Creative Collaboration with Andrew Edinburgh of The Studio
Today we are spotlighting The Studio, a London-based coworking space filled with inspiration and innovation. It’s diverse membership community is made up of a variety of professionals with the same values: the belief that a better world can be created by focusing on compassion, creativity, and commitment.
We spoke with Andrew Edinburgh, the Space Coordinator and Event Organiser, who gave us a glimpse into the day-to-day happenings of The Studio.
Tell us about what you do with The Studio.
I’m Andrew Edinburgh. I’m the space coordinator and event organiser, including marketing the space, looking after meetings and events when they come in, and directing the art in the space. I also wash the dishes.
How did The Studio come to be?
I was organising art events with a friend, from home, when she found a coworking space that member hosts. I was like, 'What's wrong with the kitchen table?', but tried it. I've never looked back. I worked with Eric, who later opened The Studio here and we got along well. I did a lot of volunteering in return for being able to take over the space for some art events and installations.
When Eric was opening The Studio he asked me if I wanted to get involved. Here I am. I started out helping and putting up art, now I work here and love it. That's more my story but that's how it developed for me.
What is your favourite aspect of the space?
Community. I'm not surprised that they say we're more productive around other people, we are social creatures after all. We need interaction with other humans. And the look of the place. The mezzanine looks and feels a bit like a boat, especially with the sky lights. I work well here.
What is the community like in The Studio?
Pretty relaxed, and in my experience, supportive. I'm always doing something with the art here, wondering if something is appropriate, but everyone is so positive, they're just, 'Yeah, do it!'. It's also fun here. Eric and some of the members have bought electric scooters, they're becoming quite popular, and we're talking about having a Grand Prix in the local park when the weather gets better. Looking forward to that.
What sort of events or programs do you host?
We tend to lean towards the creative, like a writing group that comes in, but not exclusively. The Studio also sponsors a charity, The Kids Network, who organise mentorship for underprivileged and at risk children. We have digital marketing and creative content workshops, and, of course, art. I even tried on a mood sweater at a future fashion event we had here, turns out I was either in love or stressed.
Tell us about Digits2Widgets and how they set the tone for the space.
I'd heard about 3D printing and had even seen something that had been printed, but that didn't prepare me for Digets2Wigets. When the Gallery isn't being used for an event there is a permanent, but changing, display on show. All I can say is that it seems it only stops where your imagination does. If you can think it, they can print it. In short, the whole place is cutting edge.
Any favourite go-to spots for happy hour or lunch in Camden?
One place the members frequent is the Camden Tandoori. Good food, and you can get lunch for £2.50. There are not many things you can get in London nower days for £2.50. Rullo's is a pizza place under the bridge on Camden road, really nice Italian food and we get a discount. And you can't forget Camden Market, where you can get pretty much anything you want as well as something new. There are a couple of wholefood places on Kentish Town road, Natural and Earth.
And one of the great things about London is you're never far from a park, so a lot of people will grab something from a supermarket and head to a bit of green space when it's sunny, muttering something about enjoying the summer while it lasts. As for happy hour, here we have skive@5 . It's quite popular, usually on a Thursday when we put out a few beers and some wine, and stop working.
You recently wrote about Camden street art. Can you tell us more about the creative neighbourhood?
Where to start, and stop? Camden has always been a magnet for creative people. I even recently saw a job ad for a biscuit decorator. If I wasn't busy here I'd definitely have a go at that.
There is also Theatro Technis, a fringe theatre, just down the road., one of at least two that I know of, they put on new plays as well as classics. I've seen some mind blowing stuff and some not so mind blowing things, you take your chance with fringe theatre, but it's always good to go. I wouldn't say it's amateur; the level of performance is very professional, maybe grass roots is the term.
And music, of course. There are lots of live music venues and dance clubs. A lot of the well know live gig venue are around here. The Roundhouse, just to mention one, being one of the most famous.
What do you think the future of coworking will look like?
I wouldn't be surprised to see new trends coming out of coworking, what they'll be is anybody’s guess. You can already see a sort of cross-pollination taking place as different disciplines come into contact. For example, we have a fashion consultant and a 3D printing entrepreneur sitting at the same desk. They get on well and while chatting discovered that 3D printing could be very helpful with her jewelry development.
That sort of thing is happening all the time in coworking spaces. In what other environment can you collaborate with with someone from a different discipline, model some garments for someone and be part of an art display, all in the same day? Who knows where that will lead but I'm looking forward to finding out.