Newstead Studios’ co-working office space is filled with some of the best creative talent and business minds Brisbane has to offer. This month we sit down with Tara from TD Creative Agency to find out about how her interior design business started, her creative inspiration, why she chose to set up camp here at NS and how her team always manages to find their way to a good snack table.
Tell us a bit about your business and how you got started
TDCA started with a random email from a good friend a few years ago, who was aware I loved interiors and asked if I could help him with his new jewelry shop. I was at QUT studying interior design and was so chuffed that he thought I would know what I was doing…which I didn’t but I said yes and loved every minute of fitting out his shop, and so TDCA was born as a side business. Fast forward 10 months and TDCA became my full time baby. Soon after, I hired my first staff member and then later a few more. We now work across residential, retail and hospitality spaces, offering full services from interior architecture and interior design right through to decoration and styling. We also like to dabble in event and wedding design and take on projects wherever our clients want us (so far Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney but soon maybe NZ and the USA!)
What does a typical day look like for TD Creative Agency?
The only thing typical about a TDCA day is that there isn’t a typical day. Aside from Hayley or Lilian beating me into the office by a good halfie, everything is downhill or uphill from there, depending on the day of the week and time of year. Mornings involve working out which fire to put out first, then I might have a site meeting or a call with a client and lots of emails, while Hayley/Lilian are working hard on a concept and attempting to interpret my ramble of ideas. Sometimes we’ll have a mid-morning supplier event where we’ll go to view new product but spend the whole time around the snack table, or we’ll be heads down in Construction Documentation or decoration sourcing and we’ll forget to breathe until mid arvo. I try and schedule supplier meetings for the afternoon so I can get as much client work done in the morning as possible, so late arvo we might catch up with supplier, which is really just a short and sweet gossip sesh and an opportunity to do some IG videos. Hayley & Lilian are then out early because they started early, at which time I’ll give up on procrastinating all our admin and sort through receipts/invoices/all that fun stuff. The only consistency between the days is that we eat at noon and Hayley is in charge of the Spotify playlist.
Where do you draw creative inspiration from?
Personally, I find the greatest inspiration in the details of the world around us, at moments when I am not searching or looking for ideas. It’s when my mind is wandering and making subconscious connections do I feel the most meaningful inspiration is created. However, the luxury of mindless mental wandering is not allocated to daily work (yet – I’ll get there one day!) so when we are looking for creative inspiration we search specifics words on Pinterest in the hope that exactly what we are looking for will pop up right before our eyes. Generally though, I get a jolt of visual creative inspiration with every yellowtrace and Dezeen email, and if I’m looking to feed my creative soul then it’s the Creative Mornings newsletter… through it I’ve stumbled across some incredible ideas and articles.
What made you chose Newstead Studios and what do you get most out of working here?
As interior designers, the space we work within is vitally important to our processes and general work mindset. If we’re in an inspiring, beautiful, creative and open space, then that energy comes through in our work. We spend most of our day within four walls, so I need those walls to feed into our morals and values. This is why we chose Newstead Studios – the interior is harmoniously balanced and the space is filled with inspiring, creative, like-minded individuals. There’s a strong sense of internal community and it’s great to have so many different things going on around us – whether it’s a shoot in the photography studio or a chat with our desk neighbour about their latest project or a quick visit to the café downstairs. It’s a relaxing and open environment and I thoroughly enjoy our days here.
What’s your BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)?
I’ve always envisaged a future in which TDCA is a full service creative agency across the entire design industry – essentially a “one stop shop” for anything design related. So many of our projects require the input of multiple disciplines, and I love being involved in all facets of a project, so the potential to provide interiors, graphics, landscape, advertising, architecture etc. all under the one roof is exciting. It’s a massive goal and the idea of it scares the heck out of me, but that’s the point of a BHAG!
Where can we find you?
I can always be found creeping on our Instagram @tdcreativeagency where you’ll find an unbalanced mix of serious work photos and goofy studio videos – we don’t take ourselves too seriously and this comes through in our social media. If you’re more of a straighty-one-eighty then our website will be for you, or if you’re keen to waste some precious time, we pin things we love on Pinterest @TDCreativeAgency. And if all else fails then find us in the Loaded Food Co downstairs at Newstead Studios!