How to Start an Animation Studio

 In Blog

So for the last few years we’ve built a business from a double garage.

Then last summer I started thinking about moving the business from the garage to a studio with more space. Flash forward to 2015 and we’ve made the move to a new studio. We’re now a team of 7 people as a business. We’re in the new space and the studio is, well we love it…

But this story isn’t about where we are now or even where we’re going. I wanted to share my observations on how we’ve evolved as a team as a result of working in that hot/chilly garage space over the last few years.

Ok. I’m going to do the ‘3 things’ to keep this simple…

1. The first thing I learnt is just how important it’s been to have the opportunity to develop a strong sense of respect and friendship with colleagues as a result of a close-knit garage environment.

Let’s call it the ‘garage effect’ for now. Put simply the right team can create beautiful things when they work in close proximity and have an environment that nurtures the growth of creativity.

In some large part we have the garage effect to thank for that (oh and the bootstrap friendly landlords too…) Our small garage space allowed us to challenge one another quickly, with immediacy, face to face. Nothing beats face to face, nothing comes even close.

As a startup if you provide the opportunity to work closely together in the confines of a small space early on you’ll give yourself every chance of retaining strong internal communication as you grow.

2. The second thing I learnt is that collaboration grows naturally in a small space and creates high quality values in team working.

High quality values are placed where they should be, high up almost out of reach, available only when you really stretch for them.

Collaborative working is core to our everyday now and quality is absolutely paramount.

3. The third thing I learnt is all about flowA well know phenomenon in the creative services industry. This refers to the intangible state that occurs and resonates for teams at certain periods of the day. A time when productivity peaks without the need for a call, meeting, app or any other devices unless required. Around about 10-12am and 2-4pm or thereabouts.

We try not to disturb the flow where possible, after all what can possibly be more important than creativity in all it’s diverse forms?

And all this from a small garage that offered us a cohesive space as a team to think, execute and deliver on high quality work.

Building a business, creating a team and discovering a brand is both exhilarating and lonely all in one hit. Having a heady mix of experience, strong creative talent and a sharp toolset allows for all sorts of possibilities. And it’s the possibilities we love.

Present day. With the luxury of a little more space I do think that we can create environments that provide cohesive collisions for cross pollination of ideas and greater business opportunity. This is what we’re doing and I’m going to write more on this in the next post!

So I guess in summary create a close knit environment that builds collaboration and listen out for the flow, you’ll hear it when everything’s still.

My advice, start a business in a garage, it’s not just for bikes.

Nick Pep – The Like Minded

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