As I push forward with my third year dissertation research I realise just how much creativity is going on in Cardiff. My research involves investigating the gap in between academia and creative work spaces, focusing on what benefits can arise from this collaboration and the potential barriers to be addressed.
Creative spaces are a current hot topic in Cardiff as more and more are popping up everywhere. What is interesting to me is that they are hugely different from each other; some are studios, some are office space and some are something else entirely. Freelancers, students, start-ups and business managers can all find a place suited to their needs here in Cardiff. Creative work spaces have become so popular to the point where organisations are putting on ‘Creative Hub Crawls’ to showcase the spaces available such as the one organised by Creative Cardiff.
Throughout my time on this project I have reconnected with some brilliant people including creative space managers across the city region. My research involves interviewing creative space producers to really get to the heart of the problems of collaboration with higher education in Cardiff. It’s been amazing to see so many great people get involved such as those at Hwyl Hub in Merthyr Tydfil, Welsh ICE in Caerphilly, The Sustainable Studio and Tramshed Tech both in Cardiff.
I think what really makes me not lose my mind as I struggle through my final semester and long days sat at a computer are the people at the heart of my research. The people that are willing to collaborate with me and are always open to a conversation has made me realise what a creative community is all about. Although the physical space is important, it is the foundation and building of a community that is the real innovation here.
So next time you sit down at your kitchen table ready to do work, disconnected and isolated, check out some of the above because you might just find some fantastic work spaces and inspiring people looking to create a connected city.