WorkSpace June 14, 2011
My first career was spent in corporate America where conformity and standards tend to rule. My office looked pretty much like the ones on either side of me. The majority of cubicles were boring in their compliance with the “guidelines”. So, I’ve always been intrigued by the physical environments that develop around people who are left alone to shape their work space as they see fit. Over time, these places begin to take on a level of efficiency, inspiration, and beauty that is often missing in The Office.
Much can be discerned from the results: what does the place say about the person? The nature of the work itself? What role does the space play in the productivity of its occupier? Has it evolved or does it remain constant? What goes on here that we consumers of the products or services created therein do not usually know?
This project is, first of all, intended to bring these “behind the counter” places into the light for the curious among us. However, as I began this journey, the unexpected pleasure turned out to be the stories of the companies and the people who work there. Most of these businesses are privately held. Most were begun by a single individual and many grew into multi-generational family affairs, each one fascinating, each one encouraging. It reminded me of the powerful and necessary role that the small business plays in the health of America. And so, my secondary desire was to capture and share with the viewer in a single image as much as possible about the “Story” of the firm.
The result, I hope, is that you will be pleased by the images and that your curiosity about the other unknowns or unseens around you will be peaked, setting you off on an exploration of your own