Small Studios or Big Companies?

A collage of inspiring snippets - philosophies, working styles, successes, failures and daily routines of small studios from across the globe.

By Siddharth Khandelwal

A treated cover of the book, Small Studios, by the erstwhile publishishing house, Page One.

I never ever imagined that I’d start my own design studio. In 2010, when I took the plunge from big company culture to start exploring the small ones, a friend gave me a unique book - Small Studios - as a gift. One thing led to another and TWO was born over a drink with a friend.

Years later, as I revisit this book, I am still fascinated and inspired by the ‘then and now’ journeys of the 100 small studios featured within.

Small studio leaders are still big design dreamers.

The central question raised in 2009, when the book was published, feels just as poignant now. In a world being battered then by the Great recession and now by the pandemic - will small studios be able to survive and thrive in the post-pandemic world? 

The snippets here are testimonies of those who have weathered incredible storms. Hopefully they prove stimulating to design studios looking to build longevity and value, and inspire clients to be brave enough to back these creative minds.


Below are a few excerpts from the Q&A at the start of the book with design legends Stefan Sagmeister, Catherine Griffiths, Henry Steiner, Piet Gerards, Bernard Stein and Niklaus Troxler.

(pg. 17-23)

Response to question 1

On the future of small studios and big companies:

Coming up next...

On the idea that big companies create standard designs while small studios are able to prioritise creativity.

Let’s start a conversation.

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