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The Ideal Studio
Jump Studios

Founded in 2001, Jump Studios specialises in high-concept interiors, installations and architectural design. It employs eight staff in its studio which is in a converted factory in east London.

Simon Jordan, founder and managing director of Jump Studios, on...

The role the physical space plays...

“I think creative people, truly creative people, find their own systems and processes, adapting the environment to suit. However, setting the scene through a functional approach to the physical set up is a no-brainer!”

“Spaces aren't passive, they are positive contributors to a studio's performance, they should be full of the tools that help augment the creative process.”

“The first thing is to encourage as much human interaction as possible, particularly in larger organisations, across departments and maybe across locations if it’s a multinational. So we would see that as the provision of very socialised spaces which encourage people to gather, maybe using food as the glue to bring people together.” 

“That naturally encourages people to share ideas and build confidence around those ideas. But you also need spaces that act as a tool to enable people to express themselves easily, spaces with more intimacy and privacy. It’s about finding the right blend between these two.”

“Another element is to allow ideas to be expressed immediately so we would want to see lots of writable surfaces and pin-up spaces to get ideas out very quickly and easily.”

Work place as well as work space...

“It's important to think of creative spaces beyond the constraints of the studio itself; location, neighbourhood, convenience all play a part. The conceptual heart of architecture is traditionally thought of as space but we would see it as experience. If you think about it from that perspective then it goes beyond physical constraints. The work place is as important as the work space. You want people to be free in creative ways – you don’t want them to be inhibited by obstacles like places that are difficult to get to.”

“Everything that goes on around plays into the work place. We love the idea of distractions used in a positive way, taking people out of the day-to-day to get stimulated in a decontextualised environment.”

What most studios lack...

“Time. Creativity is a synthetic process, in the true sense of the word. It's about the happy collision of ideas drawn from varied insights and as such, it's important to find time away from the everyday to absorb, discover new experiences and things that sit outside professional frames of reference.

Playful spaces and the perils of trying too hard...

“Activities like table football or ping pong that don’t replace but reward hard work can be really important. The collision of work and social life we have seen over the past ten or 15 years means you need to approach spaces in a very different way. People spend much more time at work so these spaces should be less institutional, more informal.”

“The problem is sometimes people gravitate to very literal ideas like a room painted with a blue sky to encourage blue sky thinking. Things like that constrain rather than liberate people – they’re a bit of a one-liner. Once you’ve seen it once it’s pretty much over, it doesn’t perpetuate innovation or creativity over time.”

How to visualise a company’s values...

“It’s an issue of scale. In smaller businesses the central figures can communicate the principles and these will attract designers with whom those values and that kind of work resonates. But when it gets bigger the question is how can you externalise those principles. Our role is to understand those intangible brand propositions and translate them into a tangible manifestation.”

“When we designed Red Bull’s headquarters we interpreted the brand into a compressed experience – the promise of being supercharged. We transposed that onto the building and added a slide which allowed people to traverse it very quickly. You are trying to find the narrative motor and interpret what the brand stands for.”

The worst wacky idea companies often suggest...

“The one that really grates is red telephone boxes as a “hilarious” way to provide video conference facilities. It’s been done too much, it’s clichéd and we don’t think it was that interesting in the first place.”


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