Hidden among the beautiful antiquity of Boston’s neighboring Worcester is one of the most successful agencies in the area. Its story is evidence of an important idea: give your kids room to be creative and watch them find success.
Expansive ceilings with exposed, tidy ductwork sprawl over nearly 3,000 square feet of beautifully restored space just a few miles west of Boston. Chandeliers and LED tubes trade off duty in shedding some warm light on the space, which looks like it has just been staged for a Restoration Hardware catalog shoot. The only difference? This room was littered with equipment, high-end cameras, audio, and lighting in every corner. And, in between, dozens of the hip, east coast creative types ready to carry them to a shoot at a moment’s notice.
This was our visit to Boston agency, Votary Films, led by an unfailingly entrepreneurial spirit: Jed Burdick. He and his team have been shooting for decades, mixing corporate shoots for Fortune 100 brands with a hearty dose of missional work; the stuff that powers them through the stressful times. Burdick credits his success on two things: being business-minded in a world of ‘creative-types’ has certainly given him a leg up. But, more importantly, Jed never had his creativity stifled…he was always encouraged to take on his creative visions from an early age.
In fact, at Votary, there’s a trend that emerges as you get to know each of the creatives and producers. They share a similar backstory. Each, without fail, was pulled from the traditional track in education–pulled out of public schooling–in favor of a more flexible option. As we got to know the team, we heard about the projects they explored as young kids, the creative space they were given to operate in. It was heartening and it made us wonder: why aren’t more kids given this sort of freedom?
The fellas at Votary credit their success to an upbringing in which important values were interwoven with creative projects. As we look at a newly appointed podcast studio, an editing bay devoted to virtual reality films, and get a sneak peek at a few projects in the works, we’re blown away. Whatever got them here is worth exploring.