Open Studio Club, another great collaborative consumer brand.

Open Studio - Collaborative Consumer Brand

Ever fancied a work place exchange, or a working holiday with all the comforts and conveniences of your studio at home? Or maybe you were wondering when the next airbnb/couch surfing, peer-to-peer consumer brand would focus on studio space rentals… If you have, the “Open Studio Club” is the brand for you. It consists of a free listing website to help you find affordable studio spaces all over the world. Each studio listing specifies whether the space has such things as: internet access, power supply, parking availability, music policy and computer support. The spaces advertised are always affordable and suitable for all types of creative professionals.

Another branch of Open Studio Club brand is the “Free Desk” iniative, in aid of collaboration between studios and independent creatives. Studios who have a spare desk permanently or temporarily (perhaps when someone is on annual leave) can advertise to host a creative professional while they work on their own independent project. The idea is that the arrangement will enable collaboration and the exchange of ideas between the guest and the studio. (It is not a work placement.) This exchange can easily become a cultural one since desks are advertised worldwide, for example a film maker/designer recently travelled from London to take up a free desk in Hort’s studio Berlin and a typographer from Rotterdam moved to take a free desk in a studio in Brooklyn. This type of collaboration or exchange has considerable value for both the individual and studio. To read more about collaborative consumer brands, click here to read a blog by Peter Singline .

The process of listing a free desk has quickly turned into a creative endeavour in itself. Each studio has photographed the advertised desk in a unique and unexpected way. And the first 50 studios to list a free desk, receive a signed Anthony Burrill Screen print (They are going quickly, currently there are 9 left).  You can see the poster featured in the first photo listed below.

Collaborative Consumer Brand - Open Studio Screen-shot-2013-04-03-at-4.24 photo_9

Collaborative Consumer Brand - Open Studio

The Open Studio Club website also lists and maps a number of cafes that are suitable to work from, again specifying such things as power supply, internet access and time sensitivity. This is not only a great resource for local freelancers but also tourists looking for good “work” cafes in an unfamiliar city. The Open Studio Club, does not oversee the cafes listed on the site, they rely on their visitors to upload suitable businesses. And so far only one cafe has been listed for the Melbourne area. However I’m sure the initiative will spread with more time.

The strength of this brand lies in the online collaboration and sharing that makes living and working options more relevant, convenient and desirable. This kind of collaboration will  continue to spread, and we can expect many other brands like Open Studio Club. Rethinking the traditional consumer brand model leads us into exciting territory, and it is really worth investigating from a brand’s perspective. If your brand needs rethinking, or you’d like to see what else is possible, give us a call.

Julia Dowe
Design Creative

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