Nov 22, 2021

Archipelago Wins the 2021 Toronto Star Readers' Choice Award!

Toronto Star Readers Choice Award Winner 2021 - Archipelago Productions


The Readers’ Choice Award-winning video production company grew its team and expanded its services during the pandemic

Video Production Team  - Archipelago Productions

Long known for their ability to produce a diverse and standout range of video-based offerings to institutions, non-profits, commercial clients and audiences alike, the Archipelago Productions team has recently garnered a new set of accolades. This time for their unique response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We made a very conscious decision to not lay anyone off from the beginning, and over time, word got out,” said Nicholas Ewart, Archipelago Productions’ Toronto-based founder. “It was important to us to make it clear, early on, that we were all in this for the long haul, and we’d either find a way to make it through together or we’d go bust.”

Of course, that meant the team needed to think outside the box in a big way. Archipelago chose to adopt new and innovative methods of video services, which included animations, enhanced graphics, and streaming and virtual events to best meet the needs of their clients.

“Our decision to push through enabled us to not only build up our team, as work volume continually grew, but we were also able to hire some amazing talent that we otherwise may not have had access to,” said Ewart. “In fact, our team almost doubled in size during the pandemic.”

This huge growth necessitated a new space for the Archipelago Productions staff, and in the summer of 2021, they took possession of a branded studio space on Sterling Road in Toronto’s west end.

“It’s a COVID-conscious, socially distanced space that we use both as a shooting location and for client meetings, where we discuss their wants and needs, from conception and vision to presenting the final video,” he said. “Having this dedicated location to gather has enabled our team to develop better systems, brainstorm together, and become a much stronger and more nimble unit.”

Shooting Location - Archipelago Productions

Being able to collaborate on a daily basis has brought about increased service offerings, as well.

“Our goal from the beginning has been to deliver any and all video production options that clients need with in-house staff, and, as we approach our fifth anniversary in January, that goal has been and continues to be realized,” Ewart said. “We have a wide roster of talent that includes producers, directors, photographers, production and post-production managers and supervisors, content editors, video editors, storyboard artists and more, and our team really is the best in the city at what they do.

“We’ve leaned into diversity, and are proud to say that we have a female majority in our office, with members who identify as non-binary and queer, in addition to a large roster of BIPOC contributors,” he continued. “The more diverse your team, the better the work you produce, because you’re speaking clearer to a wider range of Canadians. Choosing to go the monoculture route in an office means you can’t serve clients in the same way. We’re not only choosing to procure diverse talent because it’s the right thing to do; it also means we’re providing better service to our clients.

“Winning this Readers Choice Award is an honour because it’s very telling of the fact that our team stands out in Toronto’s video production industry,” Ewart added. “There’s something to be said of a group of individuals who have worked together for years, understand each other’s shorthand, and have the level of talent and creativity required to keep clients coming back year after year. We couldn’t be more proud of the reputation we’ve worked so hard to earn.”

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