Open Studio Club
Launched in 2011 by Nick Couch, formerly creative and managing director at Figtree, Open Studio Club is a free listings website for artists and designers to find affordable studios to rent.
Described as the ‘airbnb of creative studios’, the site lists more than 500 studios all over the world. It also features sections such as ‘work cafés’, a directory of cafés that welcome freelancers (and make good coffee…).
A recent redesign of the site has also seen the introduction of these rather smart new icons, which highlight the facilities offered by the studios.
And for its next initiative, Open Studio Club is launching the ‘free desk’ project, asking top creative consultancies to offer some free space to new talent.
Couch says, ‘There’s lots of free space out there in agencies that’s going to waste.
‘From the consultancy’s perspective, having empty space can be bad for morale, and you’ve also got a situation where you’ve got people leaving college and finding it really hard to get a desk or a lease.’
He adds, ‘This is good for people taking the desk as they get it for free, and good for the consultancy as they get to have another bright creative mind in the mix.’
Consultancies with free desk space will be able to offer it through the Open Studio website, and will be able to choose who to give the space to, and for how long.
And as an added incentive, the first 50 consultancies to offer desk space will receive a limited-edition Anthony Burrill print ‘Free Desk Here’, which has been developed for the initiative (‘it was the first time he’d printed on to fluorescent paper’, says Couch, ‘so he was very excited.’).
The Free Desk initiative will be launching in early March, with a number of top international consultancies already signed up.