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OUGD502 - Life's A Pitch - Studio space visit

Today we went to Duke Studios in Leeds to have a look around the area to figure out if it was suitable for what we'd want as a studio.

I prepared some questions before heading down:

How many freelancers / studios work here?

What facilities are available and how much use can you get out of them? Does it work as a booking service?

What studios work here already?

What times and days are you guys open?

Clint and Rosanna greeted us and took us on a tour around the workspace and facilities and were really friendly and helpful. They showed us the 'Motherfrickinlaser' cutter and tech room where anything physical is made and then the photography studio. Then went to explain the three different levels of residents that coexist there, studios, desks and then spaces. Studios have their own walled off area where they work, desks are individuals and freelancers who rent out a desk space in the studio to work and then the spaces are generally just access to the communal areas to work in a creative environment.

There is a huge mix of creative workers in the studio space: landscape architects, web designers, graphic designers, illustrators, video fx, fashion designers and more. They are very very accommodating to the residents and encourage collaborations within the space between the creatives.

On top of the other facilities, they have a meeting room called the 'Not Bored Room' (punny) and 'The Snug'. The 'Not Bored Room' is used for meetings and pitches for clients and can be rented out by the residents and the 'Snug Room' is used for private phone calls and Skype meetings with clients and other creatives.

After we were shown that they took us to the office and introduced us to the people in charge James and Laura, who told us some more interesting facts about the studios and then asked us if we had any questions so I listed off the ones I had which hand't been answered and they answered with a lot of enthusiasm.

There are roughly 85 residents in the studio split over 45 different creative businesses. And the opening times are different for each resident level. Studios have 24/7 access and their own keycards, desks are allowed in every single day until 11pm and spaces are allowed in 9-5.

Overall it was a really good and interesting visit and left me feeling rather inspired just being in there for 45 minutes. In my opinion, definitely the best place for our studio.

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