In my experience, doing what you love certainly has a direct correlation with success, and the story of the two brothers that made good, designing their own way was no different. I was lucky enough to sit down with the guys from Van Orton Design to talk about their entrepreneurial journey and their work with amazing clients. If they were to pinpoint their secret ingredient they would say it was simply paying tribute to the music and cinema that they loved and promoting on Instagram. Enjoy the interview.
Give me a little background, did you guys have a mother of father that was an entrepreneur? Did you guys study graphic design?
"We do not come from a family of entrepreneurs, indeed, we come from a very humble family, our mother took care of the home and has taken care of us while our father was the worker. We've always had the passion for design and graphics, but we did not do any study after high school, we just started working at age 19 in some communication and advertising agency."
What did you do for work before you jumped into business together?
"We have always worked in the world of graphics, communication agencies and events. After 12 years working in an agency we decided to dedicate ourselves to what we had created with the Van Orton project. Van Orton is a project born entirely casually, simply bringing to life what we had inside, paying tribute to all our passions between music and cinema."
How did the relationship from being brothers to business partners evolve? What stopped you from killing each other?:)
"Fortunately we are very much in agreement and we have always come to much agreement. I think this was our strength even on choosing to leave the old job at the agency and get in with Van Orton."
Your design style is very unique...who are your inspirations? and how did the style develop itself?
"Initially our style could be somehow inspired to the stained glass windows of the churches, which in the early works we could remember. Afterwards, the style has changed, with a very POP mark but mixed with neon and psychedelic effects in the 70s and 80s. We were definitely influenced by the world of pop art, but we like to contaminate our work with cinematic and musical cult elements of our 80s."
What has been your strategy in terms of marketing and growing a business doing what you love?
"We have always done everything in a very natural and passionate way. Our real strategy is not a strategy at all. We have always acted very instinctively and in a very artistic and creative manner on what we had in mind. This fortunately worked a lot and helped us grow and make the right decisions."
Can you talk about some of the failures that you have overcome?
"There have been, for example, some works that have been skipped or failed for some clients choices or change of direction. This has certainly helped us and reaffirmed our artistic direction and ultimately created our style, like all the mistakes or failures in life - only good can ultimately come of it."
What have been the keys to your success? When did you know you were onto something?
"I could not say the key to success, also because it was not sought but just driven by passion. Perhaps we realized we had created a style when people asked us to be "Vanortonized" :)".
What is your advice to artists stuck in a job they do not like? How do they make the move to doing what they love?
"It would be easy to say to try to follow the passion but it does not always work and can not always turn into work. I believe that in our case have a co-founder in my brother has helped us a lot. We also helped in choosing to resign from the old office - and leaving the creative agency".
Sometimes artists seem to be fearful of self-promotion - what is your advice?
"I think that for an artist or designer today there are no more curriculum presentations, but modern curricula is social. In our case, instagram was fundamental, and very big jobs with major brands came directly from instagram. Instagram or other social are very useful means to use intelligently".
Whats next for Van Orton Design?
"We are designing the flux capacitor to time traveling :)".