Entering The Frame at 4732 Monroe Road, we enter the world of motivated entrepreneur Camille Hughes. A professional photographer and native Charlottean, Camille realized there weren’t many natural light studios or creative spaces available for rent. She set out to build an inclusive space to support the city’s growing community of creatives and makers.
We’d been watching her vision take shape, as she transformed a unit inside the former Consignment Gallery, next to the Monroe Rd Convenience Store (a Nepali/Indian grocery) in Oakhurst.
Through the demolition phase, drywall buildout, new HVAC, and floor reno, Camille was finishing painting the day she invited MoRA to stop by.
It was already beautiful. Clean feeling and minimalist. Inviting.
“I wanted to give people a blank space to create so they are encouraged to just get started and remind them that you don’t need a million things.”
Camille says, “The goal is for the space to be intimate, welcoming, and naturally vibey, so people are motivated to create with no pressure.”
Our feet pivoting upon the speckled concrete floors, we turn slow circles letting our eyes follow the line of the room. Upward to the 12-foot ceilings, across the exposed white brick, down the industrial beams, and out the floor-to-ceiling windows. It definitely has a gallery feel to it. Open but intimate at the same time. The windows look across to the shops at Oakhurst on Monroe and the new SECU building.
Camille hopes the 1,100-square-foot-space will act as a hub for local creatives, entrepreneurs, small businesses, and organizations to bring their visions to life. It’s equipped with photography and videography equipment, props, and private access to host clients. The open floor plan and mobile furniture make it ideal for hosting small to medium-sized gatherings of all types for up to 65 people.
As she gestures to the tall cactus in an earth hued pot, we notice the tattoo art adorning her arms, specifically the one that reads “her history.”
“I love to travel, and I love to get new tats on my travels,” she says. “It’s cheaper and it just adds to the story of my life.”
After overcoming delays due to COVID-19, Camille is excited to become part of the community of businesses and neighborhoods along Monroe Road. She said she wants to see more of what fellow creatives have to share with the world.
“I just want people to have a space to create whatever is in their frame.”
Want to see The Frame in person? You’re invited to “Flow in flow out” from 6 to 8pm for the Grand Opening on Thursday, May 26.
To book your next shoot, host your next event, and find out more, visit www.theframeclt.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Rentals start at $125 per two-hour session.
Monroe Road Advocates (MoRA) is grassroots group of volunteers from Monroe Road neighborhoods, businesses, nonprofits, and schools. We’re connecting community in the corridor from Lupie’s/7th Street to NC-51.