During the pandemic, photographer Brittney Kwasney of Bright Photography used her creativity and vision to feature local Victoria, BC businesses, artists, musicians and entrepreneurs on her Instagram page. She dubbed it #YYJLovesLocal.
The following is an excerpt from Bright Photo's Instagram interview with own very own Kirk Van Ludwig:
Introducing Kirk Van Ludwig from Autonomous Furniture. A furniture designer, who’s brand Autonomous Furniture, studio and showroom is based in Victoria selling contemporary furniture with dealers in Vancouver and Manhattan.
How has your business been affected by the current health crisis?
We were having one of our best months ever as of the 15th of March, then everything halted. No inquiries, no new sales. A portion of our business is in other parts of Canada and the United States. We will have to pivot and employ other strategies. It’s really important to me not to just lean on the government, because I don’t think they can cover the bet. But we’re a scrappy bunch so let's get it on.
What have you been most challenged and/or inspired by during the pandemic thus far?
In our business, we have deliverables, furniture being built, there is about 8 weeks' work, however, we require new orders to fund the current work. We will have to be highly strategic and our team and suppliers will need to play ball.
How can people support you and stay connected through this?
The pandemic has highlighted for us why we started the business, a home is your sanctuary, a place of comfort and peace. One good thing this crisis might yield is highlighting the importance of what makes us smile, your home to be beautiful and meaningful, maybe the things we’ve been purchasing that lack soul and effort weren’t needed. I’m designing a dining table to launch this month that embodies the Autonomous spirit, uses solid sustainably sourced wood, at a price everyone can afford. We are forgoing our usual margin in an effort just to keep our folks employed and fill your home with a beautiful piece that will stand the test of time. We’ve been scrapping it out for 7 years, we have amazing local customers, we need people to know we are working, building, and creating. I’m proud of the city, we want to be part of the solution as safely as possible.
Many thanks to Bright Photo for the platform to share our story. Be sure to check out Brit's stellar photography work here.