Article by Tristian Goik.
Why do people get together? Is it to find solace? Is it to talk about the return of “Community?” Or is it so they can bum a cigarette? We may never know the answer to these important questions, but I thought about it while attending the opening cocktail reception of The Productive.
The idea behind this exposed brick and hardwood floor loft would be that certain people need a space to work; one that they cannot find in their less than perfect homes or offices. It is hard to animate when you have a roommate with noisy lovers or an overly concerned mother invading your ‘space.’ It is also hard to animate if your job’s computer has evil monitoring software or renders out peculiar codecs that choke up on other people’s laptops. But you might find it easier to animate at a nice row of desks, working together on art in separate ways.
The Productive offers a range of membership plans, ranging from short to long-term commitments, from $130-$270. You will need references. If you do secure a computer, you will find the standard helpful array of graphic software, along with a scanner, conference room, printer, and tea. At the opening last Thursday, I sipped a Cucumber Collins and chatted with The Singing CPA, who reminded me that any membership would obviously be an expense you can write off.
Milling around The Productive, which was nicely decorated with Christmas lights, a jazz band, and giant glass tubes of veggie-fruit-alcohol, I tried to imagine myself working there. With alcohol supported drishti, I cloned out the crowd of my friends and cute new acquaintances and added in a row of studious animators. The biggest change I could see it would have on my work would be that it would expose me to outside criticism, which is always a plus even if it irritates the hell out of me. There isn’t much for me to say about The Productive because the intrinsic value of the space should be fairly obvious, and it only begs you to examine your own life to see if your art could benefit from a change in space.
Susan Godfrey is the godmother of The Productive, and many people at the party seemed genuinely proud of her accomplishments. Her opening reception brought together not just animators, but illustrators, photographers, voice actors and programmers. Imagine what they could accomplish sharing the same table.
Editor’s note: An in-depth interview with Susan Godfrey will appear on the Freelance Corner next week.