“Don’t you just love this magazine?
I know I do.”
-Katie Cantrell, editor
BY KATIE CANTRELL
As the editor, I might have the privilege of shepherding the words along, but make no mistake: the fine folks of Highline Design are the reason Go Local persists from one eye-catching and thought-provoking issue to the next. They’re also the last people to toot their own horns, so I’m going to do it for them.
I would call George, Elma and Jill cool—I mean come on, just look at them—but “cool” suggests an element of detachment, of being above it all, and this team is anything but that. Their passion is exactly what makes Highline so awesome: they aren’t going to settle in their logo and branding work [George: “If we did the boring, safe thing, people wouldn’t want to work with us, because they can get that on the Internet for $20. Being safe and boring doesn’t pay off, not for the business, not for us.”], and they aren’t going to sit around and let the Flathead Valley be anything less than a vibrant, creative place. [Elma: “Building the creative community is crucial. We’re all a part of that, and it’s the next big step.”] This weird and wonderful art issue most certainly wouldn’t have come to pass without these three. Art and the people who create it are the fuel that keep their fires burning. When I interviewed Tessa Heck, she said that she cold-called Highline when she was considering moving back to the valley; she’d seen their stuff on social media and thought there might be an opportunity to work with or for them. “We couldn’t even afford ourselves then,” George told me, remembering the call, “but we said you should come look us up, we should know each other.” Turns out this happens fairly regularly. Making those connections—and introducing members of the valley’s creative community to each other—are the reason they put on events like PechaKuchas (strange name, great event, give it a Google) and are part of the newly incorporated Arts and Culture Council of Kalispell. I could try to describe their aspirations, but George said it best: “Our studio is this little flashpoint for artists and creatives. We can invite them to something, they realize there are others like them, and they stay [in the valley] and make art. I want people to stay and do stuff, to know that we’re here, we’ll support them if they do stuff.”
On behalf of all of us who can’t ignore that creative itch, thank you, Highline. You’re the best.
– Katie (Go Local Editor)
[From left] Jill Johns, Elma Giavasis, George Giavasis, and Olive (dog boss).
Photo by: Mandy Mohler of Field Guide Designs (she may as well be Go Local staff at this point, too)
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