Magazine article Sunset

Making It So

Magazine article Sunset

Making It So

Article excerpt

What happens when you bring together a city's worth of gear-heads and tinkerers and inventors? The best shop class ever!

After getting degrees in geology and urban planning, renaissance woman Kelley Roy founded ADX, a collaborative Portland workspace for woodworkers, metallurgists, boatbuilders, and other hands-on creatives, in 2011. Now Roy fields questions from people all over the world looking to start their own makerspaces, as these workshops are called. She's writing a book, due this fall, about the ins and outs of the DIY movement. We pulled her away for a quick chat.

Why Portland? Like Paris of the '20s or New York of the '50s, there's something here that's drawing a lot of creative people and creating a really interesting dynamic.

What inspired you to found ADX? In Portland, there were a lot of sharing spaces for photographers or motorcycle builders or architects or woodworkers, but there was nothing that mashed all those people together and put structure around it. I wanted to create a place where people from all different backgrounds could work under one roof. And I was trying to debunk the myth that I had been told as a young person: "You can't make a living as an artist."

ADX in a nutshell? It's like a fitness gym for design geeks. Instead of treadmills, we have tools; instead of personal trainers, we have craftspeople who can help you reach your goals. You want to make a table? We're gonna help you do that.

What would visitors see? …

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