, at work on one of their prints.

What’s your background?

I studied computer applications in college. After graduating I worked as a programmer and then as a business analyst in finance. I’d always had an interest in illustration, design and architecture, but thought of it as a hobby rather than a skill or talent.

It wasn’t until we started planning our wedding in New York that the idea for Jando was born. We wanted to create a suite of stationery that reflected our personalities, but we couldn’t find what we were looking for. That led us to creating bespoke stationery
that included everything from hardback wedding invitations to luggage tags and button pins. We enjoyed working together so much we set up an ETSY shop and starting shipping stationery to customers all over the world.

A few months later, Julie happened to find a series of screen prints that I had been working on. She instantly fell in love with them and decided to approach several retailers who wanted to stock the collection straight away. We haven’t looked back since. In January of this year, I left my job in finance to concentrate on Jando.

What’s a typical work day like for you?

My morning usually starts at 6am. I respond to emails and get working on online orders that come through during the night. I’ll always try to have any meetings before lunchtime, so I can spend the rest of the afternoon working on new sketches and illustrations.

Tell us about a recent project or design/ favourite project or design you have worked on?

Earlier this year we were commissioned by Jameson Irish Whiskey to create two bespoke prints depicting their iconic Bow Street Distillery. Jameson are such an iconic brand and were an absolute joy to work with. We are incredibly proud of our work on that project.

What’s your design style?

We don’t really believe in sticking to any one style or aesthetic. We enjoy experimenting with various mediums and techniques and it’s through this curiosity that we’ve come to realise that each series or piece will find its own style without us having to force it.

What/Who inspires your work?

We’re both huge fans of music and film and these influences feature prominently in our work, from the bold punchy colours we use to the cinematic compositions of our pieces.

What’s your favourite trend at the moment (if you have any)?

We don’t follow trends – looking at what’s in trend means you’re already rooted in the past. Our work combines both traditional and modern printmaking techniques which enables us to always remain in the now.

What’s your most treasured possession?

The one thing that means the most to me is our collection of photographs. The tangibility of a printed photograph offers you a sense of connection to a moment that a digital photo can never give you simply because you can touch it.

Who would be your favourite designer, or style inspiration?

I love the work of Anton Corbijn, Russell Mills and Jay Ryan. I’m also a huge fan of the videos of Romain Gavras and Michel Gondry.

What would be a dream project for you to work on?

I’ve always been a huge fan of Depeche Mode and of the visual aesthetic that Anton Corbjin has crafted for the band. I’d love to create album artwork / visuals for the band or any band that I felt a connection with musically. Producing cover art for some of the classic and contemporary films in the Criterion Collection would also be out of this world.

Have you any design tips for us?

We’ve just bought our first home and have been so busy that we haven’t had the time to put our stamp on the place. We’ve lived here for a year and have let the space annoy us for 12 months, so we know what works and what doesn’t.

In February we’re renovating the entire apartment, so we’ve spent the last few months choosing colour palettes, furnishings and what kind of kitchen we want. At this point the only bit of advice I could give you is that when decorating your home, you need to do your research, form a plan and not rush into things.


Instagram: @jandodesign

Twitter: @JandoDesign

Facebook: jandodesign.ireland

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