Inside the Studio: 72andSunny Los Angeles
“We design all of our spaces for optimism and for productivity,” mentioned Jenny Campbell, Managing Director of 72andSunny, Los Angeles. The agency’s name is, of course, indicative of LA’s perpetually cheery weather, but that’s not exactly the case of the climates where they have other studios, including New York, Amsterdam, Sydney, and, quite soon, Singapore. Instead, it is also viewed as a statement of optimism, a recognition of the opportunities that arise in every challenge—that’s more fun, after all.
The LA building itself is the former office of Howard Hughes, the well-known aviation mogul and film tycoon. Although some of the original elements of the space remain, such as the wood in Howard’s old office, much has been renovated to celebrate the open source creativity that 72andSunny is known for. Large windows welcome plenty of light, and spacious floors with desks next to each other take the place of endless rows of offices or cubicles. Here, people mix and mingle, share ideas, and feed off of each other’s inventiveness.
To an outsider, it might almost seem too open, but Campbell assured us that once people get comfortable in the space, they find their own little nooks and crannies perfect for quieter moments. “There are lots of little pockets to cozy up in for a quiet conversation or work session. The patio is a favorite in the summer time, with teams working on projects out in the sunshine,” she added. “There are also several tucked away sofas around the building that our teams love to post up in. The open kitchens are congregation spots at breakfast and lunch, just like they are in your own home.”
Wandering around the offices, you’ll find a large pavilion floor (“It’s consistent among our offices: an open atrium where we do our all-hands-on-deck meetings.”), a welcoming bar area, a 70s disco-inspired bathroom, and even state-of-the-art edit bays and two audio bays—an essential space to have in Los Angeles. This wasn’t all necessarily the original vision for the location; instead, 72andSunny builds onto what they have as they see fit. When new tech is needed for a project, they find a place for it, and they’d rather go all in than just get their toes wet.
It’s actually how they have developed HECHO EN 72, their on-site area to build something fresh with the help of audio and video equipment, a motion graphics bullpen, a maker space, and basements for shoots. “Experimentation comes from a need or desire to play,” said Campbell, and 72 certainly offers those opportunities for employees. Wandering through 72andSunny, you’ll catch a glance at some of the latest endeavors from those who work there, from Heritage Flags hanging in the stairwell to posters for upcoming events that involve the community.
The wide open space and immense variety also take part in the creative process. “What’s different here is the really fast tempo. We turnaround projects in 24-48 hours,” explained Campbell. The team aims to tackle projects with multiple minds, often leaving ideas written out for people to view and add to—and they try to prototype as early as possible. “The quicker you start making, the quicker you know if it’s going to work or not.”
And yes, the 72andSunny offices are pretty spectacular to experience in person, but what truly makes the agency unique is how highly they value their employees and the design industry as a whole. “We need to give people access to the tools and resources they need to explore a career in the creative field. For us, that means investing in people’s personal and professional growth, including returnships, internships, mentoring, workshops, creative bootcamps, and partnering with schools,” Campbell stated. “We’re keen on being learners and not experts. That said, we want to scale our mission to build and diversify the creative class, not just in our company, or solely in our industry, but for the entire creative field.”