As I was locking up the shop last night I had a revelation. The key in my hand, allowing entry to the studio, was not only physical – it was also metaphorical. With that key, and every key we’ve latched onto our key rings, came trust.

As we move around, we’re allowed to enter a company’s inner sanctum, a space where they do their work, in their style, in their way. We are invited in, sometimes to blend in and to be nothing more than a fly on the wall. Other times, we’re more interactive and collaborative. And in others, we are a disruptive element that shakes things up in their office. Regardless, we have to be up-front with our hosts, and let them know exactly how we will interact with them, and their employees, when we are crashing their pad. Regardless, it’s inspiring that we are invited in at all.

In some cases, like with Electric Pen, I’d only met John twice and he was willing to trust Justin and me with a key to the office. Within the first week we were the ones locking up the place. (Good thing the caravan is already loaded with bric-a-brac or we might have been tempted to load up and head to Arkansas.) And at Pixelube, within two days of us being there, Vince took off to go turkey hunting in the Midwest. We were introduced to Vince via a Craigslist post and only spoke momentarily before unloading the caravan on his doorstep. That said, maybe our hosts all have surveillance cameras and we’ll have some explaining to do – I keep telling Justin not to work in his underpants.

No matter what you’ve heard, we do shave every once in a while, and we’re not too hood-rat in our dress – we do have to present ourselves in front of clients every once in a while. In truth, we also have to trust our hosts, as we rely on them to provide a quality place to work, a professional environment where we can get some work done and, most importantly, generate some juicy creative vibes. Nothing is one sided.

We’re humbled to have this trust. Not totally sure we deserve it, but it’s a requirement for a traveling design studio that beds down with anyone who is willing to take us. It’s a humility that’s required if we’re to continue our trek all over Seattle – and it is one we are willing to wear.

Now, one last bit of business. It seems we’ve got a lot of scrap copper we’ve picked up along the way, anyone know a discreet smelter in SODO we can utilize?