Erin Jang

Meet NYC's designer Erin Jang, lover of color, playful patterns, and bringing art and heart together!
Describe what you do: I am a graphic designer and illustrator. I love making things and working on a wide range of creative projects. The name of my studio is The Indigo Bunting.
Where do you live? Where do you work? I live and work in New York City. My husband and I are both from Seattle; sometimes we look at each other in disbelief that we have been living in Manhattan for over 15 years and are now raising our two young boys here!

Describe a typical day for you: I wake up around 6:30am. My husband and I help to get our boys ready and to their school bus stop, and then I work until early afternoon. Depending on the projects I’m working on, I might be doing a lot of design work on the computer, and other days I might have more analog work, where I am crafting and making things with my hands. My favorite part of the day is when my boys get home. I love whatever nuggets from the day they’ll share with me. After dinner, we’re all in the living room together — there is a record playing, messy art being made, homework being finished and a work email being sent, Wordle and Spelling Bee on my phone to play together, and reading and talking on the sofa until the kids go to bed. My husband and I tackle chores and some more work and then relax together.
Name a book that you read recently and loved: I know I’m a grown-up, but children’s books are the most inspiring. I have so much appreciation for the storytelling that happens in picture books, through the economy of words and the clever, beautiful imagery. I just read this book — I am the Subway by Kim Hyo-eun — to my children and was moved by the story, which looks into different passengers’ lives as told by a subway train in Korea. I loved it because I take the NYC subway all the time and always wonder what stories are behind the faces sitting across from me, riding the train. Two other books that I reread recently are Things to Look Forward To by Sophie Blackall and The Power of Moments by Chip and Dan Heath. Both books touch on the theme of noticing and creating meaningful moments of joy, for others and for oneself.
Favorite snack: Iced coffee!
Favorite color combination: Brown with a neon orangey-red
What is your most treasured possession? I don’t get too sentimental and attached to objects. But what I cherish the most are all the collection of special cards and notes our family has made and written for each other. I have a box full of letters and cards that my husband has given to me over the many years we’ve known each other (he writes such beautiful notes and knows this is the only thing I
want on any given special occasion). Also in that box are handmade books and notes my boys have made for each other, little notes for and from the kids, and my favorite drawings the children made for us.

What is the best piece of advice someone ever gave you? It isn’t really advice, but I have always loved these words: “Do small things with great love.” It sums up the way I would like to approach life, work, family, and just about everything.

What is the inspiration behind this design? I love playing with simple forms and colors. I was inspired to create a design that would feature the first shapes that a child learns to identify as they play and grow: A heart, a star, a flower, a leaf, the shape of their favorite building blocks and the reflection of their own smiling face.

What got you most excited about working with the Steve Nash Foundation? The foundation does such critical work for underserved children and families in NYC. Their commitment to helping kids with their education, health, and personal growth is so meaningful to see, and I’m happy to be able to support their work in some small way.
What are some of the biggest ways we can support our kids as they learn to grow and navigate our complex world?
We can let children know that they are loved and that they matter so much. And find those moments to connect with our kids, even if it is for just a short time at the end of a hectic day, to be able to give our full attention and express our joy at just being with them as they are. Other things that I think can help kids learn, grow and navigate the world: creating and protecting time for kids spent unplugged, reading good books together to deepen their empathy and understanding of the world, and finding opportunities for kids to volunteer. Helping in one’s community is a meaningful way for children to learn firsthand how hope can be cultivated through many hands working together, loving and caring for each other in this difficult world.
And finally, where can we see your work?
Stationery collection
And my books for children:
You, Me, We! (A creative fill-in book for children and parents to do together)
How Are You Feeling?
Little Learner
Shop The Play & Grow Blanket