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We chat to Leeds Design Studio Lord Whitney

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Lord Whitney, a multi platform creative studio from Leeds answer a few of our questions in running with their latest project ‘The Treehouse Studio’. Read more below and find out how you can personally get involved!

Hi guys, would you like to introduce us to who you guys are and the general jist of what it is you do? I know that if i asked about all the things you do we’d be here for days, maybe months!

Hey, we’re Lord Whitney, also known as Amy Lord and Rebekah Whitney, connoisseurs of make believe and lovers of Yorkshire Tea.

Lord Whitney is a studio specialising in art direction, set design and prop making. We’ve been known to turn our hand to anything from editorials and fashion shoots to music videos and festivals. like you said we can go on for days, so we’ll leave it there!

It looks like Lord Whitney has really found its place, and things are coming together. Would you agree with that, and if so has it been a difficult journey to get to where you are?

We consider the last few years to be the biggest adventure of our lives, it’s taken us to some weird and wonderful places, and we’ve had some great experiences and met some wonderful people. Running our own business is probably one of the hardest things we’ve ever tackled, and we still feel like we learn so much every year. Our business motto has always been ‘Work Hard and Be Nice To People’ and it’s worked for us so far. 

Its been a challenge getting here but we are now in a place where Lord Whitney is an established studio with an awesome team and some great clients, so all’s good.

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From the beginning it has always been the two of you, hence the name. Do I see a third member of Lord Whitney now in the form of super musician Lins Wilson?

YES! One of the best things recently was adding a new member to our team in the shape of one powerful lady called Lins Wilson. Not only a super talented creative and musician, but one highly organised and efficient producer who keeps Lord Whitney running smoothly and has helped shape our most recent projects. 

We’re super excited to hear about your new project which is called ‘The Treehouse Studio’. For all of those who are not yet in the know, please share with us exactly what you plan to do!

Yes so, we have a brilliant studio space in Leeds just outside the city centre, it’s an old leather mill and its huge!

A goal of ours over the last few years has been to develop the studio into a space that’s not only for us to create work in, but to also be a place where we can help other emerging creatives by offering them a platform to set up in Leeds.

The Treehouse is a big part of this master plan and will be a small self contained space within our studio. It will allow us to offer residencies and create an exciting event space. We are working with some super talented carpenters, designers and architects on the project so expect something pretty special!

Alongside the Treehouse studio we are re-developing the space to create a more multi-functional studio environment, suitable to hold workshops, talks and events.

We are hoping to set up a graduate programme in the next few months, to support creative folk on that difficult first step out of uni. We feel really passionately about supporting students and graduates and helping to retain the amazing talent the North has to offer. It seems as though there is a major gap in Leeds for offering these learning opportunities, and we’d really like to be able to help that.

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From personal experience it seems like a lot of the creative work is down south, how do you guys find that? Is there a lot of trips down to London or do you get just as much work up north?

When we left university in 2006 it was very much the opinion that London was where you went to be creative, but being stubborn adoptees of Yorkshire we both made a conscious decision to stay. Although staying up North may have changed the opportunities we have had, it has also given us different opportunities and the freedom to make our own path. 

We do often work in London, but to us that isn’t a problem, we have a lovely big studio where we can make everything and we can be in London in 2 hours if we need to be! Like we said we are passionate about retaining talent in the North, and not a lot would happen here if everybody decided to leave. The opportunities that the North has to offer at the moment are a lot different to the south sadly, but we feel very privileged to be part of a great creative, collaborative community here, and the more this grows, the more the opportunities for work will grow too.

How about a totally daft question here. If you guys were to wake up tomorrow morning, look in the mirror and say ‘Holy C%$P i’m a…!’ Which animal would you prefer to wake up as? 

Good question! We are big fans of the animal world, so we’ll happily answer this.  I’d say Lord would be a Narwhal (Unicorns of the sea!) and me (Whitney) a tiger. I love cats and this is the best cat, plus i could also pretend to be a rug as a joke. (Note this was a long debated answer, I love all animals so it was like asking me to choose between family!)

Like the sound of their latest project? You can get involved by throwing some green their way to enable them fully complete the big task, or if you want a more hands on approach, you can head on down to their studio and get stuck in! 

 

Visit Lord Whitney online right here.

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